ARCADIA, Calif. – Bricks and Mortar made a final check mark on his Horse of the Year campaign, winning his sixth straight race of the year in winning the $4 million Breeders' Cup Turf.
Here’s a capsule look at the eight Breeders’ Cup undercard races on Saturday at Santa Anita Park:
Filly and Mare Sprint: Covfefe ($5) kicked off the nine BC races to give trainer Brad Cox his second win on the weekend. Jockey Joel Rosario rode his tenth BC winner who paid $3.60 to place and $3 to show. She held off a hard charging Bellafina by three-quarters of a length. Dawn the Destroyer at 22-1 rounded out a $1 trifecta that paid $94.10.
Turf Sprint: Post Time top selection Belvoir Bay ($31.60) held off stablemate Om to win the $1 million Turf Sprint. Trained by Peter Miller and ridden by Javier Castellano, the son of Equiano paid $14.40 to place and $7.60 to show. It was the third straight year that Miller won the Turf Sprint. Shekky Shebaz finished third.
Dirt Mile: Spun to Run ($20.20) went gate-to-wire in his 2 3/4-length victory over a late closing Omaha Beach in the $1 million race. It was Juan Carlos Guerrero’s first BC win and Irad Ortiz Jr. was in the irons. The win returned his backers $7 to place and $4.80 to show. Blue Chipper finished third for Kim Young-Kwan.
Filly and Mare Turf: Iridessa ($28.40) pulled off a big upset defeating highly regarded Sistercharlie, who finished third. The Irish-bred son of Ruler of the World held off a game Vasilika in deep stretch to win the $2 million race. It was both jockey Wayne Lordan’s and trainer Joseph O’Brien’s first BC victory. The winner paid $11.20 to place and $5 to show.
Sprint: Post Time top pick Mitole ($5.60) likely wrapped up the male sprint division with a win in the $2 million Sprint. Trainer Steve Asmussen won his seventh career BC race. Ricardo Santana Jr. was aboard for his first ever BC win. Mitole paid $3.20 to place and $2.60 to show. Front running Shancelot was beaten 1 1/4-lengths for second and Whitmore completed the trifecta.
Mile: The mare beat the filly in the $2 million Mile as Uni ($9.20) stormed by Got Stormy for trainer Chad Brown, giving him his second win on the weekend. Jockey Joel Rosario won his 11th BC race aboard the daughter of More Than Ready. The winner returned $4.80 to place and $3.60 to show. Without Parole finished third for Brown.
Distaff: Blue Prize ($19.80) handed Midnight Bisou her first loss of the year for trainer Ignacio Correas IV. She paid $5.60 for second and $4.20 for show, defeating second place Midnight Bisou by a length-and-a-half. Jersey Joe Bravo won the first BC race of his long career. The pace setting Serengeti Empress finished third.
Turf: Super horse Bricks and Mortar ($4) bottled up inside for much of the race, got outside and blew by the field to win the $4 million Turf. It was his sixth win this year and could vault him to Horse of the Year honors. He paid $3.20 to place and $2.40 to show. Both trainer Brown and jockey Ortiz Jr. captured their third wins on the weekend, respectively. A late closing United finished second for trainer Richard Mandella. Anthony Van Dyck filled out the trifecta.
Gene Kershner, a Buffalo-based turf writer, is a member of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association, and tweets @EquiSpace.