BC Turf-winner Rebel’s Romance works for G2 Bowling Green

July 29, 2023

Rebel’s Romance winning the BC Turf. (Courtney Snow/Past The Wire)

Saratoga Race Course Notes

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Godolphin’s Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Turf winner Rebel’s Romance went a half-mile solo in 48.11 seconds over the Oklahoma training turf course on Friday, two days out from his start in the Grade 2, $250,000 Bowling Green at Saratoga Race Course.

Under the watchful eye of trainer Charlie Appleby’s traveling assistant Chris Connett, Rebel’s Romance joined fellow Godolphin-owned Appleby trainees Silver Knott and Mysterious Night – both targeting the Grade 2, $500,000 Hall of Fame on August 5 – for a 10 a.m. visit to the training turf. 

Rebel’s Romance, who enters from an uncharacteristic seventh in the Group 1 Dubai Sheema Classic in March at Meydan Racecourse, has been tabbed the 8-5 morning line favorite in the 10-horse field and will leave from post 9 in rein to Richie Mullen. 

“Rebel’s Romance had a nice canter and picked it up down the lane for just a little blowout for his run on Sunday,” Connett said. “He drew stall 9 which I don’t think is a worry for him. He’s a horse that likes to make a late run anyway, so Richie will jump him out and float him into position and hopefully he comes with a nice strong run towards the end.”

Rebel’s Romance out of quarantine. (Susie Raisher)

Rebel’s Romance, a 4-year-old Dubawi gelding, captured last year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf in November at Keeneland, providing international racing and breeding powerhouse Godolphin with their fifth victory in the prestigious race. 

A winner in four different countries, the Charlie Appleby-trained 5-year-old Dubawi gelding captured Germany’s Group 1 Grosser Preis von Berlin at Hoppegarten and Group 1 Preis von Europa at Cologne en route to his Breeders’ Cup conquest, where he came from 10th-of-13 to secure a 2 1/4-length victory over fellow European invader Stone Age.

Connett said he is hopeful that Rebel’s Romance can pursue a return engagement in this year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf on November 4 at Santa Anita. Godolphin has enjoyed previous success in the Turf with Daylami [1999], Fantastic Light [2000], Talismanic [2001], and Yibir [2021].

“Like so many Dubawis, he’s gotten bigger and stronger as he got older,” Connett said. “He had a frame to fill into and he’s certainly getting there. He’s a triple Group 1 winner, a Breeders’ Cup winner and hopefully that will be on the radar at the end of the season. But those decisions get left to Charlie.”

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