LOUISVILLE, KY – Conrad Farms’ Shamrock Rose shocked the betting world after she executed a long drive between foes and got up just at the wire to win Saturday’s Grade 1, $1,000,000 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint at Churchill Downs.
Breaking from the far outside post 14 at odds of nearly 26/1 under Irad Ortiz, Jr., Shamrock Rose took back and trailed the field from the rear and saved ground early while Selcourt blazed out from along the rail and posted fractions of :21.89 and :44.99. Still near the rear as she exited the far turn, the Mark Casse trainee began rallying steadily past her foes until she had collared new leader Chalon. In the shadow of the wire, Shamrock Rose crept past to prevail by a head in a final time of 1:23.13 for the 7-furlong sprint over the fast main track.
“I let her be happy,” said Ortiz, Jr. “She settled nice for me. She was, like, fourth, and when I dropped in and got through horses, she came running.”
Thought caught at the wire, Chalon held on by a neck over a fast-closing Anonymity, herself just a head past the 4/5 favorite Marley’s Freedom, who was unable to overcome a wide trip from post 13. Golden Mischief nosed out Happy Like a Fool for fifth, while Finley’sluckycharm was 3/4 of a length past Highway Star for seventh. Mia Mischief, Skye Diamonds, Stormy Embrace, Selcourt, Kirby’s Penny, and Miss Sunset completed the order of finish.
Dream Pauline was scratched as an Also Eligible.
Shamrock Rose’s win was her fourth straight, including an 18/1 upset just two weeks ago in the Grade 2 Raven Run Stakes at Keeneland. The 3-year-old daughter of First Dude now carries a record of 10-5-2-1 with earnings of $917,687.
“It was a tough race, but she’s a good horse,” Casse said. “I told Irad I don’t know if she’s good enough, but she’ll give you everything she has, and she’s good. It goes back to (Hall of Fame trainer) Allen Jerkens, who always said, ‘Run them when they’re good,’ so we came back in two weeks.”
Shamrock Rose returned $53.80 to win, $21.40 to place, and $11.20 to show. Chalon brought back $14.60 to place and $9.20 to show, while Anonymity paid $15.60 to show.