Shadwell Turf Mile upset propels Next Shares to Breeders' Cup
Courtesy of Marty McGee of DRF.com
LEXINGTON, Ky. – One surprise followed another Saturday at Keeneland when Tyler Gaffalione guided Next Shares through a rail opening en route to a 3 1/4-length victory in the 33rd running of the Grade 1, $1 million Shadwell Turf Mile, the showcase event of the 17-day fall meet.
Racing about five lengths off the pace most of the way while saving ground from post 1, Next Shares was unimpeded when launching his run approaching the quarter pole. His 23-1 upset came some 40 minutes after Knicks Go won the Breeders’ Futurity at 70-1. Further accentuating an afternoon of big mutuels was Great Wide Open, who held second behind Next Shares in the Shadwell at 81-1.
“I was a little closer than I thought I would be, but he was running so easily, I didn’t want to take anything away from him,” said Gaffalione, the Florida-based standout whose lone prior Grade 1 score also came in Kentucky, aboard Salty in the La Troienne in May at Churchill Downs.
Next Shares, a 5-year-old Kentucky-bred by Archarcharch, finished a two-turn mile in 1:36.97 over a turf course rated good and returned $48.80 to win with his fifth victory from 20 career starts. The dark bay gelding was coming off a win in the restricted Old Friends Stakes last month at Kentucky Downs.
Next Shares is owned by the partnership of Michael and Jules Iavarone; Jerry McClanahan; Christopher Dunn; William Marasa; Ritchie Robershaw; and Mark Taylor. He is based in Southern California with trainer Richard Baltas, who was on hand.
Next Shares earned a Win and You’re In berth toward the Nov. 3 Breeders’ Cup Mile at Churchill Downs, and trainer Richard Baltas indicated the free ticket would indeed be used.
“It was a breakthrough race at Kentucky Downs,” said Baltas, a perennial leading trainer on the Southern California circuit.
“He won pretty easy last time. We took a shot here. Obviously he was training unbelievable, a credit to everyone that works with the horse. We got a great trip. I thought we were a little close in the beginning, but that’s why you don’t tell the jockeys too much.”
Before 24,142 fans who turned out in sweltering conditions, Heart to Heart set fractions of 23.67 seconds, 47.59, and 1:12.68, with Voodoo Song giving closest pursuit. Leaving the half-mile pole, Heart to Heart temporarily shook clear, with Great Wide Open picking up the chase, but Next Shares had all the momentum – and Gaffalione was only too happy to slip through.
“I had a lot of horse while I was getting there,” he said. “I was just hoping it would stay open long enough.”
Quarbaan rallied from well back to be third, 1 1/2 lengths behind Great Wide Open. Then came Analyze It, the only 3-year-old in the field and the surprise 2-1 favorite, followed by Big Score, Mr. Misunderstood, Synchrony, Almanaar, Heart to Heart, Multiplier, Bound for Nowhere, Voodoo Song, and Imperative. Divisidero was a late scratch at the starting gate, leaving a field of 13.
The $2 exacta (1-3) paid $1,968.20, the $1 trifecta (1-3-7) returned $7,756, and the 10-cent superfecta (1-3-7-9) was worth $12,284.02.
Predictably, giant payoffs resulted in the multi-race wagers that ended with the Shadwell. A 50-cent pick four paid $19,350.15 (from a pool of $742,450), and four winning 50-cent tickets on the 50-cent pick five were worth $131,533.65 apiece (pool, $619,106).
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