‘Horse Of The Year Candidate’ Midnight Bisou Ready For Distaff

by | 09.29.2019 | 2:48pm
Midnight Bisou (Midnight Lute) and jockey John Velazquez win the Beldame (Gr II) at Belmont Park 9/28/19. Trainer: Steve Asmussen. Owner: Bloom Racing Stable, Madaket Stables LLC, & Allen Racing LLC

Bloom Racing Stable, Madaket Stables and Allen Racing's Midnight Bisou came out of her 3 ¼-length win in Saturday's Grade 2, $300,000 Beldame in good order, co-owner Jeff Bloom said Sunday morning. Bloom said her victory at 1 1/8 miles on Belmont Park's fast main track will set her up for the Grade 1, $2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff on November 2 at Santa Anita Park.

Midnight Bisou overcame multiple bumps against the chute in the Beldame to still be forwardly placed, staying off Spring in the Wind's early fractions before taking command a drawing away to stay undefeated in her 4-year-old campaign. The daughter of Midnight Lute improved to 7-for-7 this year, with all victories against graded stakes company.

“Words can't describe it. She's a remarkable filly who has provided all of us with a run of a lifetime,” Bloom said. “Yesterday's performance was just another validation of her talent.”

With John Velazquez picking up the mount from fellow Hall of Famer Mike Smith, Midnight Bisou won for the second straight time at the Distaff's distance of 1 1/8 miles, adding to her victory by a neck over Elate in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign on Travers Day, August 24, at Saratoga Race Course. She also improved to 3-for-3 all-time at Belmont, adding to her 3 ½-length score in the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps on Belmont Stakes Day June 8 and the 2018 Grade 2 Mother Goose.

“She came out of the race in excellent shape; as good as she went into it,” Bloom said. “She's scheduled to ship out tomorrow to fly west and go to her new home base for fall in Santa Anita for the Breeders' Cup Distaff.”

Midnight Bisou's last loss came in last year's Breeders' Cup Distaff, where she finished a competitive third behind Wow Cat and the winner Monomoy Girl at Churchill Downs. The Steve Asmussen trainee has never finished off the board in 18 career starts, compiling a 12-3-3 record with earnings of $3.41 million for the Hall of Fame conditioner.

This year, Midnight Bisou has amassed wins at five different tracks, including the Grade 3 Houston Ladies Classic at Sam Houston, the Grade 2 Azeri and Grade 1 Apple Blossom Handicap at Oaklawn Park and the Grade 3 Molly Pitcher at Monmouth Park in addition to her success at the Spa and Belmont.

Midnight Bisou has beaten five-time graded stakes Elate in all three meetings this year, including the Azeri and the Personal Ensign in which they ran 1-2. That success propelled Midnight Bisou to second behind Bricks and Mortar in the latest National Thoroughbred Racing Association Top Thoroughbred Poll, making her a strong contender for Eclipse Awards for both Older Dirt Female and, potentially, Horse of the Year.

“Just objectively looking at the body of her work and her campaign starting in January, she's showed up every time and had to battle against the best and she's beaten them all to this point,” Bloom said. “She has quality and quantity and a great resume. Certainly, capping things off in the Distaff would be a huge statement and one would have to think If you compare her to others and what they are doing, she's a Horse of the Year candidate.”

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