BC Mile Preview
Written by Ian Tapp | Nov 06, 2010 |
Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. I) ∙ $2,000,000 ∙ 1 mile, turf
Race 8, Saturday, 4:40 PM
||Tale of the Cat
||Paco Boy (IRE)
||The Usual Q. T.
1 - Beethoven (IRE)
Oratorio three-year-old Beethoven won the group I Dewhurst last year, but has had a very intriguing campaign this season. A winner of the group III Desomond Stakes over a mile, Beethoven has since been unplaced in the 10-furlong Irish Champion (gr. I), the one-mile QEII (gr. I), and the 10.5-furlong Diamond Stakes on Polytrack. Out of a stakes-winning miler by Sadler's Wells, Danehill and sons have done well with Sadler's Wells, getting 26 stakes winners from 162 starters.
2 - Society's Chairman
Runner-up last time in the Shadwell Turf Mile (gr. I) behind impressive Gio Ponti, seven-year-old Society's Chairman is a son of Sadler's Wells stallion Not Impossible. The dam, by Olympio, is a half sister to Hodges Bay, a winner of the 12-furlong Rothmans (now Canadian) International (gr. I). From 24 starters, there are four stakes winners by Sadler's Wells and sons with Naskra line mares, and Society's Chairman is the most accomplished. A runner from well off the pace, he is an interesting longshot given the likely strong fractions.
3 - Gio Ponti
Hard not to admire this champion racehorse, and at this stage of his career it looks like a good choice to go in the Mile rather than the Classic. By the versatile Tale of the Cat (TrueNicks,SRO) from an Alydar mare, Gio Ponti is a half brother to two good dirt routers in Bon Jovi Girl and Fisher Pond. Undoubtedly, Tale of the Cat has imparted turf ability, as his runners act on just about any surface. While Gio Ponti is Tale of the Cat's only stakes winner from an Alydar line mare, the Storm Cat line in general has done very will with Alydar (rated A+.
4 - Court Vision
The Gulch horse Court Vision can run a big race at any time. Out of the unraced Storm Bird mare Weekend Storm, Court Vision is a half brother to five other stakes horses, and a full brother to sire Kipling (TrueNicks,SRO)
, sire of BC Mile winner Kip Deville. The second dam, Weekend Surprise, needs no introduction. The cross of Gulch with Storm Bird mares is solid at B, getting six stakes winners from 39 starters, but most of these horses are middle-distance types, such as Derby winner Thunder Gulch (TrueNicks,SRO)
. Court Vision is a grade I winner at eight, nine, and 10 furlongs, and while he should be closing late, the feeling is that he'd have a better shot in the Breeders' Cup Mile-and-an-eighth.
5 - Delegator (GB)
Dansili colt Delegator enters the Mile off a pair of seven-furlong starts since running fifth in last year's edition. Out of an Efisio mare, Delegator is bred on the same cross as group II-winning stayer Illustrious Blue, underlining the versatility of Dansili, a miler who has sired top class runners across the distance spectrum. Placed in three group I events last season, Delegator is probably looking in the wrong place for an elusive win at the highest level.
6 - Paco Boy (IRE)
Hard-trying Desert Style horse Paco Boy comes to America for yet another crack at Goldikova. From the family of fellow Desert Style colt Cape Town—also a seven- to eight-furlong horse—Paco Boy figures to be one of the main threats to beat the favorite. Green Desert and sons have two stakes winners from seven starters out of Yellow God line mares, with Paco Boy's crossmate being versatile Italian stakes winner Golden Wild. With no inbreeding within five generations, and no flashy names close up in the family, Paco Boy is truly a unique talent.
7 - The Usual Q. T.
Unusual Heat gelding The Usual Q. T. enters off a second-place effort behind Court Vision in the Woodbine Mile (gr. I). Out of a Western Fame (by Gone West) full sister to 8.5-furlong Turf Paradise record holder Western Act, The Usual Q. T. represents an average cross of Nureyev and sons with Gone West line mares. The cross rates only an average C. Furthermore, The Usual Q. T. is Unusual Heat's only stakes winner from 32 starters out of Mr. Prospector line mares. A winner of the nine-furlong Eddie Read Handicap (gr. I) earlier this season, The Usual Q. T. meets the toughest field of his career in the Mile.
8 - Get Stormy
Stormy Atlantic (TrueNicks,SRO)
colt Get Stormy has come alive this season at a mile and slightly behind, though against lesser quality that he meets in the BC Mile. Out of a Kiri's Clown mare, the cross is shared by stakes winner New Edition, a turf filly who placed in the Lake Placid (gr. II) on turf at nine furlongs. The only black type winner under the first three dams, Get Stormy illustrates the sire ability of Stormy Atlantic, who apparently can get a top class horse even if the mare lacks a prolific immediate family. It's interesting to note, Get Stormy is inbred 4 x 5 to Moccasin, through Stormy Atlantic's second dam, Flippers, and Get Stormy's third damsire, Apalachee.
9 - Sidney's Candy
Candy Ride (ARG) (TrueNicks,SRO) has enjoyed a terrific 2010, thanks in part to Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) and La Jolla (gr. II) winner Sidney's Candy. In the latter race, Sidney's Candy set an 8.5-furlong Del Mar course record of 1:39.52 in an essentially freaky performance. Out of a Storm Cat mare, the cross of Candy Ride with Storm Cat line mares has two other grade I winners from only six starters—Capt. Candyman Can and Evita Argentina, both seven-furlong types. Sidney's Candy's second dam is Exchange, who won three turf grade I's at nine and ten furlongs, so there are family indicators to make sense of Sidney's Candy brilliance in these conditions.
10 - Goldikova (IRE)
Superstar Anabaa mare Goldikova goes for her third consecutive BC Mile, and she is likely to find her preferred firm ground at Churchill Downs. Out of a mare by Blushing Groom, the cross of Anabaa and Blushing Groom line mares is only about average, as has been noted multiple times on TrueNicks.com by Alan Porter of Pedigree Consultants, who consulted on the mating. There are five stakes winners from 49 starters on the cross, and the mating of Anabaa and Born Gold has several other interesting pedigree elements at play.
11 - Proviso (GB)
The second mare in the field represents a second Dansili offspring as well. Proviso is a Juddmonte-bred daughter of the exceptional Juddmonte stallion, who was third 10 years ago in the BC Mile here at Churchill Downs. Out of the Woodman mare Binche, Proviso is a half sister to Prince of Wales (gr. I) winner Byword (by Peintre Celebre). Dansili rates A with Mr. Prospector line mares, getting eight stakes winners (five group, and three group I) from 49 starters. Proviso's mating doubles strains of Buckpasser, Blushing Groom, Nijinsky, and Northern Dancer inside five generations. Obviously in exceptional form this year, Proviso is one of the main players here.