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Cigar Mile 2013: Breeders’ Cup Battle

Goldencents wins 2013 BC Dirt Mile
The purse incentives offered by NYRA for the Cigar Mile have turned the November 30th grade one stake into a battle of Breeders’ Cup participants. The Cigar Mile offers a minimum purse of $500,000, but Groupie Doll and Goldencents will run for a $1,000,000 purse because they won a Breeders’ Cup race.
 
Winners of a grade one stake, like Alpha, Capo Bastone, and Verrazano will be competing for a gross purse of $750,000. Those three horses did also run in the Breeders’ Cup, but they get their purse incentive from their grade one victories.
 
As an early preview of the Cigar Mile, which is run around one turn on the Aqueduct main track, let’s do some Breeders’ Cup trip handicapping by looking at video and reviewing the running lines from the Daily Racing Form charts.
 
Goldencents, Verrazano, and Alpha ran in this year’s Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile, in which Goldencents earned a 105 Beyer Speed Figure for his victory. Verrazano ran fourth as the beaten favorite, 7¾ lengths behind, and Alpha finished eighth, behind by more than 13 lengths.
 
Watch the video of the Dirt Mile and also read the description of their trips from the official chart.
 
 
Goldencents was hard sent from the gate to gain a forward position, dueled outside of Broadway Empire through the opening quarter mile, spurted clear and angled in nearing the five eighths pole, was joined from the outside by Broadway Empire after a half, took pressure past the three eighths marker, moved away under urging in the lane, wandered outward a bit leaving the three sixteenths pole, was straightened to widen a furlong out then held firm under a drive.
 
Verrazano, in close pursuing between runners mid way on the first turn, was urged along chasing down the backstretch, came five wide for the drive, drifted out a bit inside the sixteenth pole and had a mild kick.
 
Alpha was fidgety in the gate just prior to the start, broke slowly, lagged back, saved ground into the lane and could not recover.
 
Groupie Doll earned a 107 BSF when she defended her crown in the seven furlong Breeders Cup Filly and Mare Sprint.
 
 
Groupie Doll, five wide under a snug hold early, edged up four wide within herself nearing the far turn, bid to join the leaders after a half mile, dueled three deep to the quarter pole, took over straightening for the wire, kicked away when put to strong urging leaving the three sixteenths marker, had her rider switch to the left stick in the vicinity of the sixteenth pole and dug in gamely to hold off Judy the Beauty.
 
In 2012 Groupie Doll finished second in the Cigar Mile earning a 109 BSF, one point higher than the 108 she earned winning her first BC F/M Sprint just three weeks earlier. This year there are four weeks between the two races because Thanksgiving falls so late in the calendar in 2013.
 
Here is the replay of the Groupie Doll’s narrow defeat by Stay Thirsty in 2012 Cigar Mile followed by her running line from the DRF race chart.
 
 
Groupie Doll sat patiently perched three wide just off the front runners, crept up to draw alongside them leaving the midway point on the turn, was the widest of three spinning into the stretch, got set down to a vigorous drive, both with the whip and being hand ridden, gained a narrow lead at the end of the furlong grounds, bobbed and weaved ever so slightly while making her way to the wire, was in the midst of doing so when so brushed late with the top one, dug in gamely to the end, but got denied.
 
Of the other three horses that are probable for the Cigar field, Capo Bastone and Gentlemen’s Bet also ran in a Breeders’ Cup race. Forty Tales is a multiple graded stakes winner.
 
Capo Bastone finished last in the field of 13 in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint at 8.8-1. His effort was described in the DRF chart: Capo Bastone was in good position chasing the pace outside a rival, came out in the stretch and weakened.
 
Gentlemen's Bet finished third, a length and a half behind Secret Circle, in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint at odds of 9.1-1. He does not have a grade one victory and will compete for the $500,000 purse.  Gentlemen’s Bet prompted the pace inside of Sum of the Parts, assumed command into the turn, took pressure to the quarter pole, spurted away inside the three sixteenths pole, was taken on a sixteenth out and faded.
 
Forty Tales comes into the Cigar Mile off a second place behind Clearly Now in the Oct. 26th Bold Ruler (G3) sprint at Belmont Park, a race in which Clearly Now earned a 109 BSF. Earlier in the year Forty Tales won three graded stakes in a row at distances ranging from 6½ furlongs to a mile. Forty Tales is the only horse in the probable field that has not run in the Breeders’ Cup. 

 

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Older Comments about Cigar Mile 2013: Breeders’ Cup Battle...

And AQU is a lot deeper than Santa Anita.
Of course, I meant a football FIELD longer...260 feet to be exact.
Remember, Aqueduct's stretch is almost a football longer than Santa Anita's. That could make a big difference.
I like Goldencents and Bejarano. A win here puts him in the thick of best 3year old or sprint Eclipse. Three grade 1's will be tough to beat. Two grade 1's against older. Two different surfaces and raced the entire year Jan 6 to Nov 30
equineplay--Great point about the long campaign for Goldencents!
I like Goldencents and Bejarano. A win here puts him in the thick of best 3year old or sprint Eclipse. Three grade 1's will be tough to beat. Two grade 1's against older. Two different surfaces and raced the entire year Jan 6 to Nov 30
Right now I see Goldencents taking this one with a small challenge by Groupie, unless Alpha throws a complete curveball like he did over the summer. Capo Bastone, Forty Tales and Verrazano I see how reason to worry about.
To early to start making inquiries,I think he lost it at the start.The turn incident had no real effect. On that treadmill ,you had to be on the rail.Bejarano(noted for gagging in the big ones)rode a smart one.He busted out Goldy like there was no tommorrow.Thats right ,he did win the Wood over the seedy surface. The good thing is that if he does run,they learned their lesson.Need to be aggressive.Did you look at the Baffert babies i told you about this weekend?
That sounds right, Pal Joey, and getting back to Verrazano, what’s the word from JV? Did V get the wind knocked out of him when he got *smushed* on the clubhouse turn? Did he return to NY as good as he left? We know he likes it on the seedy surface :) >> And Mike in SB, yes on both counts!
Buck,i do not know its' validity or if some are pulling my leg. I was told that Belmont(being situated in an East to West direction and with the placement of the Grandstand. The shadows it would cause on the track during the winter time could be dangerous.Aqueduct is in A North to South Direction.Like i said, do not know how true that is.
Andy there you go again,following Jennas cue.Enough with the complliments already(LOL)
Sad part is Aqueduct used to be a nice facility. I believe this is why Kay was put on the NYRA to sell Aqueduct and get funding for Belmont's complete renovation. Kay had experience is selling off Toys R Us in pieces and then taking the rest if the company private which is what they want to do with NYRA. I will be sad to see Aqueduct go as I cut my teeth their years ago and it has great memories of every top horses that raced there.
I once read a description that the grandstand at AQU reminded him of "the bar scene from Star Wars".
He would be doing the City a big favor.Dumbest thing currently,2 major racetracks within 7 miles of each other.They should sell the proprety to the Casinos who want it,and are willing to renovate Belmont Park into a winterized Facility.
There's no doubt if Cuomo gets his way this dump is on its way out. He wants to turn this land into a large convention center along with the casino.
Let me add that Jenna was very complimentary of the facilities with that description.I usually use other words to describe it.This being a family show,i will refrain.
If i am around i might be there, Wow Jenna has redefined Aqueduct,has caught on all the way to where you are.Before i invest in VZ. need to see who is running.
TM, are you going to be there chasing Verrazano while jenna is doing her thing between the Remsen and the Cigar Mile @ seedy Aqueduct?
Mary and EP, I could never figure out why they named a G1 turf race after Sword Dancer. He raced 39 times and only three of those times on turf and they were his 36th, 37th and 39th starts. The real irony is that he never won a race on turf.
I guess I’ll try and diffuse the sarcasm before it reaches its usual level. Spoons might not be sharp, but if they’re big enough they can give a brat a pretty good attitude adjustment when applied across the backside.

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