ARCADIA, Calif. (Nov. 5, 2016) – WinStar Farm, Wachtel Stable and Gary Barber’s Tourist ($26.80) held off a late charge from defending champion Tepin by a half-length to win the 33rd running of the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) for 3-year-olds and up Saturday afternoon at Santa Anita Park.
Trained by Bill Mott and ridden by Joel Rosario, Tourist covered the mile on a firm turf course in 1:31.71, breaking the Breeders’ Cup record of 1:31.78 set by Wise Dan at Santa Anita in 2013.
It is the first Breeders’ Cup victory for the winning partnership, the ninth for Mott and fifth for Rosario and the first in the race for the trainer and rider.
Tourist, a 5-year-old son of two-time Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Tiznow, was making his third start in the Mile having finished eighth last year at Keeneland and 13th in the 2013 Championships at Santa Anita.
BREEDERS’ CUP MILE QUOTES
Winning jockey Joel Rosario (Tourist) – “It was a good trip, a perfect trip. It looked like they were going fast up front and I just wanted to save ground the whole way around and not have to stop him at any point in the race. I had to take a little hold turning for home to keep my position, but after that he got a clear run.”
Winning trainer Bill Mott (Tourist) – “Just a great trip. He bailed us out. We had three that didn’t run so well and we had one last chance. He ran beautifully.”
Second-place jockey Julien Leparoux (Tepin) – “We had a good race. I was right behind the favorite and was in a good spot. She made a run but the winner got a dream trip on the inside. What else can you say about her? She had an incredible year. We were hoping she would end the year with a win but it’s been a pleasure to ride her.
“I’m not sure if they are going to retire her but it has been a pleasure being on her. It’s been a thrilling year. It’s great.”
Second-place trainer Mark Casse (Tepin) – “She ran a huge race. Everybody was counting her out and she showed she’s still got it.”
Third-place jockey Rafael Bejarano (Midnight Storm) – “I had a beautiful trip, but the only thing that concerned me was that we drew a bad post which forced me to ask him a little bit earlier to attempt to get clear. He tired a little bit down the lane, but I am very proud of my horse and his big effort.”
Third-place trainer Phil D’Amato (Midnight Storm) – “He got like the best trip of all time. My horse ran well; he just got beat by two nice horses. Very pleased with the effort. I thought it was a strong edition of the Mile.”
Fourth-place trainer Shug McGaughey (Ironicus) – “He’s probably not as quick, now that he’s a bit older and they were flying up front. Despite being as far back as he was, I thought our rider had him in a good position. He started to make a run around the final turn, but the horse wasn’t quite ready, so he had to wait a little longer to start his run. He put in a good finish, but we probably could have used a little longer distance.”
Six-place jockey Harry Bentley (Limato, favorite) – “We got in a good position. He possibly didn’t come around the final bend as well as he could. Quite possibly he was not at his best today.”
Six-place trainer Henry Candy (Limato, favorite) – “He was possibly a bit green early on. We have no excuses. Everything seemed to go right.”
Breeders’ Cup and Santa Anita Park