It took several minutes to finalize the winnner of Friday's $1 million Juvenile Turf, but when the results went official, Line of Duty (IRE) had provided Godolphin with its eighth Breeders' Cup victory.
Soon after the son of Galileo, under William Buick, crossed the wire in front of Uncle Benny, the inquiry and objection signs lit up, with Uncle Benny's rider Irad Ortiz, Jr., claiming foul as the two horses collided just before the wire. It took stewards close to 10 minutes to sort things bout before keeping Line of Duty the winner. The colt, who went off as the 7-2 second choice after being bet down from 10-1, finished a half length ahead of Uncle Benny (8-1), while Somelikeithotbrown held for third at 15-1.The final time for the mile over a good Churchill Downs turf was 1:40.06.
The victory was the third Breeders' win for trainer Charles Appleby, who won the Juvenile in 2013 with Outstrip (GB) and was victorious in last year's Filly & Mare Turf with Wuheida *(GB). Buick was aboard Wueida for his first Breeders' Cup win. The Juvenile Turf was his second.
Somelikeithotbrown took up the earning running, getting a good jump from the gate and going straight to the front. Both Line of Duty took up positions in mid-pack as the leader clicked off fractions of 24.40, 48.45 and 1:13.60. Somelikeithotbrown still had the lead turning for home, but both Line of Duty and Uncle Benny began making moves, with the former going outside and Uncle Benny taking an inside route. They came together close to the wire and bumped, causing the inquiry/objection.
The Juvenile Turf was Line of Duty's third win in a row and third from five career starts. He's finished no worse than second and came into the Breeders' Cup having won at Chantilly in a Group 3 Oct. 18.
Winning trainer Charlie Appleby (Line of Duty) – “It's lovely to be here. William (Buick) gave him a great ride. He managed to get him wide and come with a clear run. It's great for the team and especially Sheikh Mohammad.”
Winning jockey William Buick (Line of Duty) – “Obviously, I am relieved that we have kept the race. He has put up a great performance to go on and win.”
Second-place trainer Jason Servis (Uncle Benny) – “It looked like he banged him pretty good. I got beat a neck. But, my dad was a steward for 40 years, and you've got to respect their opinions.
“He's been doing very well. I expected him to run well.”
Second-place jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. (Uncle Benny) – “I had to check going to the quarter pole. That's why I claimed foul. He ran huge.”
Third-place trainer Mike Maker (Somelikeithotbrown) – “He ran dynamite. He's a great horse to have in the barn. He's getting better. On Henley's Joy: “I don't think he liked the ground too much. It was too soft for him.”
Third-place jockey Jose Ortiz (Somelikeithotbrown) – “He gave me his best and dug in when he felt the horses to the outside of him. It was a brave effort. We are very happy with the race that he ran.”
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