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Target or Prep, QE2 Will Sort Europe’s Top Milers

As one of Europe’s premier Mile races, the Queen Elizabeth II (G1) Stakes at Ascot has understandably had a significant bearing on the Breeders’ Cup. Its running on the final weekend of September enables it to be both target and realistic prep for end-of-year international bounty hunters.

The last two winners of the race — Raven’s Pass and Rip van Winkle — were both recipients of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” ticket for the TVG Mile Division yet both, somewhat ironically, eschewed the obvious in favor of a tilt at the Classic, with dramatically varying results.

This year’s race looks to be a somewhat more conventional springboard, and not just because the Classic returning to a regular main track makes that race less obviously appealing for a pacy European turf miler.

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