TrainerBrendan P. Walsh
“He’s a very special horse. I’ve been around a lot of good horses, and good horses breathe different air,” trainer Brendan Walsh said after his charge Maxfield scored an impressive victory in the Claiborne Breeders' Futurity (G1) at Keeneland Oct. 5.
The victory, from last to first, earned Maxfield a berth in the TVG Breeders' Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita Nov. 1 as a part of the “Win & You're In” Challenge Series. The bay colt used the same last-to-first tactic when he won at first asking at Churchill a month earlier.
A homebred of the global powerhouse Godolphin, he settled at the rear under jockey Jose Ortiz in the mile and sixteenth event, then started picking off rivals up the backstretch. When favored Gouverneur Morris took control off the far turn, Maxfield was in full flight on the outside. He swept by Gouverneur Morris at the head of the stretch and drew off to win by open lengths with ease.
“He’s a very nice horse and he’s very smart,” Ortiz said. “He broke slow the first time, took dirt and came running at Churchill. Today, he did the same thing. Broke a bit slow, relaxed and when I asked him to go, he was there for me the whole time.”
“I thought he might take a run or two to break his maiden, but we knew he was a super-talented horse,” his trainer said from the winner's circle. “He overcame a lot the first day we ran him, and he came out of that race doing so good. To come back in three weeks for a horse that’s only run once is a big ask, but he answers every question.”
Walsh, a native of County Cork, Ireland, got his start in the racing business exercising horses for Godolphin at Kildangan Stud, that operation's Irish base. Maxfield awarded Walsh the first Grade 1 of his training career.
"I always knew (winning my first Grade 1) would be special, but to win it here for (Godolphin), it's extra special," Walsh said. "Fantastic. Indescribable. These people, I've worked on and off for them since I was a kid. They've been a huge influence on my career, so it's extra special to win it for them.”
Maxfield's sire, Street Sense, ran third in the 2006 Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland before posting a 15-1 upset in that year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile.
- October 23, 2019
McKinzie, Code of Honor, Midnight Bisou, Bricks and Mortar and Magical Lead 188 Horses Pre-Entered for 2019 Breeders’ Cup World Championships
Led by Whitney (G1) winner McKinzie, Travers Stakes (G1) and Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) winner Code of Honor, standout filly Midnight Bisou, multiple Grade 1-winning turf star Bricks and Mortar, and Qipco Champions Stakes (G1) winner Magical (IRE), 188 horses, including 47 from overseas, have been pre-entered for the 2019 Breeders’ Cup World Championships.
- October 28, 2019
McKinzie, Midnight Bisou and Bricks and Mortar Lead Cast of 168 Horses Entered in 36th Breeders' Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Friday and Saturday
Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman’s McKinzie has been installed as the 3-1 morning-line favorite in a field of 11 3-year-olds and up for Saturday’s $6 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) to be run at 1 ¼ miles on the main track, the climax of the 36th Breeders’ Cup World Championship races to be run Friday and Saturday at Santa Anita Park.
- December 5, 2019
Godolphin Repeats as John Deere Award Winner Honoring Outstanding Breeders of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships and the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series
Rewarded for wins by its progeny on three continents, Godolphin, one of the world’s most prominent racing and breeding establishments, has repeated as the winner of the John Deere Award honoring the outstanding breeder of the 2019 Breeders’ Cup World Championships and the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series.