Take Charge Brandi proves her Breeders’ Cup victory was no fluke
PICTURE: copyright Wendy Wooley/EquiSport Photos
Report: USA, Saturday
Delta Downs: Delta Downs Princess (Grade 3) 1m, dirt, 2yo fillies
SHOCK 66-1 Breeders’ Cup winner Take Charge Brandi (D Wayne Lukas/Paco Lopez) followed up in impressive style just three weeks later in the Delta Downs Princess.
Sent down to Vinton, Louisiana, for this $400,000 contest after her all-the-way triumph at Santa Anita, the daughter of Giant’s Causeway had to settle for second this time in the early stages as she pressed a quick pace (22.34s, 46.44s) set by Vivian Da Bling.
The 11-5 favourite swamped the pacemaker as they entered the far turn before holding off Skipalute to score by a length and a half to prove her Breeders’ Cup victory was no fluke – and in the process wrap up championship honours. The final time was 1m39.60s.
“She showed her class today because I didn’t think she handled the racetrack very well,” said Lukas.
Also on Saturday
Delta Downs: Delta Downs Jackpot (Grade 3) 1m½f, dirt, 2yo
Ocho Ocho Ocho (Jim Cassidy/Mike Smith) had to survive an objection from third-placed Far Right before being confirmed the winner of this $1 million event, in which the Californian shipper extended his unbeaten record to three out of three.
Just as in the Princess earlier on the card, a scorching pace was set here as Conquest Tsunami and Prime Engine fought through the early splits in 22.27s and 45.74s.
Smith, who deserves enormous credit for getting Ocho Ocho Ocho over to the rail from a wide draw, settled the son of Street Sense in mid-division before moving up smoothly on the far turn and then just holding Mr. Z by a nose in an all-out drive to the wire. The final time was 1m45.47s.
Ocho Ocho Ocho will now have a break before a Kentucky Derby campaign on the west coast.
Aqueduct: One-time Kentucky Derby hope Honor Code (Shug McGaughey/Javier Castellano) made a winning comeback after an eight-month layoff in a dirt allowance race over 6½f, rallying from sixth before scoring by a length.
The Remsen Stakes winner was knocked off the Triple Crown trail with a slight tear of his off-hind suspensory.
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