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Breeders' Cup: After regaining his form under Wes Ward, Golden Pal targeted Keeneland in search of a hat-trick
Breeders' Cup: After regaining his form under Wes Ward, Golden Pal targeted Keeneland in search of a hat-trick
Breeders' Cup: After regaining his form under Wes Ward, Golden Pal targeted Keeneland in search of a hat-trick
Horse racing Breeders' Cup: After regaining his form under Wes Ward, Golden Pal targeted...

Breeders’ Cup: After regaining his form under Wes Ward, Golden Pal targeted Keeneland in search of a hat-trick

Breeders’ Cup: Golden Pal is focused on winning his third Breeders’ Cup after putting his disappointing performance at Royal Ascot behind him with a victory at Saratoga on Friday.

At a hotly anticipated international match against Australia’s Nature Strip in the King’s Stand in June, Wesley Ward’s American speedball proved bitterly disappointing, blowing the start before being hurried up to challenge and then fading to finish last of 16 runners.

Dropping in for the Grade Three Troy Stakes, Golden Pal was pulled up for pressure by Irad Ortiz Jr. after being placed behind the pacesetters and won by a head.

The four-year-old won both the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint in 2020 and the Turf Sprint the previous campaign. While Ward is thinking about switching to dirt for his next start, it’s most probable that he will defend his Turf Sprint championship at Keeneland, where he is most at home.

Ward said: “Friday was great. He came back from Ascot in good order and everything has gone super.

“We tried a new tactic by following the leader and everything worked out. That was our plan going in and if you watch the head-on the ground kind of broke out from underneath him, which helped the rider.

“We’ll get back to Keeneland and get him settled back into his stall. In around two weeks we’ll possibly give him a few dirt works and we could look to run in the Phoenix Stakes, which is on the dirt on the opening weekend at Keeneland in October.

“It depends on his dirt works and how he’s progressing, but that could be his prep race for the Breeders’ Cup, probably on the turf rather than the dirt, regardless of how he runs.”

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