Trainer Brian Lynch pulled off a second triple crown shock on Sunday when the maiden Miami Deco captured the Breeders’ Stakes, the third leg of the Canadian trilogy, at odds of 60-1 for owners Jim and Susan Hill.
Brian Lynch and Richard Dos Ramos celebrate a Breeders' Stakes upset
The victory came just a few short weeks after Lynch pointed the mysterious Golden Moka, who had previously raced only in Panama, to a 10-1 surprise in the Prince of Wales stakes. In fact, if there was a triple crown bonus on offer this year, Lynch would have a right to stake a claim as he also played a part in the development of Queen’s Plate winner Big Red Mike who spent part of the winter training with Lynch at Palm Meadows.
Lynch, in addition to being a confident conditioner, is widely regarded as one of the funniest folks on the backstretch. On his arrival in the press box with jockey Richard Dos Ramos for post-race interviews regarding the 60-1 masterpiece, one member of the media offered, “We didn’t expect to see you here.”
'Well, you were the first guys we expected to see," laughed the good natured Lynch.
The affable Australian, who once worked as an assistant to the late, great Bobby Frankel, was honest in the face of the obvious question - how does he keep these mystery horses a secret.
“I'm not one that likes to promote a supplement that's going to be 60-1,” grinned Lynch. “Frankel always used to say to me, ‘don't tell me, show me’.”
It was the Gustav Schickedanz filly, Silent Wisper, who showed the way in the Breeders’ Stakes leading a field of thirteen through fractions of :24.67, :48.84 and 1:14.69. The fractions made for quick going on a tiring turf course and Stormy Lord and Cognashene smartly stalked the pace, while Miami Deco and jockey Richard Dos Ramos waited patiently near the back of the pack.
With Silent Wisper tiring on the turn, the duo of Stormy Lord and Cognashene picked up the lead hitting ten furlongs in 2:07.63. Having waited patiently through the far turn, jockey Dos Ramos opened up Miami Deco and his charge responded quickly picking up rivals one-by-one though still several lengths off the dueling rivals, Cognashene and Stormy Lord.
Stormy Lord broke well in the Breeders' Stakes
The combination of a quick pace and a wet turf pushed Cognashene to the limit in the stretch run and the young horse drifted sharply into the middle of the track. Jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva, with two quick cracks of the whip, got Cognashene back on course nearly bumping into a hard-trying Stormy Lord in the process. Dos Ramos, meanwhile, niftily urged his horse off the rail to circle one last rival and then darted back to the inside, always quickening, to make up the necessary ground on the leaders.
Miami Deco (#2) darts to the rail
With the race still in the balance, Stormy Lord responded bravely to the challenge of Miami Deco and dug in for one last run. The scrappy Kinghaven gelding, under a ride from Jim McAleney, fought for a few more strides but a galloping Miami Deco was art-in-motion passing Stormy Lord in the shadow of the wire to score his first career victory by three-quarters of a length in 2:34.24.
It was the third win in this event for Dos Ramos and it came on a horse the jockey knew sparingly.
“I saw him for the first time yesterday morning,” laughed Dos Ramos. “The next time I seen him was in the paddock.”
When asked if Lynch had provided the jock with meaningful pre-race instructions, Dos Ramos replied, “Ray Sabourin (exercise rider for Miami Deco) gave me some instructions. I said to Brian, ‘you don't have to tell me anything, Ray told me everything I need to know’ and Brian said 'oh my God two pinheads talking...’"
Miami Deco hits the wire first
All joking aside, that Miami Deco made his move along the rail was no accident.
“I stayed on the rail most of the way, it was something Brian and I talked about, and then when I needed some room, I moved him to the outside and I could see the front horses were drifting out so I moved him back to the inside,” explained Dos Ramos.
Lynch was secretly confident that his horse would get the mile and a half distance of the Breeders’.
“As we call them in Australia, he's a galloper,” said Lynch. “He can gallop all day and he's got a good long stride that he can clip along at a good gait and then quicken up in the last three eighths. When you go a mile and a half, as long as you can sustain it, and quicken up in the last part then you're golden.”
For the victory, Miami Deco earned $300,000. But it was the money the horse earned the punters, at a record-setting 60-1, that was the real talking point shattering the mark set just last year by Roger Attfield's Perfect Shower who paid $95.30 to win the 2009 edition of the race.
All told, Miami Deco paid $132.10, $42, $17.70, combining with Stormy Lord ($5, $3.80) for a $760.40 exactor. Cognashene, the 10-4 favourite, was third and rounded out the $5,472.90 triactor. Abogado, at 78-1, was fourth and rounded out a spectacular $21,198.75 Superfecta.
The happy connections pose in the winners circle
“As much respect as I have for Roger Attfield, and he won one at 40-1 last year, I wanted to top him at 60-1,” quipped Lynch, before adding, with regard to his supplemented horse, “There were quite a few of us taking a shot. I'm a gambler and I figured we'd take a shot with him.”
While the gambling Lynch admitted he’d taken a punt with Miami Deco, the conditioner could only shrug his shoulders when asked for the name of his next Woodbine whodunit.
“That's how we keep ‘em mysteries,” grinned Lynch. “We zip it!”
Miami Deco wins the Breeders' Stakes
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I will have more photos from Breeders' Stakes Sunday posted tomorrow. As always, keep track of the latest goings on in the world of horse racing by clicking into TripleDeadHeat's Woodbine News page.