Summer

 

One year after Pluck used the Grade 3 Summer as a stepping-stone to victory in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf, trainer Todd Pletcher has the chance to sweep the two races again, this time with Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith's Finale. Favored at 4-5 in the $259,666 Summer at Woodbine on Saturday, the dark bay punched his ticket to the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf at Churchill Downs on November 5 with a grinding three-quarters of a length score over 15-1 Excaper.

Positioned prominently in third as Excaper set splits of :23 4/5 and :47, Finale challenged that leader in the stretch, moved ahead slightly a furlong out, then gamely turned back Excaper's attempt at a re-rally. Under John Velazquez, Finale finished up one mile on the firm turf in 1:35 2/5. He returned $3.70, $3.10 and $2.10.

"He didn't leave the gate very good," Velazquez said. "I actually hit the door and the iron went all the way to my foot. I had to break and get a position where I wanted to be and place my feet back where they were supposed to be. After that he took me very well the first part of the race. At the quarter pole, I thought he was going to finish a little better than what he did. I think he was having a hard time with the grass. It was a little bit on the soft side and he was running at the other horse (Excaper), but he didn't have that quick spurt out of him."

Excaper was clearly second best, 3 1/4 lengths ahead of deep closer and 5-1 chance Daddy Nose Best. The latter edged 3-1 second choice Maritimer for third by a neck. Burn the Mortgage, Making Amends, Jomelo and Secret Consultant rounded out the order of finish.

According to Velazquez, Finale spun his wheels in his first two starts on dirt. Third in the mud at Belmont Park on May 5, the son of Scat Daddy fared worse on fast ground a month later when fourth by more than 11 lengths. A change in surface on July 15 at Belmont produced immediate dividends as Finale coasted by 5 3/4 lengths going six furlongs. Favored at 1-5 in his stakes debut last time in the Continental Mile at Monmouth Park, Finale pummeled an overmatched field by 10 1/2 lengths. This victory boosted his career bankroll to $237,345.

Bred by Susan Bunning in Kentucky, Finale was a $175,000 Keeneland November weanling purchase. Produced by Twinkle, Finale is a half-brother to Grade 3 winner Bright One. This female family is also responsible for Grade 1 vixen Alma North.

Finale descends from Mumtaz Begum, the dam of influential sire *Nasrullah.

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California Chrome Cruises to Victory in 140th Kentucky Derby before Crowd of 164,906

Steven Coburn and Perry Martin's favored California Chrome, ridden by Victor Espinoza, took command at the head of the stretch en route to a 1 3/4-length victory over Commanding Curve to win the 140th running of the $2,202,800 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I). A sun-splashed crowd of 164,906, the second-largest attendance in Kentucky Derby history, watched California Chrome give jockey Victor Espinoza a second Derby victory to go with his triumph on War Emblem in 2002.

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Glen Hill Farm's Global View caught Storming Inti in the closing strides

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Coffee Clique squeezed through an opening along the hedge

Derby Week Concludes with Memorable Kentucky Derby 140 as California Chrome Wins America’s Greatest Race

164,906 fans pack historic Churchill Downs

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Lindsay & Els Chicago, IL

First time at the Oaks so that's why we have these crazy hats on, shaped like cheese hats and painted pink in honor of Bright Pink, which is a great charity.
Paula's picking California Chrome

Kentucky Derby 140 presented by Yum! - The Race

Kentucky Derby 140 - Road to the Derby

Kentucky Derby 140 Intro

Around the Downs - The Stables

The Race

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GET TO KNOW THE KENTUCKY DERBY WINNER CALIFORNIA CHROME (PRE-RACE BIO)

California Chrome is attempting to become only the fourth California-bred, Kentucky Derby winner in history and the first since Decidedly in 1962.