Spun to Run will flaunt his speed in the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile

October 22, 2019 02:11pm
Spun to Run will flaunt his speed in the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile
Photo: EQUI-PHOTO

Jockey and trainer haven’t always agreed on Spun to Run’s ideal race strategy, but in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, they both seem amicable to sending early a 3-year-old stakes winner who posted gaudy numbers in his most-recent start.

Rider Paco Lopez came back from Spun to Run’s fifth-place Pennsylvania Derby (G1) effort telling trainer Carlos Guerrero he should have pushed the colt to the lead. Returning in the Oct. 12 M.P. Ballezzi Appreciation Mile Stakes, Spun to Run took a forward position and won for fun while registering a 110 Beyer Speed Figure, best for a 3-year-old this season at a mile or farther.

Guerrero confirmed Tuesday he has pre-entered the son of Hard Spun, a $64,000 purchase campaigned by Robert Donaldson, in the $1 million Dirt Mile as opposed to stretching out for more money in the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic.

“If I go against older horses, I want to go a mile, not a mile and a quarter,” Guerrero said. “Even though Paco misread this horse (in the Pennsylvania Derby), I think he’s right about him being a miler. I think he can be right there with Omaha Beach, and if I get a second, I take it.”

Spun to Run looks like a pace factor in the Nov. 2 race at Santa Anita Park along with Omaha Beach and Mr. Money, who set the fractions in the Pennsylvania Derby.

Guerrero’s runner is a late bloomer on the 3-year-old scene having missed the heart of Triple Crown season recovering from an entrapped epiglottis, a breathing issue. Rather than pursue the Preakness Stakes as they'd hoped, connections had to back off following a March 23 allowance score.

Spun to Run returned in an ambitious spot, finishing third to Maximum Security in the Haskell Invitational (G1). He then became a graded winner of Parx’s Sept. 2 Smarty Jones Stakes (G3) with a narrow victory over Gray Magician.

No other Pennsylvania Derby runner has raced since the Sept. 21 event, but Guerrero dropped the colt in class and cut him back to eight panels in the 
M.P. Ballezzi. The move resulted in a 6 3/4-length victory in hand.

“That was just to show people that he’s a really, really nice horse,” Guerrero said. “What they saw in the Pennsylvania wasn’t him at all. In the next race, he galloped.”

A layoff was considered leaving the M.P. Ballezzi, but Guerrero has seen Spun to Run training “as good as before or better.”

“He looks great. He’s eating great,” the trainer said. “His throat was giving him issues before, and now that’s not even bothering him. Everything’s perfect. Is he going to keep going right now?

“I don’t know what to expect, but training-wise he’s doing really good.”

Spun to Run will work once more at Parx before shipping to Santa Anita. Guerrero breezed his only prior Breeders’ Cup entrant, Golden Mystery, at Churchill Downs before the 2011 Filly & Mare Sprint. She went too fast, then finished seventh on the big day.

“I’ll pretty much take him over there and baby him,” Guerrero said of Spun to Run. “I have him pretty tight. He’s ready.”

 

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