The globetrotting Pilsudski only made one Breeders’ Cup appearance, and like he did in many countries, he left his mark. The late-maturing Irish-bred managed to win only two races in his first two seasons, but had a breakout year in 1996. In his fourth start, he was teamed up with jockey Walter Swinburn who survived an early season accident in Hong Kong where he was nearly killed. They joined forces to win a Group 3 in Ireland, a Group 1 in Germany and, at 22 to 1, finished 2nd in the prestigious Prix de l’ Arc de Triomphe in France prior to their Breeders’ Cup start.
In a star-studded field, Pilsudski went off at odds of 14 to 1. Swinburn tucked him in behind horses and waited patiently for an opening and when he saw daylight they swept through and held quality runners Singspiel and Swain at bay to the wire.