Travers Day at Saratoga Awards 4 Winners Breeders’ Cup Berths
Four Breeders’ Cup Challenge races were part of the huge Travers Day attraction Saturday at Saratoga. The featured race produced a West Coast winner in the $1.25 million Travers and another potential candidate in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. But four other winners qualified by taking the ‘Win and You’re In’ races.
Working in order starting with the $700,000 Personal Ensign in Race 6, Songbird continued her dominating career but came up just short of the winner Forever Unbridled, who closed powerfully to catch Songbird in the final strides. She finished 1 1/8 miles in 1:49.16 to return $6.20 to win. Forever Unbridled qualified for the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Longines Distaff.
Race 7 was the $500,000 Ballerina, and By the Moon picked up her second Grade 1 win, holding off Highway Star by a head in a full stretch battle. By the Moon completed 7 furlongs in 1:22.97 with a sizzling final furlong in 12.07 seconds. By the Moon paid $13.00 to win, and he’s eligible for the $1 Million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint.
The $600,000 Forego Stakes was Race 9 and also 7 furlongs. Drefong crushed his competition again and nearly set a track record in 1:21.12. Drefong paid $4.30 to win as the 6-5 favorite. Drefong qualified for the $1 Million Las Vegas Dirt Mile Nov. 3 at Del Mar for the Breeders’ Cup.
The $1 Million Sword Dancer was much anticipated in Race 10, and Sadler’s Joy went last to first to secure his spot in the $4 Million Breeders’ Cup Longines Turf. Sadler’s Joy covered 1 ½ miles in 2:24.58 and paid $16.00 to win.
At Del Mar, the $200,000 Pat O’Brien Stakes also awarded a Breeders’ Cup berth to the winner, and Great Expectations rallied powerfully to win by 1 ½ lengths to return $11.40 as a 9-2 choice. He ran 7 furlongs in 1:21.08 and earned a fees paid entry to the Las Vegas Dirt Mile.
Race Winner Breeders’ Cup
Personal Ensign – Forever Unbridled – Longines Distaff
Ballerina – By the Moon – Filly & Mare Sprint
Forego – Drefong – Las Vegas Dirt Mile
Sword Dancer – Sadler’s Joy – Longines Turf
Pat O’Brien – Great Expectations – Las Vegas Dirt Mile
The Breeders’ Cup is Nov. 3-4 at Del Mar.