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Tuesday’s Trackside Breeders’ Cup Report


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By Steve Sherack

LOUISVILLE, Ky – With Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas leading the cavalry charge aboard his stable pony, there was no shortage of action on another chilly morning beneath the lights during the special Breeders’ Cup training window at Churchill Downs Tuesday.

Already boasting a Breeders’ Cup-leading 20 victories, Lukas was out keeping a close eye on Calumet Farm homebred Derby Date (Will Take Charge), who is listed at odds of 30-1 on the morning-line for the Juvenile.

The ageless 83-year-old continues to make the rounds throughout the week off the track in Louisville as well, promoting his new book Sermon on the Mount, an absolute must-have for any racing fan.

Legendary former football head coach Bill Parcells will have the yellow-and-green colors of his August Dawn Farm carried by GIII Pilgrim S. winner Forty Under (Uncle Mo) (Juvenile Turf), who was led out for training by conditioner Jeremiah Englehart.

Wesley Ward’s most recent Royal Ascot conqueror Shang Shang Shang (Shanghai Bobby) (Juvenile Turf Sprint), a last out winner over the boys in the G2 Norfolk S. June 21, bounded onto the track with very good energy, as did the comebacking ‘TDN Rising Star’ Selcourt (Tiz Wonderful) (F/M Sprint), most recently seen dominating the GII Santa Monica S. Mar. 24.

Unbeaten ‘TDN Rising Star’ Complexity (Maclean’s Music) and Code of Honor (Noble Mission {GB}), one-two across the track in Belmont’s GI Champagne S. Oct. 6, both stood by the turn and took in the hectic scene for a few minutes, which included another spirited gallop from the wildly popular diminutive Sprint favorite Imperial Hint (Imperialism).

Trainer Mark Casse watched by the rail as ‘TDN Rising Star’ Wonder Gadot (Medaglia d’Oro) (Distaff) continued to live up to her ‘Wonder Woman’ moniker, repeatedly attempting to jump throughout her gallop down the backstretch for the second straight day.

“She’s been giving a lot of good photo-ops this week,” Casse said with a laugh. “That’s her though–she flies through the air. She just has so much energy.”

The striking gray coat of Disco Partner (Disco Rico) (Turf Sprint) and the flaxen mane of the chestnut 2-year-old Current (Curlin) (Juvenile Turf) were only to be outdone by another stunning sunrise beneath the Twin Spires Tuesday as temperatures once again hovered in the low 40s.

There was still plenty to take in following the private Breeders’ Cup training session, too, as the Classic-bound ‘TDN Rising Star’ Pavel (Creative Cause) made his way out over a very congested racetrack at 7:50 a.m.

Other big names spotted sporting Breeders’ Cup saddle towels later in the morning included: the powerhouse Godolphin duo of Thunder Snow (Ire) (Helmet {Aus}) (Classic) and Talismanic (GB) (Medaglia d’Oro) (Turf); ultra-talented 2-year-old fillies Jaywalk (Cross Traffic) (Juvenile Fillies), unbeaten ‘TDN Rising Star’ Newspaperofrecord (Ire) (Lope de Vega {Ire}) (Juvenile Fillies Turf) and Sippican Harbor (Orb) (Juvenile Fillies); and the speedy Kentucky Derby pacesetter Promises Fulfilled (Shackleford), who is slated to take on his elders in the Sprint.

As if that all wasn’t enough, the highlight of the morning didn’t come until the turf course was open for training shortly after 9:30 a.m., with the brilliant two-time Arc heroine Enable (GB) (Nathaniel {Ire}) receiving the much-deserved rockstar treatment with photographers lined up along the outer rail by the dozen recording her every move.

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