The brilliant mare Beholder, who was the 3-1 second choice on the morning line for Saturday’s $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1), will scratch according to her trainer Richard Mandella.
Mandella said this morning that the mare has “irritated tissue in her lung” that caused bleeding after doing her morning work on Thursday. The mare also spiked a fever upon arriving in Kentucky, but her temperature was back to normal the following afternoon.
“There’s obviously some irritated lung tissue there,” Mandella said at this morning’s press conference. “She will be fine, but if I put her under the pressure of a race situation, it could cause some real damage. This was obviously due to the fever she had when she arrived. You could say we just haven’t had any luck shipping, but it’s been something different every time. She’s an aggressive mare and just got herself worked up shipping and made herself sick.”
Mandella stated that the plan is still to run the mare next year.
She has won 15 of her 20 career starts including winning the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) and the 2013 Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1). She was already proven against males, winning the Pacific Classic (G1) at Del Mar in August by 8 ¼ lengths.
Her defection could make things even easier for Triple Crown winner American Pharoah as there is a lack of early speed in the race. American Pharoah is the 6-5 morning line favorite and his price is now expected to go even lower.
Beholder was attempting to become just the second female to win the Classic. Zenyatta was the first, winning in 2009 and she suffered her only loss in her career when she ran second in the 2010 edition behind Blame.
Michael’s Breeders’ Cup Report includes his selections, analysis, fair odds line, and wagering recommendations for every race on the card from Keeneland on Oc. 30-31.
The Breeders’ Cup offers 12 championship races over two days, bringing together the best top horses, trainers, and jockeys from around the world, this year to compete at Keeneland.
In 2013 on Breeders’ Cup Saturday Mike nailed seven recommended exactas, paying $53.20, $19.00, $23.20, $58.00, $66.60, $107.80, and $33.60!