April 13, 2021

Breeders’ Cup Distaff Transcript 2020

Monomoy Girl
Monomoy Girl wins the Breeders' Cup Distaff (Coady Photography)

Transcript for the Nov. 7th, 2020 Breeders’ Cup Distaff at Keeneland.

  • Stuart Grant
  • Sol Kumin
  • Michael Dubb

THE MODERATOR: Here we are again. Monomoy Girl. What an incredible performance in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff. Stuart Grant, Sol Kumin, Michael Dubb. Just what an incredible mare. And Stuart, I’ll start with you first. This mare has taken you all on an incredible run. Two Breeders’ Cup Distaff victories now and then today culminating in this race.

STUART GRANT: It’s so exciting and it’s so exciting to do it with great partners. We have been together for awhile. We have a number of horses, but this one is the most special. The idea not only that she has all the Grade 1 wins in two Breeders’ Cups, an Eclipse Award, but she did it with a 18-month gap in between. You think about a professional athlete coming back from that kind of period of being off, it’s just unbelievable.

THE MODERATOR: That was the question that I had and then it also came from the press box as well: Was there ever a time or a question during that time period off and injuries and setbacks that you all thought maybe we will go ahead and retire her now? Stuart?

STUART GRANT: I’m not sure that there couldn’t have been. I mean, obviously, she was a quality race mare at the time after she finished her three-year-old year, and in your four-year-old year, if you get hurt, most people, I think, would have just packed it in and said, We can breed her. We can sell her in November or whatever. But we all love to race and it’s, we said, If there’s a way, and Brad Cox said, Here’s what I think.

And there was a whole team that put her back together again. But if it wasn’t for the kind of guys that I’m partners with, Mike and Mike and Sol, we probably would have packed it in. So I’m very proud of them and very, very proud of Monomoy Girl.

THE MODERATOR: Sol, that kind of leads into the next question. So she is scheduled to be sold tomorrow. She did miss a whole year of racing, so technically not that many races really. Would there be consideration to pull her out of sale or buy her back? What are the thoughts?

SOL KUMIN: Look, I think we’re going to enjoy tonight. And I think this group of owners will jump on a phone call later tonight or tomorrow and try to come up with a game plan and we’ll just kind of figure it out. I think at the end of the day we’re trying to be smart in the way we run our stable and she’s had an unbelievable career and we got to sort of think about what’s best for her and we’ll have to put our heads together and figure it out.

THE MODERATOR: Mike, talk a little bit about her career, because to maintain this high level, Grade 1 status for her throughout her career, even with the break, when she has just has been a, just incredible performer, and today, to run the kind of different style off the pace.

MICHAEL DUBB: Well, given her acquisition price, she was a hundred-thousand-dollar yearling, and her start in Indiana, she had a relatively obscure beginning. But sometimes it takes a little time for the light bulb to click on and once it clicked on, the one race in her career that she was beaten by the neck, still was an incredibly impressive race, and we knew then and there that we had something special. So to maintain that level throughout her three-year-old season, Oaks, Breeders’ Cup, and then come back in her five-year-old season and do what she’s done at four different racetracks, is just unbelievable. This is what the really, really special mares are all about.

THE MODERATOR: And a special team behind her, including we talked a little bit yesterday Liz Crow, Bradley Weisbord, who managed this filly, and then the team of Brad Cox as well. So Sol, if you can just kind of tell us a little bit about the people behind Monomoy Girl.

SOL KUMIN: Sure. It starts with Liz Crow. She is, I think, the first order she had when she went out on her own, the first ticket she signed. So obviously pretty special to be able to be this successful that quickly. And you’ve seen her star rise over the last few years by three unproven horses to win Breeders’ Cup races three years in a row with British Idiom and obviously Aunt Pearl yesterday. And after Liz bought the horse, she had really introduced us to Brad Cox and at that point, Brad was on his way up and had not won a Grade 1 yet. And if you look around this weekend, you can see he’s just tied the record for most Grade 1 wins at the Breeders’ Cup or most Breeders’ Cup wins, I should say. So he’s, we have been lucky enough to be part of his rise and he’s really been the key, I mean Liz obviously gets a ton of credit for picking the horse out, but Brad Cox has been the master, just knowing when to push, knowing when to step back, managing her career and he said to us before, her Grade 1 win, whenever it was, six, seven weeks ago, if I can get her back to winning a Grade 1, this will be my biggest accomplishment as a trainer. And it’s obviously an incredibly important horse in his career, so really just happy to be part of it.

THE MODERATOR: And Stuart, you mentioned partners and the industry as kind of changed so much over the years, to bring a lot of more partners into it and what does that mean, not only for you all as a partnership, but in this industry to get so many more people interested in what we all know and love?

STUART GRANT: Well, that’s one of the special things about a mare like Monomoy Girl. First of all, she was purchased at a price point that was mentioned where regular folks can get in. But the other nice thing is she’s built such a following that people just love that mare. So it’s not just our partnership, but it’s this extended group that just has gotten so much joy out of her. And I think the other thing that really give us the ownership team a lot of joy is, not only did Monomoy Girl make her own career, but launched the career of Liz, launched the career of Brad, really, I mean Flo is great, but really established him also, and so she has just given so much to all of us, so much joy and really launched so many careers that she is just an extraordinary once in a lifetime horse.

THE MODERATOR: I’ll let you celebrate and we will all be holding our breath and hoping for a decision to see this incredible mare back on the racetrack, but certainly she has blessed us all and you all as well with her performances to date. So congratulations again on Monomoy Girl, two wins in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff. Very impressive.