2023 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint
The Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint debuted at at the 2018 World Championships, November 2-3 at Churchill Downs and carries a $1 million purse. The race will be run at 5.5 furlongs on the turf and will be open to all 2-year-olds.
The 2023 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint will be held at Santa Anita Park on Friday, November 3. Bet & watch the race with OffTrackBetting.com (OTB) - US Legal Online Wagering.
Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint
2023 Juvenile Turf Sprint Contenders
2023 Juvenile Turf Sprint Field & Odds
Race 5 at Santa Anita on Friday, November 3 - Post 5:00 PM
|1||Crimson Advocate||4-1||John Velazquez
|2||No Nay Mets (IRE)||4-1||Irad Ortiz, Jr.
|3||Tiger Belle (IRE)||15-1||Cristian Demuro
|4||Big Evs (IRE)||3-1||Tom Marquand
|5||Givemethebeatboys (IRE)||15-1||Shane Foley
|6||Starlust (GB)||20-1||Lanfranco Dettori
|8||Cherry Blossom (IRE)||12-1||Ryan Moore
|9||Amidst Waves||8-1||Flavien Prat
|10||Valiant Force||12-1||William Buick
|12||Committee of One||8-1||Cristian Torres
|14||Asean (IRE)||20-1||Tyler Gaffalione
|15||April Vintage||20-1||Joel Rosario
Getting off to a quick start is imperative with 2-year-old sprinters, and Crimson Advocate did just that.
Starting early in the season - finishing third in a maiden special weight on the dirt April 26 at Keeneland - the chestnut filly earned her first win May 13 in Gulfstream Park's $100,000 Royal Palm Juvenile Fillies Stakes at 5 furlongs on the grass, then made the trek to the prestigious Royal Ascot program in England where she delivered an outstanding performance in front of an international audience in the June 21 Queen Mary Stakes (G2).
At 5 furlongs on turf, she just held off the late charge of Relief Rally in a 26-horse field to score a nose victory while being ridden by Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez.
Crimson Advocate is a juvenile daughter of Nyquist, who was the 2-year-old champion of 2015 following an undefeated season that culminated with a victory in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1). Bred in Kentucky by Whitehall Lane Farm, Crimson Advocate is out of the Proud Citizen mare Citizen Advocate. Citizen Advocate won three stakes at 2 in 2011 over three racetracks, thus giving Crimson Advocate every right to be precocious right off the bat.
Crimson Advocate was a $100,000 purchase at the 2022 Ocala Breeders' Sales' October yearling sale and was part of the consignment of Florida horsewoman Beth Bayer. She races for Randy Hill's R.A. Hill Stable, Swinbank Stables, Black Type Thoroughbreds, Black Ridge Stables, RAP Racing, Chris Mara and Amy Dunne.
She is conditioned by George Weaver, a well-respected horseman who learned his lessons while being an assistant to Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas. Weaver's best runner to date is two-time Grade 1 winner Vekoma, who was co-owned by Hill.
No Nay Mets
For a young 2-year-old colt, No Nay Mets (IRE) already has a lot of things going for him. Blessed with a speedy/miler type pedigree, he apparently has the looks and ability to match. This year he sold at Goffs in London for the equivalent of $1,025,796 and has won stakes races in South Florida and New Jersey.
Bred by Coolmore, a global (Ireland, U.S. and Australia) operation that had great success in every international arena, No Nay Mets is by Coolmore stallion No Nay Never, a son of Scat Daddy. No Nay Never was a Group 1 winner at 2 in France and was a graded stakes-winning sprinter in the U.S. and was second in the 2014 Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (G1T) at Santa Anita. As a sire, the fact he stands for 175,000 Euros speaks to his abilities, as does the fact he was the leading first crop sire of 2018 in Ireland and last year's leading sire of 2-year-olds. No Nay Mets' dam, the Group 3-winning Etoile, is a daughter of top grass sire War Front, the sire of more than 110 stakes winners.
No Nay Mets sold for $184,682 as a sale yearling in France and was a $335,000 RNA in Florida this year prior to his sale in London. He races for Bregman Family Racing and WWBD LLC, led by Houston Astros All-Star third baseman Alex Bregman. His debut in Gulfstream Park's Royal Palm Juvenile Stakes at 5 furlongs on turf resulted in a 3 1/2-length victory May 13. He then traveled to the Royal Ascot meet and was ninth in a field of 14 in the Group 2 Norfolk Stakes. However, he acquitted himself with a 5 1/2-length romp July 30 in the Tyro Stakes at 5 furlongs over the turf course at Monmouth Park.
One doesn't have to be seven-figure sale yearling to be a star in the Breeders' Cup. Tiger Belle (IRE), a bay filly that initially sold at public auction for $17,707 as a yearling at last year's Tattersalls Ireland September yearling sale, holds a strong hand for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1) following her neck score Aug. 31 at Longchamp in the 5-furlong Prix d'Arenberg (G3). The French graded stakes score, with Cristian Demuro up, adds to her victory July 26 at Naas in Ireland in the Arqana Irish E.B.F. Marwell Stakes at the same distance.
Paul Giles bred Tiger Belle, whose three victories in Europe have come by a neck, nose, and a neck. After she sold as a yearling, the racing partnership group Shamrock Thoroughbreds, purchased her for $87,401 at this year's Goffs UK 2-year-old Breeze Up Sale. Managing director Stephen Thorne, Godolphin Flying Start graduate in 2014, leads Shamrock Thoroughbreds. He started Shamrock Thoroughbreds in 2017 and has had success with several stakes winners including the Group 3-winning Current Option (IRE).
Of Tiger Belle, Thorne noted: "She's a straightforward ride with a lot of gate speed. She's not over-big, but she's got a big heart."
Tiger Belle is by Cotai Glory, a Group 3-winning, two-time Group 1-placed, sprinting son of Exceed And Excel (AUS). Tiger Belle is the second foal out of 8-year-old Dark Acclamation (IRE). Tiger Belle began her racing career early, May 17 in Ireland, and was a neck winner going 5 furlongs at Cork.
RP Racing's Big Evs (IRE) just missed by a half-length in his first start in late May, but took down two big juvenile sprint stakes in England in his next outings. Trained by Michael Appleby (no relation to top trainer Charlie Appleby), Big Evs was a surprising 20-1 winner of the 5-furlong Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot and followed that with a neck score in the Group 3 Jaeger Lecoultre Molecomb Stakes at the same distance during the Goodwood meeting in early August.
Big Evs took on older runners Aug. 25 in the Wootton Bassett Nunthorpe Stakes (G1) going 5 furlongs at York, pressing the early pace before fading to 14th in a field of 16 beaten 8 1/2 lengths. Big Evs rebounded in a big way on Sept. 15 at Doncaster when he led all the way to post a 2 ¾-length victory over fellow 2-year-olds in the 5-furlong Flying Childers Stakes (G2) over soft ground.
Big Evs was bred in Ireland by Rabbah Bloodstock Limited, which has bred at least 10 Grade/Group 1 winners internationally including U.S. stars Domestic Spending (GB) and Technical Analysis (IRE). Rabbah Bloodstock is an individual concern that oversees racing/breeding interests for the friends of Sheikh Mohammed.
Big Evs' pedigree is steeped in top-level European racing. His sire, Blue Point (IRE), may not be a household name in the U.S., but he won or placed in eight Group 1 events, including two victories in Royal Ascot's King's Stand Stakes and a win in the Al Quoz Sprint in Dubai. Big Ev's dam, Hana Lina, is a daughter of Oasis Dream, who was England's high-weighted colt at 2 off his score in Newmarket's Shadwell Stud Middle Park Stakes, and at 3 was Europe's champion sprinter. Oasis Dream has sired 66 Group stakes winners (18 Group 1 winners).
With a nod toward the of the 1970s classic song "Drift Away," Givemethebeatboys (IRE) appears to be drifting toward his U.S. debut after compiling a 2-0-1 mark in five turf sprint outings.
The son of Bungle Inthejungle (GB), made his debut a winning one in mid-May, then promptly won the GAIN Marble Hill Stakes (G3) at the Curragh in Ireland. Since then the bay colt has run twice at the Group 1 level and once in a Group 2, showing he's a player at the highest level this season. He was third in August in the Keeneland Phoenix Stakes (G1) at the Curragh.
Bred by Airlie Stud and Mrs. S. M. Rogers, Givemethebeatboys made his first two starts for Mrs. Theresa Marnane, with Bronsan Racing joining in ownership just before his start in the Coventry Stakes (G2) at Royal Ascot. He is trained by Jessica Harrington.
Group 3 winner Bungle Inthejungle stands at Rathasker Stud in Ireland. Givemethebeatboys is the second foal out of Dromana (IRE), a daughter of Dutch Art (GB). Dromana is a half-sister to a trio of stakes horses.
A hardy sort, Starlust (GB) has faced the starter seven times in England and has earned three wins and two seconds. One of those victories came Sept. 9 in the Unibet Zero Mission Sirenia Stakes (G3) at Kempton. The bay colt is one of many turf sprint specialists from the 2021 crop of Zoustar (AUS).
Starlust was bred in England by Branton Court Stud. Steve Parkin, who has had business success with Clipper Logistics, is behind Branton Court Stud. Of late they are the listed breeders of 2023 Group 1 winner Fallen Angel (GB) and multiple group 2 winner Dramatised (IRE).
Two of Starlust's victories have come over all-weather surfaces, the latest being his stakes score. On Sept. 30 he finished fifth in the 6-furlong Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes (G1) at Newmarket.
Trained by Ralph Beckett, Starlust races for Mrs. Fitri Hay. Barton Stud consigned Starlust to the 2022 Tattersalls October yearling sale where he was sold for $63,852.
Juvenile colt Shards made his way to Keeneland's fall meet off a 5-length maiden win in a turf sprint at Colonial Downs in early September and came within a neck of winning the $243,907 Indian Summer Stakes going 5 ½ furlongs. Charging from eighth under Adam Beschizza, the chestnut just missed catching fellow Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1) hopefuls Committee of One and Amidst Waves.
Shards races for NBS Stable, Crown's Way Racing and Kevin Marko. He is trained by Kelsey Danner. The Florida-bred Shards was a $175,000 purchase by NBS Stable and John Ballantyne from Tom McCrocklin at this year's Ocala Breeders' Sales' March auction of 2-year-olds in training.
Shards is by the quick-running Bucchero, who made two runs at the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (G1), finishing fourth in 2017 and eighth in 2018. Shards, out of the Utopia (JPN) mare Cynthia's Fury, was bred in Florida by Craig L. Wheeler.
Shards is the third foal out of Cynthia's Fury. Her first is FTBOA Florida Sires Desert Vixen Stakes winner My Sassenach.
|Breeders' Cup Race||Grade||Purse||Date|
|Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint||I||$1,000,000||November 3|
|Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf||I||$1,000,000||November 3|
|Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies||I||$2,000,000||November 3|
|Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf||I||$1,000,000||November 3|
|Breeders' Cup Juvenile||I||$2,000,000||November 3|
|Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint||I||$1,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint||I||$1,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile||I||$1,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf||I||$2,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Sprint||I||$2,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Mile||I||$2,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Distaff||I||$2,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Turf||I||$4,000,000||November 4|
|Breeders' Cup Classic||I||$6,000,000||November 4|
Trainer George Weaver is having quite a year, especially with his 2-year-olds. Amidst Waves is one of three stakes-winning juveniles for Weaver in 2023, joined by Crimson Advocate, a Group 2 winner at Royal Ascot, and No Nay Mets (IRE), a two-time stakes winner in turf sprints. Weaver, a former assistant with legendary conditioner D. Wayne Lukas, has been a public trainer since 2002. He has sent out more than 20 graded stakes winners including two-time Grade 1 winner Vekoma.
A 2-year-old chestnut filly, Amidst Waves was bred in Kentucky by Peter O'Callaghan's Woods Edge Farm and Ballyfair Bloodstock and she races for R. A. Hill Stable, BlackRidge Stable, Swinbank Stables, Big Tufff Stables and Black Type Thoroughbreds. Randy Hill's R. A. Hill Stable was a partner in Vekoma and Crimson Advocate. Swinbank Stables, Black Type Thoroughbreds, and BlackRidge Stables are also co-owners of Crimson Advocate. She was a $100,000 sale yearling at the 2022 Keeneland September auction.
She is a daughter of Midshipman, a son of Unbridled's Song who won the 2008 Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) on his way to a juvenile male championship and was third in the following year's Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (G1).
Winner of the 5-furlong Colleen Stakes over Monmouth Park's turf course in late July, Amidst Waves was a nose winner of Saratoga's Bolton Landing Stakes at 5 1/2furlongs on the grass. She was the favorite in each event after breaking her maiden as a 20-1 shot June 11 at Belmont Park in her turf debut.
After a seven-week break, Weaver shipped Amidst Waves to Keeneland for the 5 ½-furlong Indian Summer on Oct. 8 in which she took on the boys. She didn't have the best of luck as she had to alter her path while making a bid in the stretch and had to settle for second beaten a nose.
Winning at the graded stakes level at the prestigious Royal Ascot meeting in England puts a horse in rarefied air. That was the case this year with Valiant Force, a 2-year-old colt that was a handy 1 ¼-length winner of the June 22 Norfolk Stakes (G2). The quick juvenile by Malibu Moon was a surprising winner at 150-1 ... a price unlikely to be seen in the Prevagen Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf (G1)
While racing in Europe, Valiant Force's roots are firmly planted in North America. His sire, who stood in Maryland and Kentucky, is responsible for nearly 150 stakes winners and has sired a champion 2-year-old male (Declan's Moon), a Kentucky Derby (G1) winner (Orb), and 13 other individuals who have won at the Grade 1 level.
His dam, Vigui's Heart, is a daughter of top sire Quality Road, a sire of 15 Grade 1 winners including this year's Preakness Stakes (G1) victor National Treasure. Vigui's Heart was bred in Kentucky by Jerry Amerman, who along with her husband, John, have bred and or raced several top-level Thoroughbreds including Breeders' Cup winners Oscar Performance and Adoration.
Valiant Force was bred by Ramon Horta Rangel and Spendthrift Farm. Rangel is an assistant yearling manager at the venerable breeding operation. Malibu Moon stood at Spendthrift until his untimely death in 2021. Consigned to the 2021 Keeneland November breeding stock sale, Valiant Force was sold to J.R.L. 3 Racing for $75,000. Robson Aguiar/Roger O'Callaghan purchased him for $100,000 at the following year's Keeneland September yearling auction.
Valiant Force, trained by Adrian Murray, won the Norfolk while owned by AMO Racing, Rachael O'Callaghan and Giselle De Aguiar. He came to Royal Ascot following two starts in Ireland at the Curragh including a third-place effort in the GAIN First Flier Stakes (G3) going 6 furlongs. He returned to the races Aug. 20 and finished fifth in the Prix Morny (G1) going 6 furlongs at Deauville beaten 9 3/4 lengths over heavy ground.
Slider made his stakes debut a winning one as the odds-on favorite in Santa Anita's Oct. 7 Speakeasy Stakes for 2-year-old turf sprinters. The bay colt by Jimmy Creed won the 5-furlong grass event in :55.96 at 9-10, defeating second choice Dark Vintage (IRE) by 1 ¼ lengths.
Slider was making his turf debut in the Speakeasy following two races on dirt at Del Mar. His second outing was his maiden winner, a 3-length tally going 5 ½ furlongs Sept. 9.
Slider's speed comes naturally from his pedigree. He is a son of Jimmy Creed, a two-time graded stakes winner at 7 furlongs or less. Jimmy Creed tried the Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) in 2012 but was unplaced. Jimmy Creed is the sire of three graded stakes winners this year (Casa Creed, Private Creed and Joey Freshwater).
Slider is out of Days Like This, a daughter of Congrats. Slider was bred in Kentucky by Jason Hall, Stephen Baker, Herschel Martindale and Mike Riordan. Slider races for Hall Racing, Pearl Racing and West Point Thoroughbreds. Slider was purchased by West Point Thoroughbreds for $240,000 this year during the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co.'s April 2-year-olds in training sale. He was consigned by Marcial Galan.
Committee of One
Committee of One is certainly a "gamer." The 2-year-old colt by Mendelssohn has made three starts in turf sprints through early October and has two close-up seconds and a win.
The win came in his third, and biggest, outing in the $243,907 Indian Summer Stakes. That event was Oct. 8 during Keeneland's Fall Stars Weekend. Rallying from seventh to get up by a nose in the 5 1/2-furlong race, Committee of One defeated favorite Amidst Waves, who is also a contender for the Nov. 3 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1).
Committee of One was bred in Kentucky by Gatewood Bell, Ken Donworth and Ike Van Meter. The chestnut colt races for J. Kirk and Judy Robison, who purchased Committee Of One for $80,000 at the 2022 Keeneland September Yearling sale.
Committee of One is from the second crop of Mendelssohn, a half brother to four-time leading sire Into Mischief and winner of the 2017 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf (G1). The Indian Summer winner is out of the Smart Strike mare Sweetest Sound, whose second dam, Grade 1-placed Sweet Life, is the dam of Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) winner Sweet Catomine and Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic (G1) winner Life is Sweet.
Weaver Holds Three Aces in Juvenile Turf Sprint
OCT 31 - It was not by design that trainer George Weaver will saddle 25 percent of the field Friday in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1). Weaver will send the two fillies, Amidst Waves and Crimson Advocate, and a colt, No Nay Mets (IRE) - with seven stakes wins between them - into the five-furlong $1,000,000 race that opens the Breeders' Cup weekend.
"It has to do with a horse more than me or anything else," Weaver said. "We just happen to get those horses and that's what they are."
Amidst Waves, is a Midshipman filly who won the Colleen at Monmouth, the Bolton Landing at Saratoga and finished second by a nose to males in the Indian Summer at Keeneland on Oct. 8. Crimson Advocate, a daughter of Nyquist, will be making her first start since winning the Queen Mary (G2) at Royal Ascot on June 21. Houston Astros star third baseman Alex Bregman is the principal owner of No Nay Mets, a No Nay Never colt, whose three wins in four starts were in stakes. His only setback was a ninth in the Norfolk Stakes (G2) at Royal Ascot.
Weaver smiled at the suggestion that he was evolving into a turf sprint trainer.
"We're just trying to get our owners into stakes-caliber horses that have chances to take us to races like the Breeders Cup," he said. "It just so happens this year that we've got the turf sprinters. Whenever you get a chance to run those type races, turf or dirt, short or long, it's exciting."
Amidst Waves was ready to run in early May and has three wins and a second in five starts.
"She's put together a nice resume. She's never really run a bad race," Weaver said. "She was fourth first time out on the dirt. Ever since then every race she's run has been good. She deserves a shot at the Breeders Cup."
Crimson Advocate also started on dirt in her debut, finishing fourth on April 26. Weaver tried her in the Royal Palm Juvenile Filly at Gulfstream Park on May 13 and she easily won the Royal Ascot qualifier. She held on to win the Queen Mary by a nose under John Velazquez and has not raced since.
Weaver said she did not have a setback and has been training steadily at Saratoga for the race.
"I wanted to give her a break," he said. "Obviously, we've had that race in mind. She's come along really nicely. And she deserves to be in there as well."
No Nay Mets was a pinhooking prospect for Bregman, who has a life-long interest in the sport, has started a racing and breeding operation.
"He was in a 2-year-old sale and they didn't end up getting what they thought was fair money for the horse so he kept him and raced him," Weaver said. "Luckily, I happen to be the beneficiary of that."
Weaver said he was asked if he could get the colt ready in 17 days for the male Royal Ascot qualifier at Gulfstream Park.
"I'm never one to say no," he said.
In his racing debut, No Nay Mets win by 3 ½ lengths. He ended up 7 ¼ lengths back at Royal Ascot. Since then, he's won stakes at Monmouth Park and Colonial Downs.
"A nice, easy horse to train," Weaver said. "He's very classy. Understands what his job is. He's fast. Knows how to go over there and get it done.
"Not really sure what happened over at Ascot. Maybe he just needs to be put into the race like he has been over here in the States. Maybe he just didn't handle that course. Anyway, other than the Ascot race, he's been pretty impressive. He's won by open lengths in all three starts in United States. It's not going to surprise me if he does that again."
Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint Debuted in the 2018 Championships
The Breeders' Cup implemented in 2018 the promotion of the undercard Juvenile Turf Sprint, an open race for both genders, to the Breeders' Cup World Championships program. The Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint carries a $1 million purse. The race will be run at about 5.5 furlongs on the turf and will be open to all 2-year-olds.
With the addition of the Juvenile Turf Sprint, there are now 14 races in this year's World Championships plus an additional $1 million in undercard purses. Total purses and awards for the 2020 event will now exceed $30 million.
"The upgrade of the Juvenile Turf Sprint is in response to the increasing popularity of turf racing in North America and will fill a need for international turf sprint sires," said Dora Delgado, Breeders' Cup Senior Vice President of Racing and Nominations. "Each year, the Juvenile Turf and the Juvenile Fillies Turf are oversubscribed at the Championships. We feel that Juvenile Turf Sprint will also be a popular draw among horsemen from North America and overseas stables and will generate interest among North American racetracks to card races in this division."
What is the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint?
The Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint is an American Thoroughbred horse race for two-year-old horses, run on a grass course at a distance of 5½ furlongs. It is part of the Breeders' Cup World Championships, the de facto year-end championship for North American thoroughbred racing. All Breeders' Cups to date have been conducted in the United States, with the exception of the 1996 event in Canada.
The race will be run for the first time as a Breeders' Cup Championship race in 2019 during the first day of the Breeders' Cup at host track, Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Prior to 2019 the Juvenile Turf Sprint was run as an undercard race at the Breeders' Cup.
Breeders Cup' Juvenile Turf Sprint Winners
|2022||Mischief Magic||William Buick||Charlie Appleby||1:02.41|
|2021||Twilight Gleaming||Irad Ortiz, Jr.||Wesley Ward||:56.24|
|2020||Golden Pal||Irad Ortiz, Jr.||Wesley Ward||1:02.82|
|2019||Four Wheel Drive||Irad Ortiz, Jr.||Wesley Ward||:55.66|
|2018||Bulletin||Javier Castellano||Todd Pletcher||1:05.54|