Space Blues bows out in style with exceptional G1 Breeders’ Cup Mile display
Space Blues claimed a third G1 victory on his final racecourse appearance with a scintillating win in the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Del Mar, USA, on Saturday, 6 November.
The Dubawi entire had previously established himself as one of the world’s top seven-furlong horses and headed out to California after easily taking the Prix de la Foret on Arc weekend, one of two French G1 triumphs for the Charlie Appleby-trained five-year-old.
In a mirroring of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf 24 hours earlier, in which Modern Games was successful after Albahr was a late withdrawal, Master Of The Seas was scratched before the start after getting fractious in the stalls.
Having broken on terms, Space Blues soon raced in third on the inner rail behind Smooth Like Strait and Blowout, with Got Stormy settling in a close fourth on the outside of the Godolphin runner.
Space Blues moved up to press Blowout leaving the back straight and went a clear second turning in. He showed his customary turn of foot for William Buick in the lane, picking up Smooth Like Strait with just under half a furlong to race before going on for a cosy half-length verdict.
Godolphin USA President Jimmy Bell said: “It’s rather surreal and déjà vu all over again. This is live racing, with live horses and it’s part of the game. It’s a testament to what Charlie and William do, getting these horses over here, overcoming the situations and showing them to be the champions they are. Congratulations to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, what a great day.”
Charlie Appleby said: “I am absolutely delighted with Space Blues. He has been a fantastic horse and will now be retired to stud. William gave him a great ride and was in the perfect position throughout.
“Space Blues has been a great servant and it’s another well-deserved win. I’m thrilled for team Godolphin both here and back home at Moulton Paddocks in Newmarket and obviously His Highness Sheikh Mohammed.
“It was an interesting race beforehand with Master of The Seas being scratched but we’re getting used to that now! Rules are rules and we have to abide by them.”
William Buick said: “Coming here I knew I had some very good rides. Space Blues travelled to America very well and Charlie has been delighted with all of our horses coming into the races. We know how tough it is to come here and everything needs to pan out for you to win.
“He’s a great little horse and I don’t think he’s had the recognition he deserves. A mile round here suits him down to the ground. I was a bit nervous going into the race as I wanted to give the horse what he deserved.”