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Bobby 'shanghais' Breeders' Cup Juvenile
|Shanghai Bobby gutted out the win over He's Had Enough in the BC Juvenile
Despite some scary moments in the stretch, Shanghai Bobby lived up to his 6-5
favoritism to take Saturday's $1,818,000
Breeders' Cup Juvenile by a
head over He's Had Enough.
The Todd Pletcher trainee tracked the pacesetting Title Contender through
fractions of :22 1/5 and :45 2/5 before asserting his class to take over
entering the turn. Shanghai Bobby began looking around after opening up a clear
lead heading into Santa Anita's stretch, but jockey Rosie Napravnik never
panicked. She kept urging the dark bay colt on while saving ground along the
rail until He's Had Enough pulled up to challenge on the outside.
That got the Harlan's Holiday colt's attention, and Shanghai Bobby dug in to
secure the slim victory in a final time of 1:44 2/5 for 1 1/16 miles on the fast
"We were in a great spot. As a matter of fact, down the backside, I was
having déjà vu of the (Grade 1) Kentucky Oaks (win aboard Believe You Can) and
being in that golden spot," said Napravnik, who followed in Julie Krone's
footsteps to become just the second female rider to win a Breeders' Cup race.
"He outran the one horse (Title Contender) way too early because once he gets
to the lead, he gets a little bit lost. I was worried at that point, because he
just came to a walk. I was hoping those horses would come up to him sooner than
later. They did, and he kicked on again. He's a terrific horse.
"He was nose and nose with me," Napravnik said of He's Had Enough. "I was
looking forward mostly because I knew they were coming and once Bobby saw them
that he would kick into gear and he re-breaks so sharply. It's an unbelievable
|It was nip/tuck between Shanghai Bobby and his rival in late stretch
"That was our strategy, to be aggressive, the way the track was playing,"
Pletcher admitted. "We didn't want to get shuffled back.
"I kept going back on the Track Barron (at Belmont Park) in his second start.
He went pretty fast early, and it looked like he was in trouble, but when horses
engaged him, he fought on and found more. I was hoping he was going to be able
to do that today. I was concerned about the fractions.
Shanghai Bobby moved his record to a perfect five-for-five with this win and
essentially wrapped up champion two-year-old male honors while returning $4.60,
$3.40 and $2.60 to his faithful backers.
"It's great to have an undefeated two-year-old and go all the way from April
to November; it's pretty hard to do. It's a real feather in his cap," Pletcher
added. "He's got everything you want. He's fast and he's courageous. He's
handled everything we've thrown at him, from 4 1/2 furlongs to 1 1/16 miles. He
just keeps coming."
He's Had Enough ran greenly in the stretch, drifting toward the grandstand
before jockey Mario Gutierrez straightened him up and sent the Tapit colt up to
Shanghai Bobby's throatlatch.
"To overcome all that trouble, he ran dynamite," said He's Had Enough's
trainer, Doug O'Neill. "Right to the end, I was still thinking he was going to
get there. He got beat by a nice horse."
It was another 2 1/4 lengths behind the gray runner-up to Cape Bastone, who
in turn had 1 3/4 lengths to spare on Fortify. Power Broker, Dynamic Sky, Speak
Logistics, Title Contender and Monument completed the order under the wire.
|Shanghai Bobby eye-balled He's Had Enough while holding to the wire
(Wendy Wooley/EquiSport Photos)
Shanghai Bobby entered the Juvenile owning a five-length win in the Grade 1
Champagne at Saratoga and a 3 3/4-length score in Belmont Park's Grade 2
Hopeful. Prior to those two the juvenile broke his maiden at Aqueduct by four
lengths and recorded a one-length victory in the Track Barron. With the winner's
share from Saturday's race, the dark bay has now banked $1,687,000 in lifetime earnings.
"I think what impressed me a lot about Shanghai Bobby is the fact that he's
so athletic, and he's so smart," said Napravnik, who's been aboard for all of
the colt's races. "I wasn't really congratulating him on his smartness at the
quarter-pole today but I was at the sixteenth-pole.
"He's a really cool horse, he has a personality. It makes my day every time
Todd asks me to come and breeze him in the mornings, and not to mention in the
afternoon he's just -- he's all heart, he's all race horse. He's exactly what
every rider is looking for."
Bred in Kentucky by Stonehaven Steadings, Shanghai Bobby has more than earned
back his initial purchase price of $105,000 as a Keeneland September yearling.
It also didn't hurt that Coolmore principals Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor
and Derrick Smith purchased a 50 percent interest of the colt from owner
Starlight Racing leading up to the Breeders' Cup.
"Of course not!" Jack Wolf of Starlight Racing said when asked if he now
regretted selling a percentage of Shanghai Bobby to Coolmore. "The way it worked
out, these guys have had horses with Todd for a number of years, and it was a
natural deal. They were interested in the horse mainly as a stallion prospect
and having the fun of doing this. No, it's great to have them as partners, and
we've already had some fun and we'll have some more fun, hopefully."
Shanghai Bobby is the first registered foal of the stakes-winning Orientate
mare Steelin' and hails from the family of Grade 1-winning producer City Band.
This is also the family of Grade 2 vixen Really Quick as well as Grade 3 victors
American Lion and King's Reel.
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