Red Desire put up a good fight in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1), but failed to quicken in the stretch and finished in fourth place, less than one and a half lengths behind winner Shared Account. Red Desire, with American jockey Kent Desormeaux riding for Mikio Matsunaga, took part in the 27th version of the Breeders’ Cup, held this year at Churchill Down Racecourse in Louisville, Kentucky. The 12th Filly and Mare Turf was run Friday evening in Kentucky, 7:53 a.m. Saturday Japan time.
Desormeaux, who was riding Red Desire in her second American race, held her about midfield 4 1/2 lengths off the leaders and three wide until the stretch, where he moved out. Red Desire was in the lead at the top of the stretch and continued to run strongly. She held a narrow lead until the final 200 meters, but was overtaken in the end.
Shared Account, ridden by Edgar Prado for trainer Graham Motion, was a surprise win in the race, pulling off the biggest upset in the race’s history. The 2009 Filly & Mare Turf champ Midday finished a neck behind the winner in second place, with Keertana in third place another neck later.
Shared Account had held fourth position along the rail, shifted out a bit entering the stretch, then split horses with a furlong to run and fought stubbornly through a prolonged drive to the finish.
Motion was overjoyed with his second Breeders’ Cup win. “I’m speechless. I’m very emotional. I love this filly. I’m not surprised she won. I’m really surprised she was overlooked (by the bettors). She only had one bad race. I’m so glad for Edgar.”
Prado, whom Shared Account gave his fourth Breeders’ Cup win, said, “It worked out like we planned. I tried to get the filly nice and relaxed in the first part of the race. She broke so good, and I dove right into the rail and. I was able to cover her up. I was very happy where I was. I was hoping the hole would stay open until I got there, and luckily the filly was running pretty good. Once she saw the clear, she kept grinding. I think she really wanted to win today. She was very game and I was happy for her.”
Desormeaux said Red Desire ran well but was foiled by the slow pace. “It was a shame she was overtaken at the end,” he said.
Matsunaga said he was once again reminded of just how difficult it is to win overseas and, though he admitted he was not satisfied, he felt Red Desire had tried hard despite the disappointing results.
The Manhattan Cafe-sired Red Desire out of the Caerleon mare Great Sunrise, was bred by Shadai Farm on the north Japan island of Hokkaido. She is owned by Tokyo Horse Racing and is now 4 for 12, including her runs in Japan and abroad.
The globe-trotting Red Desire has had a formidable career and has now raced in three countries. After a second-place run in the top-level Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas) in 2009, she followed with another second in the Yushun Himba (Japanese Oaks), but took the Shuka Sho in the fall, a female event considered the final leg of the Japan triple crown for fillies. Red Desire then went on to the Japan Cup for her final race of the year and finished third.
This year two of her three starts were in Dubai, where she turned in a surprise win of Round Three of the Al Maktoum Challenge (G2) on March 4 at Meydan, followed by an 11th-place finish in the Dubai World Cup on March 27. Her most recent start was the Flower Bowl Invitational Oct. 2 at Belmont. In that race, a G1 2,000-meter turf event, Red Desire finished far ahead of both Shared Account (fifth) and Keertana (fourth), but behind winner Ave, who is now in Japan to take on the Queen Elizabeth II Commemorative Stakes next Sunday.
Shared Account is a 4-year-old bay filly by Pleasantly Perfect, out of Silk n’ Sapphire by Smart Strike. She was bred by William Carl and is owned by Sagamore Farm’s Kevin Plank, founder and chief executive officer of Baltimore-based Under Armour Inc. Plank who said his interest in racing started as a fan “in the Preakness infield,” got his real start in 2006. He went on to buy the historic Sagamore Farm in Maryland the following year and that fall, he purchased Shared Account for $170,000 in the Keeneland September yearling sale.
Shared Account’s winning time was 2 minutes 17.74 seconds over firm turf. She is now 6 for 15.
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Breeders' Cup website: http://www.breederscup.com/
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Equibase website: http://www.equibase.com/
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