Cody’s Wish Favored in Dirt Mile

November 4, 2022

Coady’s Wish getting a jog in at Keeneland. Coady Photography

The namesake of Cody’s Wish, 16-year-old Cody Dorman, who met the colt when a foal at Godolphin’s Gainsborough Farm

Breeders’ Cup Notes/Edited 

LEXINGTON, Ky.—Godolphin’s Bill Mott-trained Cody’s Wish will attempt to live up his 5-2 morning line favoritism in the Big Ass Fans Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) on Saturday. The Godolphin homebred son of Classic winner Curlin and Grade 1 winner Dance Card had another routine day Thursday, galloping on the dirt track. He will be piloted by Junior Alvarado on Saturday from post seven of 11.

The bay 4yo colt has won six of his last seven, including the G1 Forego last out over 7f and five one-turn miles, topped by the G3 Westchester at Belmont in May. In the Forego, he defeated the nation’s top-ranked sprinter, Jackie’s Warrior in a swift time of 1:20 4/5.

“He’s coming off a great race in the Forego, beating probably the top sprinter in the country going seven-eighths, of course,” Mott said. “He hasn’t run since then, so he’s coming in the race fresh and doing really well. We’re happy with him. The difference with him is this is a two-turn race and we feel like he’s really good at a mile. I’m uncertain how the two turns and different configuration will be for him.

“He’s a great big horse and the reason I always like a one-turn mile is because it gave him plenty of time to get into his stride going down a long backside. He could get into his rhythm and start his run,” Mott continued. “A horse like that, you don’t know that if he gets jammed up on the first turn, if it’ll influence how he’s going to be able to get himself back together again. Tactically, it’s probably a little bit different kind of a race than he’s been in the last couple times, but he’s very talented and it’s a really great story.”

Mott alluded to the namesake of Cody’s Wish, 16-year-old Cody Dorman, who met the colt when a foal at Godolphin’s Gainsborough Farm. The interaction was brought together as part of Keeneland’s association with the Make A Wish Foundation.

Afflicted with Wolf-Hirschhorn Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder, Dorman has followed Cody’s Wish’s career closely and – despite being unable to walk or speak and forced to communicate through a tablet – has even made accurate predictions to the horse’s performances on the track.

On Wednesday afternoon, Dorman and family visited Cody’s Wish at Mott’s Keeneland barn. The Dirt Mile favorite was led out by Mott and rested his head on Cody’s lap.

“The horse did it again,” father Kelly Dorman said. “He put his head in Cody’s lap and even rubbed his muzzle against his cheek. I lost it. My knees are still weak. Everyone there teared up. It was the most powerful thing I’ve ever seen.”   

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