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Shackleford nips Caleb's Posse in thrilling Met Mile

Shackleford held off a hard-charging Caleb's Posse by a nose in a dramatic Met Mile victory.

2011 Preakness winner Shackleford, last seen winning the G2 Churchill Downs Handicap on Kentucky Derby day, continued his winning 4-year-old campaign in a deep field in the G1 Met Mile that included G1 Carter Handicap winner Jackson Bend, G1 Cigar Mile winner To Honor and Serve, G2 Charles Town Classic winner Caixia Electronica, and Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile winner Caleb's Posse. Listed stakes winner Saginaw, looking to continue a 6-win streak, was also in for good measure.

Shackleford took the lead at the break, with Jackson Bend making an unusual early move to join him. To Honor and Serve rated just behind, with Caxia Electronica in fourth, Saginaw fifth. Caleb's Posse, as usual, was last in the early stages of the race.

On the turn, Saginaw and Caixia Electronia made outside moves, but Shackleford just shook them off as he powered into the stretch. Then, Caleb's Posse unleashed his powerful closing kick, inmhaling the field and catching Shackleford in deep stretch. The two battled stride-for-stride in the final furlong, but it was a game Shackleford who prevailed by a nose.

Shackleford was ridden by John Velazquez for trainer Dale Romans.  

 

“He broke so good, so I didn’t have to do much, and he was doing it easy,” said John Velazquez. “Even as they were chasing him, he was in hand the whole way and that’s what I liked about him. Because he was doing it so easy, I didn’t have to rush him.”

 

“I saw the shadow [of Caleb’s Posse] coming so I had to go real far out to get him,” Velazquez added. “I was wondering if somebody was in between and was thinking if nobody was there I was going to go straight out, and that’s what made me win, because when I came out, he put up a fight. [He dug back in] big time.”

 

 

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Older Comments about Shackleford nips Caleb's Posse in thrilling Met Mile...

The Shack!!!!
I'm still over the moon about Shackleford's last two wins in which he had to work for the win and instead of coming up short, he has started to put some wins together. He's a special horse, and I'm pulling for him to get Older Male this year and retire to stud a true champion. He already is, to me anyway.
this marks the beginning of the road to the breeders cup, the grandaddy of no. american racing.
Caleb's Posse deserves to win one of these races, three very tough loses. He seemed to be the only horse that closed any ground all day.
  • Show All 4 Comments
  • gelded1 · Caleb's Posse did indeed run a great race to close like he did against a speed favoring or close to the pace track bias · 1490 days ago
  • gelded1 · Caleb's Posse did indeed run a great race to close like he did against a speed favoring or close to the pace track bias · 1490 days ago
I was in the paddock today. Shack is GINORMOUS...
Way to go Shack. Heart pumping race. Loved it!!!!!
Minor detail here, Shack staved off getting nipped by Caleb. (can't help myself, mother was a teacher.)
Has to be close to a rugged 17h. He really is like a warhorse. If he keeps going like this, maybe they'd reconsider his retirement. Can you imagine, Shack as an adult?
WOW Fantastic...Love these two hard knockers.. THAS all the hype but CP and Shack much the best.
He does look bigger! He has filled out!! Anyone know how tall he is? I'm just curious :)
Shack is even bigger this year, awesome looking horse!
That was a great race. Forget how big Shack is, dwarfs the rest.
I was looking forward to this race all weekend and it did not disappoint me. I was worried Shack might have outpaced himself, especially with this strong field, but he hung on. Terrific!
Caleb's Posse and Shackleford head-to-head scoreboard now reads 2-2, with each horse taking home 1 big win.
Dirt Mile will probably be the best race of Breeders Cup Day. Incredibly deep field.

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