- Nobody really had an idea of what the real deal was with the Belmont turf courses when they were off for the first grass race of Breeders Cup day, the Filly & Mare Turf. So when Rafael Bejarano and Intercontinental went to the front and reeled off fractions of :48.4 and 1:13.3, it wasn’t known if the pace was suicidal or beneficial. It turned out to be downright larcenous as she came home in subsequent quarters of :24.2 and :24.1 to hold off defending champ Ouija Board and answer the lingering questions about her ability to get the distance that contributed to her 15-1 odds.
Intercontinental is by the prolific dual hemisphere sire Danehill, sire of over 300 stakes winners, out of Hasili (Kahyasi), a Northern Dancer line broodmare who was a stakes winner herself, but is better known as a stakes-winner producer machine. Besides Intercontinental’s full sister Banks Hill, who won this race here at Belmont in 2001, she has also produced two full brothers, Cacique and Dansili, both stakes winners in France, as well as Heat Haze (by Green Dancer, like Danehill, a son of Danzig), a multiple Grade 1 winner here, including the Beverly D, who I believe was also trained by Frankel. Interestingly, Hasili is also a half sister to Dissemble, the dam of Leroidesanimaux.
Moral Victory – Ouija Board was a gallant second despite her troubled 2005 campaign and a very wide trip. Tranier Ed Dunlop:
“She doesn’t quicken as well off good-to-soft ground and she really wants a mile-and-a-half now. I’m very proud of her and she’ll run in the Japan Cup next month. After that, I just don’t know.” [Times Online]- Merv Griffin was not the only person to benefit financially from Stevie Wonderboy’s win in the Juvenile. Sire Stephen Got Even, who was scheduled to report to stud duty in 2006 with a $15,000 fee at William Farish’s Lane’s End, saw his fee raised to $25,000 after Stevie’s win. If he services the 84 mares he did this year, that’s another $840,000 in the till. Better than having the triple in the Juvenile. Saint Liam will start at $50,000 at the same farm.