Brave second for Mystic Guide in G1 Jockey Club Gold Cup
Mystic Guide put up another career-best effort with a battling second in the G1 Jockey Club Gold Cup over a mile and a quarter on dirt at Belmont Park, USA, on Saturday, 10 October.
The Ghostzapper colt, stretching out in trip for trainer Michael Stidham following a swooping win in the nine-furlong G2 Jim Dandy Stakes at Saratoga on Saturday, 5 September, raced in third of the five-strong field early on behind Tacitus and Happy Saver.
Mystic Guide joined Happy Saver entering the back straight before moving up to a clear second with five furlongs to race. Both the Godolphin homebred and Happy Saver laid down strong challenges to Tacitus in the straight, with all three horses holding every chance a furlong and a half out.
Happy Saver opened up a narrow advantage passing the furlong-pole, with Mystic Guide rallying strongly under John Velazquez as the two three-year-olds quickened away. Mystic Guide continued to battle but could not go with Happy Saver near the line, coming home three-quarters of a length behind the undefeated winner.
Godolphin USA President Jimmy Bell said: “Mystic Guide proved that he wanted every bit of a mile and a quarter, which was the question we wanted answered, and he galloped out very strongly. He ran 47 feet further than the winner and really took another big step forward.
“He continues to run a little bit better with every race. The competition has got deeper and the distance further, but he has handled it very well. It bodes nicely for next year as we feel that he is going to be a lovely older horse for us.”