Trainer Christophe Clement, who sent out Castleton Lyons' Gio Ponti to win Saturday's $600,000 Shadwell Turf Mile (G1), said the dual champion would return to New York on Monday and continue preparations for his next start on November 6 during the Breeders' Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs.
“He will enter one of the Breeders' Cup races; I'm not sure which one,” said Clement, referring to either the TVG Breeders' Cup Mile (G1) or the Breeders' Cup Classic (G1).
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With regular rider Ramon Dominguez aboard, Gio Ponti split horses in the stretch and won the Shadwell Turf Mile by a length over 18-1 longshot Society's Chairman. The victory marked Gio Ponti's fourth win in five career starts at a mile. He entered the race, his first start at the distance since March 2009, after running second in the 1¼-mile Arlington Million (G1) on August 21.
“The distance was never an issue for us,” Clement said, referring to the Shadwell Turf Mile.
Gio Ponti, a 5-year-old son of Tale of the Cat, now has 11 wins in 22 career starts and has earned $4,677,800. Among his 10 stakes wins are victories in the Man o' War (G1) in 2009 and again this year. Gio Ponti won Keeneland's Bourbon as a 2-year-old.
Clement, the leading trainer during Keeneland's spring season with nine wins, remains here today and will send out five horses in the 10 races. Among them is Mrs. C. Wilson McNeely III's Funny Moon in the Juddmonte Spinster (G1).
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