Photo: Eclipse Sportswire - Alex Evers
a day that could not have started any worse for Bob Baffert he rebounded to score his
first Breeders’ Cup victory in quite some time. Coming into the day team Baffert
had high hopes and expectations for entries in multiple divisions,
including the overwhelming Classic favorite, Game On Dude. Tap it Rich was also
one of those horses. However, it was a different Bob Baffert entry that would earn
the 2013 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile title.
post time three horses stood out as the likely winners. Rightfully earned,
these three contenders also deserved the attention they received at the betting
window. Although Tap it Rich had only raced one time in his career prior to
today, that win was impressive enough to make him the second choice. Close
behind was Strong Mandate while the morning line favorite Havana remained the number one choice.
the post position draw there was speculation regarding how Havana and Strong Mandate would do considering they would be starting from the far outside, post
position 12 and 13. However, after they broke clean and out towards the lead,
they were racing in a position very similar to their Graded Stakes wins.
into the first turn Conquest Titan took to the lead from post position seven
and drew down to the rail. Between horses was Rum Point with Havana to his near
the two Havana had the clear edge over Strong Mandate going into the first turn as he broke
brilliantly from the gate. Strong Mandate was caught wide through the first
turn before Joel Rosario urged him pass Havana heading into the backstretch. Strong
Mandate continued to push the leaders Conquest Titan and Rum Point before overtaking them as they headed into the final turn. He also led the field through a blistering
pair of fractions, 22.66, 45.38.
in right behind the leaders through the backstretch was We Miss Artie who found
great position through the first turn along the rail and Havana on his outside.
As the turn towards home progressed it was Havana that made his move. We Miss
Artie chased while Conquest Titan and Rum Point began to fade.
they hit the top of the lane Havana moved by Strong Mandate on the outside.
But, because Strong Mandate was fighting hard not to let him get away completely,
it looked like it would be a two horse race between the morning line favorites.
It wasn’t long before John Velazquez's replacement, Gary Stevens,
and Havana proved they were stronger. As they gained more than a one length advantage New Year’s Day came
barreling down stretch along the rail.
On a speed favoring track all weekend, the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile proved there was
still a place for a horse racing mid pack.
Hanging between 9th through 6th from the start and along
the backstretch, New Years’ Day improved to 4th through the final
turn before he found another gear when it mattered most.
looked to be in control of this race and the strategy was flawless. But, in an unexpected effort it was New Year’s Day that drove it home the hardest
and got the best of him.
Mandate was able to hold on for third as We Miss Artie weakened down the
stretch and Bond Holder made the jump to complete the superfecta and finish 4th. Tap it Rich proved too anxious in the beginning of the race and possibly not ready for Grade 1 stakes as he didn't make much of an impact and finished 6th.
final margin of victory for New Year’s Day over Havana was 1 ¼ length and the
winning time was 1:43.52.
win was the second Breeders’ Cup Juvenile score for Bob Baffert (Midshipman 2008)
and first for owners Mary and Gary West and jockey Martin Garcia.
Breeders' Cup Juvenile | One And One Sixteenth Miles
Track | Condition: Fast
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show
4 New Year's Day Martin
Garcia 23.00 9.20 6.60
13 Havana Gary L. Stevens 4.60 3.40
14 Strong Mandate Joel Rosario 6.00
ran: 5 - Bond Holder , 6 - Tap It Rich , 3 - Mexikoma , 10 - We Miss Artie , 2
- Dance With Fate , 12 - Diamond Bachelor , 1 - Smarty's Echo , 11 - Medal
Count , 9 - Rum Point , 8 - Conquest Titan
Exacta 4-13 $53.90
Superfecta 4-13-14-5 $3,807.60
Trifecta 4-13-14 $476.10
Breeder: Clearsky Farms
Owner: West, Gary and Mary
Trainer: Bob Baffert