Stuart Janney still has a bottle containing dirt from the old Keeneland surface that always gave his
But while Janney likes the new Polytrack, his star racehorse,
Carriage Trail, might like it even more. She won the Juddmonte
Spinster Saturday in record time, winning for the third time in
four starts on Keeneland's Polytrack.
And as for that vial of old Keeneland dirt?
"I've still got it, but it's not in a very prominent place,"
Janney said. "I kind of go, 'What is this, like a voodoo doll?"
The 7¾-length victory in the $500,000 Spinster automatically
qualified Carriage Trail for the Breeders' Cup Ladies Classic this
month. That race will be held at Santa Anita, which recently
installed a synthetic surface, making a trip west a likelihood for
the horse that prefers surfaces other than dirt.
Carriage Trail has now at least showed in all eight races this
year, winning three of them.
"That was a big thrill today to see this filly do that,"
trainer Shug McGaughey said. "She's finally come into her own as a
5-year-old, and she's had a good year. This is kind of icing on the
Carriage Trail's time of 1:46.77 not only shattered the track
record by more than a second, but it was a record-tying fourth
Spinster win for McGaughey.
And, it appeared she could have won by even more if not for a
wide-right stretch run under jockey Kent Desormeaux, who saddled
Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Big Brown earlier this year.
"She will drift out in her races a little bit," McGaughey
said. "I talked to Kent about that in the paddock. Sometime it may
have cost her, but she was in front and there wasn't any sense in
fooling with her."
Desormeaux said she and fellow jockey Robby Albarado, who was
aboard beaten favorite Unbridled Belle, had joked that when the
horse was turned loose, "she just popped a wheelie."
"She just floated over the ground," Desormeaux said.
Carriage Trail was running fourth at the three-quarter pole
before surging ahead in the runaway victory. Model was second, more
than a length ahead of Rosinka.
"My filly ran huge, but that one horse in front of me was a
runner," said Calvin Borel, Model's jockey. "We just got
Carriage Trail paid $9.20, $5 and $3.40. Model returned $9.20
and $6, and Rosinka paid $7.80 to show.
The race was the seventh "win and you're in" Breeders' Cup
qualifier of the weekend at Keeneland. In the other one Sunday, the
Grade III Woodford Reserve Bourbon, even-money favorite Bittel Road
won by a head for Todd Pletcher over Driving Snow. Ninth Client was