The formidable presence of Cigar hasn't scared away potential challengers from the $4 million Breeders' Cup Classic. Thirteen rivals have been entered to take on the defending champion at Toronto's Woodbine Race Course Oct. 26.
Entries for the all of the Breeders' Cup races were announced Thursday, and the one notable absentee from the main event was Skip Away, who beat Cigar in the Jockey Club Gold Cup last month.
Because the colt had not been nominated to the Breeders' Cup, owner-trainer Sonny Hine would have had to pay $480,000 to make the 3-year-old a supplementary entry, and he didn't like the odds. Skip Away's upset victory stripped the aura of invincibility away from Cigar, and and surely encouraged others to run against him.
The entrants in the Classic include Dare and Go, who snapped Cigar's 16-race winning streak at Del Mar this summer; Will's Way, impressive winner of the Travers Stakes; the 3-year-old filly Yanks Music; and Taiki Blizzard, who has earned nearly $4 million racing in Japan.