DEL MAR, Calif. – DMM Dream Club Co.’s Loves Only You (JPN) ($10.60) split horses in deep stretch to prevail by a half-length over My Sister Nat (FR) to win the 23rd running of the $2 million Maker’s Mark Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1) for 3-year-olds and up Saturday afternoon at Del Mar.
Trained by Yoshito Yahagi and ridden by Yuga Kawada, Loves Only You covered the 1 3/8 miles on a firm Jimmy Durante Turf Course in 2:13.87. Yahagi and Kawada were making their Breeders’ Cup debuts.
Going to Vegas led the field early with minimal pressure from Dogtag and Pocket Square (GB) as Loves Only You tracked closely behind the leaders.
The race’s complexion changed on the far turn as favored War Like Goddess moved five wide to the lead with Love (IRE) going right with her to her inside. Those two pulled clear in mid-stretch but My Sister Nat made first run at War Like Goddess only to have Loves Only You split those two late in the stretch and pull away.
A 5-year-old mare, Loves Only You is a daughter of Deep Impact (JPN) out of the Storm Cat mare Loves Only Me. The victory was worth $1,040,000 and increased her earnings to $6,493,602 with a record of 15-7-2-3. It is her third Grade or Group 1 victory.
Maker’s Mark Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf Quotes
Winning Trainer Yoshito Yahagi (Loves Only You) – “I’d like to say thank you to my horse. She did a great job. It’s a dream come true for Japanese horse racing history. I’d love to come back Breeders’ Cup at Keeneland next year and do the same thing, to win!”
Trainer Chad Brown (My Sister Nat (FR), second) – “My Sister Nat ran great. Pocket Square just couldn’t run that far. Jose (Ortiz) rode a great race. We had a plan to follow War Like Goddess, which he executed perfectly. I just said, ‘if you have any chance to win, just follow her and draw alongside of her in the stretch and if our horse is good enough battle it out.’ That’s what Jose did. I’m so proud of this mare. It’s bittersweet because she ran the race of her life, but it was her last race, and unfortunately, she never got that Grade 1 win that she deserves. She had a couple of tough beats. Nevertheless, she is off to the breeding shed and she has been a wonderful mare to train. I look forward to training her babies.”
Trainer Bill Mott (War Like Goddess, third as favorite) – “Being third’s not as good as first. She ran hard. She made the lead a little early, maybe, and was a little wide off the turn – didn’t have much choice about that.”
Jockey Julien Leparoux (War Like Goddess, third as favorite) – “We had a good trip. She was nice and relaxed relaxed early. Just before the three-eighths pole she took a hold of the bridle on her own and made that big move. I had to go on with her then and we got carried wide. It was sooner than I would have liked. She ran a very good race.”
Jockey Ryan Moore (Love, fourth) – “She ran well just not good enough on the day.”
Jockey William Buick (defending winner Audarya, fifth) – “She ran a very big race considering the run we had. She got boxed in then denied a clear but ran on strong to the line.”
Jockey Oisin Murphy (Ocean Road, sixth) – “Had a great run round and she’s put up a good performance.”
Trainer Hugo Palmer (Ocean Road, sixth) – “She ran very well and is going to be a lovely filly for next year. I expect her to keep improving.”
Breeders’ Cup Press Release