Breeders' Cup Roundup: Oct. 11, 2021

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October 11th, 2021

Just under four weeks out from the Nov. 5-6 Breeders’ Cup at Del Mar, racing preparations for the year-end championship are nearly complete.

Let’s catch up on all the results from October’s action-packed second weekend:

Letruska, Juju’s Map shine on opening week at Keeneland

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday comprised opening week at the prestigious Keeneland fall meet, where no fewer than nine Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” qualifiers took place. Here’s how the action unfolded:

  • Special Reserve was the first qualifier of the week, tracking a quick pace before hanging on to win Keeneland’s six-furlong Phoenix S. (G2) by a neck. The son of Midshipman reached the finish line in a snappy 1:08.54 to secure a spot in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) field.
  • Juju’s Map had little difficulty dominating the Alcibiades S. (G1) to emerge as a key contender for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1). The Brad Cox trainee tracked a hot pace before seizing command and pulling clear to win the 1 1/16-mile event by 4 1/4 lengths in 1:43.52.
  • In Love, a rapidly improving miler, stamped his ticket to the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) with an authoritative triumph in the Keeneland Turf Mile (G1). After rating back in seventh place, the Brazilian-bred five-year-old exploded down the homestretch to win by 1 1/2 lengths in 1:34.84 over a good course.
  • Rattle N Roll capitalized on a quick pace to crush the 1 1/16-mile Breeders’ Futurity (G1) with ease. After saving ground in midfield, Rattle N Roll shifted outside, swept to the lead, and pulled clear to win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) qualifier by 4 1/4 lengths in 1:43.78.
  • Blowout displayed unwavering tenacity in the First Lady S. (G1), leading all the way to score by a half-length over stablemate Regal Glory. The Chad Brown trainee completed the one-mile turf test in 1:34.86 to earn a slot in the starting gate for the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1). According to Daily Racing Form, however, she is under consideration for the Mile rather than trying to stretch out to 1 3/8 miles for the Filly & Mare Turf. 
  • Bell’s the One fought tooth and nail to emerge victorious from a three-horse photo finish in the Thoroughbred Club of America S. (G2), a stepping stone toward the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1). The wire came just in time for Bell’s the One, who held off a late-surging rival to win the six-furlong sprint by a head in 1:08.63.
  • Letruska earned an impressive fourth Win and You’re In berth to the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1) when dominating the 1 1/8-mile Spinster S. (G1). Favored at 2-5, the daughter of Super Saver led all the way to score by 1 3/4 lengths in 1:49.01, in the process securing her fourth Grade 1 win of the season.
  • Tiz the Bomb broke through the gate and ran off prior to the Bourbon S. (G2), but bounced back none the worse for wear to win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) qualifier by three-quarters of a length. The son of 2015 Juvenile Turf winner Hit It a Bomb rallied gamely to complete the 1 1/16-mile turf test in 1:43.69.
  • Averly Jane staked her claim as the possible Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G2) favorite with a front-running score in the Indian Summer S. The Wesley Ward trainee led all the way to win the 5 1/2-furlong turf sprint by three lengths in 1:02.65, picking up the third stakes win of her unblemished 4-for-4 career.

In addition, reigning Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint winner Golden Pal picked up a flashy 2 1/4-length victory in the Woodford S. (G2), cementing his credentials as a key contender for the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1).

Following Sea, Slipstream impress at Belmont Park

Keeneland wasn’t the only track to host Win and You’re In qualifiers last week. Belmont Park likewise got in on the action with a pair of Breeders’ Cup prep events:

  • In the Vosburgh S. (G2), a stepping stone toward the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, the talented three-year-old Following Sea got out in front and pulled away down the stretch to beat nine-time graded stakes winner Firenze Fire by 4 3/4 lengths. Following Sea completed the six-furlong sprint in a respectable 1:09.20.
  • In the Futurity S. (G3), a qualifier for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint, Slipstream overcame a troubled start to rally gamely through traffic and prevail by one length, completing six furlongs on grass in 1:08.36. Trainer Christophe Clement has indicated Slipstream will likely skip the Juvenile Turf Sprint in favor of a run in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf.

Upcoming Win and You’re In qualifier

The Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series concludes on Wednesday with the running of the Jessamine S. (G2) at Keeneland. The 1 1/16-mile turf test awards a Win and You’re In berth to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, a prize sufficient to attract an overflow group of 16 horses to the entries. Undefeated stakes winner Turnerloose looks like the logical favorite, especially if New York raider Haughty fails to draw in off the also-eligible list.

Stay tuned to TwinSpires Edge for more coverage and analysis as the road to the Breeders’ Cup continues!