ARCADIA, Calif. (Nov. 5, 2016) – Ciglia Racing, Exline-Border, Gulliver Racing, Sharon Alesia et al’s Champagne Room ($69.20) blew past early pacesetter Noted and Quoted at the head of the stretch and then held off a late bid from Valadorna by three-quarters of a length to win the 33rd running of the $2 million 14 Hands Winery Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1), the first of nine World Championships races Saturday afternoon at Santa Anita Park.
Trained by Peter Eurton and ridden by Mario Gutierrez, Champagne Room covered the mile and a sixteenth on a fast track in 1:45.12. It is the first Breeders’ Cup victory for Eurton and second for Gutierrez, who won last year’s Juvenile on Nyquist.
It was the second victory in five starts for the Kentucky-bred daughter of Broken Vow.
14 HANDS WINERY BREEDERS’ CUP JUVENILE FILLIES QUOTES
Winning jockey Mario Gutierrez (Champagne Room) – “I had a perfect trip. She broke really sharp. I was able to settle behind the speed and when I asked her, she ran with all her heart today.”
Winning trainer Peter Eurton (Champagne Room) – “I wasn’t feeling utterly confident (coming down the stretch). She was actually moving pretty well. She was getting a little tired, but there wasn’t anyone catching her. I’m feeling pretty good right now. This means an awful lot to me.”
Second-place jockey Julien Leparoux (Valadorna) – “We had a pretty good trip, but there wasn’t much pace. I had to wait a little bit on the turn and I think the winner got away from us. She ran a big, big race.”
Second-place trainer Mark Casse (Valadorna) – “She ran great. She had a good trip and was maybe just a little bit late getting out with the soft fractions, but I was proud of her. It was the way I expected her to run. She’s a very good horse. She needed (the education she got in her last race) today.”
Third-place jockey Mike Smith (American Gal) – “We broke real bad and it cost me the race. That’s all it was.”
Third-place trainer Bob Baffert (American Gal) – “I thought she ran an incredible race considering how wide she had to go the whole way. She’s shown she can go a distance and what a good horse she is.”
Breeders’ Cup and Santa Anita Park