Ten of the Closest Calls in Breeders’ Cup Races
Ten of the Closest Calls in Breeders’ Cup Races: The Breeders Cup is full of races, horses, money, and emotions. Everyone loves the winners, even more often love the horse that comes out in the wrong side of a photo. Breeders’ Cup has seen multiple close calls, upsets, and runaway victories. As the 31st running of Breeders’ Cup approaches us on Friday, October 31t and Saturday, November 1st, lets take a look back at the most famous close calls of Breeders’ Cup.
2010 – Blame and Zenyatta (Classic) – Zenyatta was back in 2010 to defend her Classic title. No other horse since 2001 has won back-to-back Classic’s, and that still remains true. Blame was able to hold on, as Zenyatta got running just a stride too late. In her final race, she tasted defeat for the first and only time. Most loved her more than ever after that race. Her best race was the one she lost.
2003 – High Chaparral and Johar (Turf) – the Breeders’ Cup Turf is one race that the American horses normally lack expertise in. European invaders usually shine in this race. In the 2003 edition, two horses showed their true colors. In the only dead heat to ever happen in the Breeders’ Cup, ever, it happened in 2003, on the turf.
2011 – Hansen and Union Rags (Juvenile) – had Union rags not drifted so hard in the stretch, the names Hansen and Union Rags may very well be switched. Hansen was able to lead wire to wire, and it was one of the hardest tests he would have to face in his relatively short career. Union Rags would go on to win the 2012 Belmont Stakes.
2013 – Mucho Macho Man and Will Take Charge (Classic) – the Classic was seemingly open to any winner. Fort Larned was hoping to repeat his 2012 victory over Mucho Macho Man, but the latter turned the tables on his foe. Instead, he turned away three-year-old champion Will Take Charge and European invader Declaration of War. The three races in close contention, and Mucho Macho Man prevailed victorious by about an inch.
2011 – Court Vision and Turallure (Mile) – Goldikova was back for her fourth straight year, in hopes of winning the Mile an unprecedented four times. She had already taken the three-peat. She looked a winner a furlong from home, but was passed late by Court Vision and Turallure. The race looks to be a dead heat. The photo was found to be in favor of Court Vision.
2012 – Shanghai Bobby and He’s Had Enough (Juvenile) – Shanghai Bobby was the star juvenile of 2012. He was undefeated going into the BC Juvenile. He hadn’t really been tested until this race either. He’s Had Enough ran the race of his life that day, but Shanghai Bobby was able to fight back just enough to hold on by a nose over the grey colt.
1990 – Safely Kept and Dayjur (Sprint) – The filly Safely Kept had barely lost the Sprint in 1989. She was determined to take the 1990 edition. Speedy Dayjur was hoping to deny her the Sprint again. Inside the final furlong, Dayjur was pulling away, until the unthinkable happened. Dayjur jumped the shadow that the grandstand cast upon the racetrack! He then jumped the shadow at the wire! Safely Kept finally got her win.
2001 – Tiznow and Sakhee (Classic) – a little over a month after the terror attacks on New York and the Pentagon, the American people were looking for a hero. Tiznow proved to be that hero by taking a second consecutive Breeders’ Cup Classic over Godolphin owned Sakhee, by a desperate nose. America prevailed, and so did Tiznow.
2013 – Groupie Doll and Judy the Beauty (F&M Sprint) – Groupie Doll had seemed to lose a step in 2013, but she, nonetheless, returned to seek a second consecutive F&M Sprint title. She dug deep to win, but she won over a surging Judy the Beauty and Dance Card, who finished third.
2013 – Ria Antonia and She’s a Tiger (Juvenile Fillies) – Ria Antonia did not actually cross the wire first, but finished a nose behind She’s a Tiger. In the stretch, She’s a Tiger drifted out ever so slightly, and steward believed it was enough to cause Ria Antonia to finish second. After being placed first, Ria Antonia’s connections rejoiced. She’s a Tiger did win the two-year-old championship though.
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