LOUISVILLE – Bulletin kicked off the 35th edition of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships by popping out of the gate quickly and immediately grabbing a clear a lead then never looked back in winning the first running of the $1 million Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint at Churchill Downs on Friday.
Under grey but dry skies, Bulletin fended off a challenge by Chelsea Cloisters on the turn and pulled away in the stretch to prevail by 2 ¾ lengths.
So Perfect was third, followed by Queen of Bermuda. The 5-9-10 trifecta paid $2,905.40 for $2 while the 5-9-10-11 superfecta returned $2,548.99 for a 10-cent wager.
Sent off at 4-1 odds, Bulletin paid $10.60 to win. His only other start was a seven-length victory in a Sept. 29 maiden race at Gulfstream Park.
Bulletin is trained by seven-time Eclipse Award winner Todd Pletcher, who won his 10th Breeders’ Cup stakes and is now tied for fourth on the all-time wins list with Chad Brown and Bill Mott.
The victory at Churchill Downs brought back sweet memories for owners WinStar Farm and China Horse Club, which also owned Triple Crown winner Justify. SF Racing, which sold its racing rights to Justify to Starlight Racing, also owns a share of Bulletin.
Final time for the 5 ½ furlongs was 1:05.54
The Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint was the first of five Breeders’ Cup stakes for 2-year-olds under the series’ new “Future Stars Friday” format.
The initial running of the ungraded stakes originally featured two horses who earned free spots in the field through winning Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series “Win and You’re In” stakes. Strike Silver captured the Indian Summer at Keeneland and Shang Shang Shang prevailed in the Norfolk Stakes (G2) at Royal Ascot in June. However, Shang Shag Shang, trained by American Wesley Ward who sent out Chelsea Cloisters and the unplaced Stillwater Cove and Moonlight Romance, was scratched from the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint along with Comedy, Van Beethoven and Legends of War.
By Bob Ehalt