Wednesday, November 2, 2011 12:00 AM
- Kentucky Cup
- Spiral Stakes
FLORENCE, Ky., Nov. 2, 2011 – Hansen, a silvery-gray 2-year-old colt owned by Northern Kentucky physician Kendall Hansen, is among horses who prepped at Turfway Park for the nation's biggest day of Thoroughbred racing, the $25.5 million Breeders' Cup World Championships this Friday and Saturday.
The 15 races that comprise the Breeders' Cup will be run this year at Churchill Downs and will be simulcast in their entirety from Turfway Park.
Hansen will contest the $2 million Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) and is fifth choice on the morning line at 10-1. The colt is undefeated in two career starts, both at Turfway. He broke his maiden at first asking on Sept. 9, leading at every mark and drawing away to win by 12 1/4 lengths. He came right back Sept. 24 to dominate the Bluegrass Cat Kentucky Cup Juvenile Stakes, leading gate to wire and cruising to a 13 1/4-length victory.
Even before Hansen broke the gate for the first time, trainer Mike Maker was looking ahead to this Saturday. "I was thinking Breeders' Cup for this horse even before he ran," Maker said before Hansen's start in the Bluegrass Cat Kentucky Cup Juvenile. "He's a very gifted horse."
Hansen faces 12 rivals in the Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, the ninth race on Saturday’s card. Ramon Dominguez has the mount.
Trainer Darrin Miller entered Havelock in the WinStar Kentucky Cup (G2) at Turfway to test the 4-year-old gelding around two turns. An off-the-board finish in that race convinced Miller to return Havelock to sprinting, and the decision paid off in his next start when he won the Woodford Stakes (G3) at Keeneland Oct. 8. Havelock is one of 14 entered for the $1 million Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (G2), the sixth race on Saturday, and is third choice on the morning line at 9-2. Havelock is owned by Bonnie and Tommy Hamilton's Silverton Hill LLC and will be ridden in the Turf Sprint by Robby Albarado.
Baryshnikov will make his Breeders' Cup debut in the $500,000 Breeders' Cup Marathon (G2), run at 1 3/4 miles. The 5-year-old horse, also trained by Maker, was compromised by a wide trip in the WinStar Kentucky Cup at Turfway on Sept. 24 and finished fifth as the 2-1 favorite. Before that off-the-board finish he had finished no worse than third in his 10 previous starts and had won five. One of those wins was his previous start at Turfway, the 1 1/8-mile Tejano Run in March. Owned by Jeffrey A. Columbro and Connie Apostelos, Baryshnikov is the co-seventh morning line choice for the Marathon at 12-1. Mike Smith has the mount. Eleven are entered for the Marathon, Saturday's third race.
Also on Turfway's radar in the Breeders' Cup are contenders who won graded stakes here last year: Eldaafer, who won last year's Breeders' Cup Marathon after prepping with a win in the Turfway Park Fall Championship (G3); and Dean's Kitten, who won the 2010 Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes (then the G2 Lane's End Stakes) and is entered for the $3,000,000 Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Turf (G1).
Turfway's gates open at 11:15 a.m. on Friday and at 10 a.m. on Saturday. Admission and parking are free both days. Reservations, some including buffet service, are available for Saturday by calling (859) 371-0200. Advanced wagering on Saturday's Breeders' Cup card is available on Friday from noon to 10 p.m.