Rushing Fall’s class showed in Saturday’s $500,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1) at Keeneland as the outstanding three-year-old filly made all the pace recording a comfortable 1 1/4-length victory. With regular rider Javier Castellano up, the Chad Brown-trainee completed 1 1/8 miles in 1:50.42 on the firm turf.
She’s owned by Bob Edwards’ e Five Racing Thoroughbreds and left the starting gate as the 2-5 favorite in a seven-horse field. None of her three-year-old rivals wanted the lead and Rushing Fall showed the way through unpressured splits in :23.91, :49.22 and 1:14.82.
Mission Impassible launched a menacing rally into the stretch but Rushing Fall dug in to turn back her challenger, surging away to win easily late.
“She’s a good filly,” Castellano said. “We discussed with the owner, Mr. Edwards, and Chad Brown how (I) can ride the horse in the race. We handicapped the race. I didn’t see much speed. That’s the reason I dictated the pace with slow fractions. She’s just a good filly. I just enjoyed the ride and am very lucky and blessed to enjoy those kind of horses.”
Now a five-time stakes winner, the More Than Ready filly has captured six-of-seven career starts, a neck second in the May 4 Edgewood (G3) at Churchill Downs being the only setback. She was exiting a 2 3/4-length romp in the August 18 Lake Placid (G2) at Saratoga and also captured the Appalachian (G2) at Keeneland earlier this season.
“The filly’s phenomenal. We’ve had an unbelievable run with her,” Edwards said. “Super happy to be here at Keeneland. It’s all about the team. I had a Hall of Fame rider (Javier Castellano) give a Hall of Fame ride. (She’s) an unbelievable filly picked by (bloodstock agent) Mike Ryan, trained by Chad Brown – the connections are phenomenal. She’s well-bred. (Co-breeder) Fred (Hertrich III) and his team have done a great job breeding horses. Just really happy to be here.”
Mission Impassible held second by 4 3/4 lengths at 11-1, with Nyaleti completing the trifecta. Princess Warrior, Capla Temptress, Secret Message and 5-1 second choice Fatale Bere completed the order.
Bred in Kentucky by Fred W. Hertrich III and John D. Fielding, Rushing Fall was purchased for $320,000 at the 2016 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga August yearling sale. She’s out of the Forestry mare Autumnal and counts the stakes-winning Milam and stakes-placed Autumn Song as half-siblings.
Brown said Rushing Fall will skip the Breeders’ Cup before the Queen Elizabeth II. She’s expected to be freshened for the rest of season and pointed towards a four-year-old campaign.