January 23, 2018

Lady Aurelia a strong favorite in Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint

Lady Aurelia figures to be a solid favorite in the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint on November 4 (Coady Photography)

She’s made five of her seven career starts in Europe, but Lady Aurelia, American as apple pie, will get to face the world’s best on her home turf Saturday in the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1).

Installed as the 5-2 morning line, the three-year-old daughter of Scat Daddy is sure to start at a much shorter price in the five-furlong dash. Lightly-raced this season with just three starts, she earned world acclaim with a three-length domination of the King’s Stand (G1) in June, her second win at Royal Ascot in second Group 1 on the continent.

Lady Aurelia’s main threat Saturday could be English invader Marsha, who edged her by the narrowest of noses in the Nunthorpe (G1) at York in August. More active this term than her younger counterpart, Marsha was most recently second in a title defense of the Prix de l’Abbaye (G1) at Chantilly.

The Christophe Clement-trained duo of Disco Partner and Pure Sensation enter with solid form. Disco Partner has won his last four around one turn, albeit at a minimum of six furlongs, including the Belmont Turf Sprint last time. Third in the Turf Sprint at Santa Anita last year, stablemate Pure Sensation exits a half-length victory over 2015 Turf Sprint winner Mongolian Saturday in the Turf Monster (G3) at Parx.

Locally-based Richard’s Boy has won or place in all four starts on the Del Mar turf and is one of only two in the main body of the field with experience over the course and distance. Graded stakes veterans Holding Gold, Hogy, and Bucherro also take their shot, but would be surprises against either of the two fillies, both of whom look to follow Mizdirection (2012-13) as female winners of this race.

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