$12 Million Rematch – Stars could be Aligned
Growing up in Saratoga Springs and having the luxury of attending the historical Saratoga Race Course creates an opportunity of seeing magnificent thoroughbreds competing every summer.Each year, upstate New York is a buzz with what stars maybe appearing at the Saratoga Race Course. On August 27th, for the TRAVERS STAKES, an ample crowd at the track and upstate New York racing fans were treated to a special display of power and speed by a new upcoming 3 year old star Arrogate who ran the fastest TRAVERS STAKES in the 147 year history.
Rivalries are Intriguing
In Sports, people love a good rivalry like; Red Sox/Yankees, Michigan/Ohio State, Celtics/Lakers, Duke/North Carolina, Bears/Packers and in horse racing we have had Affirmed/Alydar and Easy Goer/Sunday Silence. Approaching the Breeders’ Cup 2016, a rivalry was brewing from the Champ – California Chrome and Arrogate. A 5 year old Champion colt in California Chrome, who had won six Graded Stakes races in a row including two outstanding races in Dubai, was more than ready for a new challenge from a younger colt in Arrogate. Arrogate had won 4 races in a row including the TRAVERS STAKES.
The strategy and chess match of the Breeders’ Cup Classic was set in place as to who was going to go to the front and who was going to lay just off the pace.
California Chrome took command early with Arrogate breaking a little slow and settling off the pace. Approaching the far turn, California Chrome was in the clear with Victor Espinoza taking a few peeks behind leaving the quarter pole looking for the ever closing Arrogate. Chrome was still in the lead at the eighth pole, but could feel the winner’s charge. Arrogate finished with a surge at the line and defeated the Champ. Espinoza has been candid in his response to some criticism regarding his very confident and relaxing ride of California Chrome in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Maybe, just maybe he needed to ride a little stronger for the last furlong. Espinoza and the Chrome team are chomping at the bit for another opportunity!
On Saturday, January 28th, 2017 Gulfstream Park will be hosting the inaugural running of the $12 million PEGASUS WORLD CUP – the world’s richest Thoroughbred race. Right now, it looks like California Chrome and Arrogate are on target for Round 2. This would be California Chrome’s last race before retiring and heading to a breeding farm in Kentucky. On the Saturday before, January 21st at Gulfstream Park, is the ECLIPSE AWARDS with a category of “Horse of the Year.” Most likely the award will go to either California Chrome or Arrogate – only fitting that they will meet again on the track for the PEGASUS WORLD CUP! Let’s hope the stars stay aligned!