Horse racing had some memorable moments in 2020 despite the year being tough. Tracks were shut down, schedules scrambled, and stands remained empty. But horse racing provided its fans with the much-needed distraction with some memorable moments. For instance, the Cheltenham 2020 festival at cheltenhamguide.com was among the top horse racing events of 2020. Read further to discover some of the most memorable moments in horse racing in 2020.
Monomoy Girl made a comeback after being sidelined last season by a colic attack and a gluteal strain. Moreover, she made her comeback in style with a win at the Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff. The win brought back memories of her success in the race in 2018.
Tapizar’s five-year-old daughter was flawless in all four starts in 2020. Trainer Brad Cox slowly brought her along, leading to a compelling 1 ¾-length decision against Valiance in the Distaff for rider Florent Geroux.
The Huge Weekend
Cox won four Breeder’s Cup races turning Keeneland into some sort of a personal playground. He reached the winner’s circle with Essential Quality, Aunt Pearl, Knicks Go, and Monomoy Girl. The wins saw him match the four wins recorded by Richard Mandella, a Hall of Famer, at Mandella’s home track of Santa Anita Park back in 1993. Back then, the Breeders’ Cup was held in a day and offered fewer races.
Whitmore’s Fourth Time Lucky
Whitmore needed four attempts at the Breeders’ Cup Sprint to win it. In the past three years, he managed to finish eighth, second, and third. He finally got the breakthrough aged 7 when he burst away by 3 ¼ lengths for trainer Ron Moquett and jockey Irad Ortiz Jr.
Whitmore’s best hour came in his 38th start, which raised his bankroll to 4,247,850 GBP. His trainer said that they would do their best to ensure they get the best out of him and make it effortless for him to perform better.
A great bargain
Mark Schwartz paid 5,000 GBP at a time he was searching for a decent horse. However, he purchased a 2021 Kentucky contender when the young horse prevailed by a neck in the Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct in December. The Remsen recorded a third victory in four starts for Wicked Strong’s son bred in New York.
Following those performances, his earnings jumped to 195,000 GBP and earned him a spot on the Churchill leaderboard with 10 Derby qualifying points. Schwartz claimed that the achievements were like a dream and that he never envisioned himself in that position. Daniel Velazquez is Brooklyn Strong’s trainer.
Authentic put any doubts on his quality to rest with a front-running 2 ¼ length triumph against stablemate Improbable. The race was the Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic held at Keeneland; he ran the 1 ¼ mile in a record 1:29.60. In the process, he became the fourth Kentucky Derby winner in the same year. He joined the elite league of American Pharoah, Unbridled and Sunday Silence.
Bob Baffert assured John Velazquez that he could ride him with confidence; he could be aggressive and do whatever he wanted. True to the Hall of Famer’s words, Valazquez went on to win his first victory in the Classic. Authentic was awarded the Secretariat Vox Populi Award from fans’ votes.