Game Winner – Gary and Mary West’s Game Winner proved just that when he overcame a less than ideal trip to take the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile by 2 ½ lengths. Assistant trainer Jimmy Barnes reported that the colt came out of the race well and will now get a rest.
“He came out of the race in good shape and looked good this morning,” Barnes said. “He just walked this morning and will walk again on Sunday. We ship on Monday.”
Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, who was winning the Juvenile for a fourth time, was non-committal about future plans, but did say the colt would now get some rest.
“We’re going to freshen him up a little bit and get ready for the spring,” Baffert said. “He had a pretty rough (trip) but still won. You can’t compare horses, but of all the Juvenile winners (race performance), he’s the best one.”
Baffert had previously won the Juvenile with Vindication (2002), Midshipman (2008) and New Year’s Day (2013).
Knicks Go – KRA Stud Farm’s Knicks Go had his trainer Ben Colebrook still beaming Saturday morning after his runner-up effort to Game Winner.
“He ran his eyeballs out yesterday and he is fine this morning,” Colebrook said. “We are going to dodge Game Winner for a while. I don’t think (Bob) Baffert will be sending anybody to Tampa.”
Colebrook winters his barn at Tampa Bay Downs and is eyeing that track’s series of 3-year-old stakes for Knicks Go in early 2019.
Jaywalk – Trainer John Servis reported Saturday morning that Jaywalk exited her front-running triumph in Friday’s Tito’s Homemade Vodka Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies at Churchill Downs in fine order.
“She’s great, doing really good,” Servis said. “She’s bright-eyed; she ate up good.”
The daughter of Cross Traffic broke alertly from the starting gate to grab an early lead that she would never relinquish in her first start around two turns on her way to a 5 ½-length victory under Joel Rosario.
“It was awful impressive. She’s got such a fast cruising speed. I didn’t expect her to be in front, because (trainer Tom) Amoss said he was going to send his horse (Serengeti Empress) no matter what. I told Joel, ‘Just sit off of Amoss. She’ll rate. She’ll do whatever you want her to do,’” Servis said. “When he came back, he said, ‘Two jumps out of the gate and I knew there’s wasn’t any sitting back.’ He said, ‘She took me there.’ Once she got in front, she just pricked her ears and relaxed.”
Jaywalk ran 1 1/16m in 1:43.62, which compared favorably to Game Winner’s winning time of 1:43.67 in the Juvenile two races later on Friday’s card.
“They came home good. They ran the last sixteenth in 6-and-2 (seconds), something like that,” Servis said.
Servis has had amazing success at Churchill Downs in limited opportunities, winning with his only Kentucky Derby starter, Smarty Jones (2004), and his only Kentucky Oaks starter, Cathryn Sophia (2016).
“How can you not love it? I come in here and they treat me well here. My horses run well here,” Servis said.
Jaywalk was his second Breeders’ Cup starter, following Jostle, who finished ninth in the 2000 Distaff at Churchill.
“I shouldn’t have run her. I should have scratched her. She just wasn’t right. She wasn’t eating up,” Servis said. “She didn’t have a temperature, but she wasn’t herself.”
Jaywalk is scheduled to fly to West Palm Beach, Fla. Sunday.
“She’ll stay at Palm Meadows (Training Center) for a week or so and then I think I’m going to send her to Ocala for 30 days and let her be a horse for a little bit.” Servis said.
With next year’s Kentucky Oaks the first major goal, Servis said Jaywalk could take a similar path to the one taken by Cathryn Sophia, who won the Forward Gal and Davona Dale stakes at Gulfstream Park before finishing third in the Ashland at Keeneland.
JUVENILE FILLES TURF
Newspaperofrecord – Trainer Chad Brown has reported that dominant Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf winner Newspaperofrecord, who races under Seth Klarman’s Klaravich Stables banner, has exited her victory in the good shape and that the daughter of Lope de Vega is done for the year. The undefeated bay filly will be pointed to a 2019 campaign.
“She’s good so far,” Brown said. “It was great to win for Seth,” he added. “There’s no nicer guy. It was a big deal.”
Brown also followed up on the surprisingly subpar efforts of Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile runners Complexity and Standard Deviation, who finished 10th and 13th (last), respectively. Complexity set the pace before fading in the final quarter mile and Standard Deviation never got involved.
“I’m disappointed, obviously, that neither fired,” Brown said. “So far both are okay physically. It’s back to the drawing board with them and neither will run again this year. We’ll take them to Florida.”
Brown also reported that all nine of his runners remain in today, Breeders’ Cup Saturday. The softer ground on the turf course was especially a concern for both Shadwell Stable’s Almanaar and William H. Lawrence’s Analyze It, who will collectively be his first Breeders’ Cup Mile starters. He saddles a record-equaling five in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf, led by Grade 1 winners Sistercharlie and Fourstar Crook, as well as Arlington Million winner Robert Bruce in the Turf and Chilean Triple Crown winner Wow Cat in the Longines Distaff.
JUVENILE TURF SPRINT
Bulletin – The undefeated Juvenile Turf Sprint winner Bulletin is likely to have a brief respite from racing before embarking on his 3yo campaign. Owned by WinStar Farm, China Horse Club and SF Racing, the City Zip colt won the Hollywood Beach Stakes at Gulfstram Park in his only other start. Trainer Todd
Pletcher said he will discuss Bulletin’s future with WinStar Farm President and Racing Manager Elliott Walden.
“I would imagine he would get a little vacation at WinStar Farm,” he said early Saturday morning. “We haven’t firmed anything up just yet. At some point switching him to dirt might be under consideration but not any time in the near future.”
All horses that ran in Friday’s three Breeder’s Cup Turf races were reported in good shape this morning after yesterday’s efforts on the Churchill Downs turf course.
Talismanic, who will be trying to make it two wins in a row in the Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf, went out on to the dirt again this morning with stable companion Waldgeist and stretched their legs ahead of their assignments later today.
With one win on the board, through Line of Duty in the Juvenile Turf, the Europeans are hoping that more victories will follow today.