Muhannak wins Marathon, gives Europe 1st BC win

ARCADIA, Calif. -- After getting blanked on Friday, the Europeans began Saturday's Breeders' Cup Day card with a victory when Muhannak won the inaugural running of the $500,000 Breeders' Cup Marathon by a head over Church Service. It was three-quarters of a length back to Big Booster.

Muhannak, a 4-year-old Irish-bred gelded son of Chester House, was ridden by Pat Smullen for trainer Ralph Beckett and owner Richard Pegum. It was the first Breeders' Cup starter for Beckett and Pegum. It was the first Breeders' Cup victory for Smullen in his eighth mount.

The second- and third-place finishers were both trained by Mike Mitchell.

Muhannak, who took the lead at the quarter pole after racing in fourth position down the backside, covered the 1 1/2 miles over the Pro-Ride in 2:28.24 and returned $26.80.

Add Heat was scratched from the Marathon with a minor suspsensory injury to his right foreleg.

Oak Tree at Santa Anita, 1st Race - October 25, 2008