It has been said that every horse’s best distance can be measured with a yardstick. It took plenty of yardsticks to measure Shirocco’s – it was 1 1/2 miles. In an era when few horses ran that distance, this German homebred of Baron Georg von Ullmann won six times at 1 1/2 miles in 10 lifetime attempts. Trained in 2005 in France by Andre Fabre, Shirocco made only two starts prior to the Breeders’ Cup. His second was a strong 4th place finish in the prestigious Group 1 Prix de l’ Arc de Triomphe.
Jockey Christophe Soumillon aboard Shirocco (GER) did not chase the “Rabbit” in the race – Shake the Bank who was sent out to help the chances of stablemate Better Talk Now. He reeled in the pacesetter and held off a challenge from champion English Channel at the quarter pole to pull away by 1 3/4 lengths.