BC JUVENILE FILLIES | PURSE: $1 MILLION | 2-YEAR-OLD FILLIES | GRADE 1 | 1 1/16-MILES
After reaching the wire a nose behind She's a Tiger, longshot Ria Antonia was placed first in the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Saturday, Nov. 2 at Santa Anita Park.
In a majority decision, the stewards reversed the order of the top two finishers, placing 32-1 Ria Antonia ahead of She's a Tiger. A replay showed She's a Tiger come out and bump Ria Antonia in deep stretch as those two dueled late.
Jockey Javier Castellano, who picked up his third Breeders' Cup win aboard Ria Antonia, said the bump was costly.
"Javier says she got bumped right before she was going to go by. It's right there; you can see it on the replay," said winning trainer Jeremiah Englehart. "After that, you have to take the horse down. If that horse changes course and doesn't make contact, you say, 'OK, leave it up.' But once you make contact it has to come down."
The decision stung Jeff Bonde, trainer of She's A Tiger.
"This is heartbreaking; heartbreaking," Bonde said after just missing his first Breeders' Cup win. "There is nothing else I can say. She is still a wonderful filly, but this just heartbreaking."
Loooch Racing Stable and Christopher Dunn's Ria Antonia raced in sixth while She's a Tiger led the field of 10 2-year-old fillies through a half-mile in :45.31. She's a Tiger extended her advantage to four lengths through six furlongs in 1:09.30 while Ria Antonia improved position to third, some 4 ½ lengths behind.
Ria Antonia, by Rockport Harbor, moved into second in midstretch and engaged She's a Tiger in deep stretch. Ria Antonia would fall a nose short but would be put up by the stewards. Final time for the 1 1/16-mile race was 1:43.02.
"She was turning for home. I thought it looked like we were going to win the race, and I'm thinking, 'Oh, my God, just remember, keep your clothes on, act professional,'" said Englehart who picked up his first Breeders' Cup win. "It was special because my wife, Robin, was there."
Ria Antonia placed fifth in her previous start, the Frizette Stakes Oct. 5 at Belmont Park. Her only win in four previous starts came in a maiden race on the Woodbine Polytrack.
Ria Antonia returned $66.60 to win, $29.80 to place, and $17.40 to show. She's a Tiger paid $6.40 to place and $4.80 to show while Landalue Educe Stables' Rosalind returned $6.80 to show. Rosalind was followed by 5-2 favorite Sweet Reason in fourth.
The race was marred by the breakdown of Chandelier Stakes winner Secret Compass, who fell as she was making a move toward She's a Tiger in the far turn. The daughter of Discreet Cat was euthanized.
"Secret Compass sustained a lateral condylar fracture with dislocation, which is an injury we can't bring them back from because when they dislocate on the track, they lose their blood supply, so she has been euthanized," reported Dr. Wayne McIlwraith, the on-call veterinarian for the American Association of Equine Practitioners.
Jockey John Velazquez, who was aboard Secret Compass, was transported to nearby Huntington Memorial Hospital.