Queen’s Trust beats Lady Eli in Filly & Mare Turf thriller
Queen's Trust (far side) beats the brave Lady Eli on the nod
PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos) Queen's Trust wins thrilling Filly & Mare
By Tony McFadden 7:55PM 5 NOV 2016
Report: Santa Anita, Saturday
Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (Grade 1) 1m2f, turf, 3yo+, fillies and mares
QUEEN'S TRUST, expertly ridden by Frankie Dettori, beat leading US hope Lady Eli in a thrilling finish to the Filly & Mare Turf, becoming the first European-trained winner at the 2016 Breeders' Cup.
In a race run at a frenetic gallop, Dettori held Queen's Trust up towards the rear and tracked Lady Eli before delivering a telling burst down the straight to collar the favourite in the final strides and win by a nose.
Avenge, who cut out the strong early gallop, ran a stormer to finish third a length and a half behind the principals.
Following the race Dettori paid tribute to Freddy Tylicki, who suffered paralysis to the lower half of his body after a fall at Kempton on Monday.
Dettori said: "We are thinking of you Freddy, we are praying for you pal."
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Trained by Sir Michael Stoute, Queen's Trust had been placed three times in Group 1s in Britain but gained a deserved success at the highest level on her first start in America.
Regarding the narrow victory, Dettori said: "Sir Michael Stoute is a genius and he was very sweet on this filly. Today everything went perfect, she found an extra gear in the last 100 yards and we got it on the line.
"I think the fast pace of American races played to her strengths, she has got a good kick and they went very fast up front."
Dettori marked his 12th Breeders' Cup triumph with a trademark flying dismount, which raised a huge cheer from the crowd.
Sir Michael Stoute, who was celebrating a seventh win at the Breeders' Cup, said: "I've always thought highly of this filly, she's been unlucky on a few occasions this seasons. It's wonderful for Cheveley Park [owners].
"She ran a great race behind Minding the Nassau, she hadn't had a tough season and I thought I'd like to have a crack at this."
Dettori will be hailed for his superb ride this side of the Atlantic but will be less popular Stateside due to the tale behind the runner-up.
Lady Eli looked a horse out of the top drawer when winning the Juvenile Fillies Turf at the 2014 Breeders' Cup on her final start as a two-year-old and won three more times the following season, maintaining her unbeaten record. However, her campaign was cut short after developing a life-threatening bout of laminitis.
She bravely battled back from that serious setback and, following a good second at Saratoga and a win at Belmont, looked set to cap a remarkable comeback when hitting the front close home, only to be overhauled by the fast-finishing Queen's Trust.
Aidan O'Brien saddled Seventh Heaven, who finished a creditable fourth, and Pretty Perfect, who trailed home in last.
He said: "Seventh Heaven ran very well – we're very happy with her. It was a good-run race and we know she stays a mile and a half.
"Pretty Perfect will probably be retired to stud now."
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