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The final Grade 1 at Keeneland highlighted an otherwise sleepy weekend as most major horses in training continued preparations for the 2021 Breeders’ Cup on November 5-6. Of the horses who did compete, here’s who we thought deserved to be the Three Stars of the Week:
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Trainer Chad Brown made it back-to-back weekends with his barn sweeping the exacta in a Keeneland Grade 1, following up last weekend’s First Lady triumph with Shantisara defeating stablemate Technical Analysis in Saturday’s Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup. Since joining Brown’s barn in the spring from Europe, the Irish-bred Shantisara has won 3 of 4 starts with stakes victories coming in the Pucker Up (G3) at Arlington Park and the Jockey Club Oaks Invitational at Belmont Park. Brown indicated that the American Oaks (G1) at Santa Anita Park on December 26 – the year’s final Grade 1 restricted to 3-year-old turf fillies – is her next intended start.
Mere minutes separated the Brown barn’s dual successes Saturday when Fluffy Socks took home the Sands Point Stakes (G2) at Belmont Park. Like Shantisara, the American Oaks seems to be the site of her next appearance. If not for a late run from another rival, Brown would’ve hit the exacta in this race, too. The ever-dangerous Chad Brown stable seems to be heating up right as the World Championships near.
A deluge falling from the sky couldn’t stop Change of Control from giving jockey Colby Hernandez and trainer Michelle Lovell their second graded stakes victory in Friday’s Buffalo Trace Franklin County Stakes (G3) at Keeneland. With the victory, Change of Control became the fourth horse to win the Giant’s Causeway during Keeneland’s Spring Meet and come back in the Fall Meet to win the Buffalo Trace Franklin County. She’s a fun mare to watch, especially at Keeneland.
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