ELMONT, NY – J. Kirk and Judy Robison’s Jackie’s Warrior continued his domination over the 2020 juvenile class, uncorking a massive effort to win Saturday’s $250,000 Champagne Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park.
The Champagne is a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” event, with Jackie’s Warrior receiving an automatic berth in the TVG Juvenile Presented by the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance at Keeneland this November.
Jackie’s Warrior broke from post 4 under Joel Rosario as the 4/5 favorite in the field of six 2-year-old colts and went straight to the lead.
Reinvestment Risk and Midnight Bourbon tracked closely as Jackie’s Warrior posted opening fractions of :23.12 and :46.54.
Reinvestment Risk made his move midway through the far turn and began ranging up alongside Jackie’s Warrior, but the bettors’ choice easily kicked clear at the top of the stretch.
Never asked for his best, the Steve Asmussen trainee crossed a wrapped-up 5 1/2 lengths clear while completing the one-turn fast dirt mile in 1:35.42.
“He’s a beautiful horse; a big horse, and it looks like everything he does is easy for him,” Rosario said. “I was very confident that he could get the mile. I felt confident the whole way. He just enjoyed what he was doing.”
Reinvestment Risk and Midnight Bourbon crossed a strung-out second and third.
Civil War took a three-way photo for fourth by a pair of necks over Run Casper Run and Ambivalent, respectively, to complete the order of finish.
Jackie’s Warrior’s win was his fourth from as many career starts, following back-to-back Saratoga stakes scores in the Saratoga Special (G2) and the Hopeful (G1). The Maclean’s Music colt, purchased for $95,000 as a yearling, has now earned $402,564 and will head to the World Championships as a likely favorite.
“He had an easy half-mile and I’m surprised he came home that quick,” said Asmussen’s Belmont Park-based assistant Toby Sheets. “He’s very impressive. He’s a class act and does everything correct. The one-turn mile certainly didn’t seem to bother him.”
Jackie’s Warrior returned $3.70 to win and $2.10 to place, while Reinvestment Risk paid $2.10 to place. There was no show betting.