Winner's future is threatened by leg fractures

November 06, 1994|By Ross Peddicord | Ross Peddicord,Sun Staff Writer

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- When Flanders won a stretch-long duel over stablemate Serena's Song in the $1 million Juvenile Fillies stakes, she was the only winner on the Breeders' Cup card not to make it back to the winner's circle.

When jockey Pat Day was pulling up the horse, he felt her limping in the left fore leg and hopped off.

Instead of jogging back for the victory presentation, Flanders was loaded on a horse ambulance and taken to the stable area.

As it turned out, Flanders suffered double fractures in the right front leg. And though the injury is not life-threatening, it is uncertain whether she will race again.

Veterinarian Robert Copelan said surgery will be necessary and bone screws and a pin will be inserted to hold the leg together.

Another veterinarian, Wayne McIlwraith, said the fracture is similar to the one that last year's 2-year-old champion, Dehere, suffered in a hind leg.

It is uncertain when the injury occurred. But there's no question Flanders gave it her all in the head triumph over Serena's Song.

Barathea's practice rail

When English-trained colt Barathea ran in the Mile at Santa Anita Park last year, he had little experience running around turns and drifted far wide on the first turn, causing numerous bad trips among the other runners. Barathea ended up fifth.

To get ready for this year's race, trainer Luca Cumani ordered a blueprint of the turf course first turn from Churchill Downs and asked the manager at the Newmarket race course in England to construct one just like it so the horse could practice.

"It cost next to nothing," Cumani said. "It was a just a set of plastic rails."

Barathea, who drew the one-post yesterday, negotiated the Churchill turns perfectly, winning $520,000. The horse will now be retired to stud in Ireland.

Frankie Dettori, who rode Barathea, was the only European rider to win on yesterday's card. The other European equine winner, Tikkanen, who is owned by George Strawbridge's Augustin Stable of Chester County, Pa., was ridden by Mike Smith "after nTC his agent harassed me unmercifully," said trainer Jonathan Pease.

Tikkanen, a Pennsylvania-bred, was sent to race in France like many Strawbridge runners, because of his turf pedigree. The horse is named after NHL player Esa Tikkanen. Strawbridge is part owner of the Buffalo Sabres.

Although Tikkanen is only 3, he has run races this year in five


Division champs decided

A number of national championships were decided after Breeders' Cup victories yesterday. These most likely include Cherokee Run (Sprint), Flanders (2-year-old Filly) and Timber Country (2-year-old Colt). Timber Country is closely related to Maryland stallion, Allen's Prospect.

Although Paradise Creek, Sky Beauty and heavenly Prize all lost yesterday, they will probably earn divisional honors for Turf Horse, 4-year-old & up Filly and Mare, and 3-year-old filly, respectively.

Holy Bull, a non-Breeders' Cup starter, will likely be named champion 3-year-old and Horse of the Year.


Cherokee Run became the first supplementary entry to win a Breeders' Cup race since Paseana in 1992. Cherokee Run, not originally nominated as a young horse to the Breeders' Cup program, needed to be supplemented at a cost of $120,000, but earned $520,000. . . . Soviet Problem, who lost to Cherokee Run, was sent off the second choice in the Sprint, the first time in her 18-start career that she has not been favored. . . . In addition to his wife, Jane, Robert Meyerhoff was accompanied to Louisville by his sons, John and Neil Meyerhoff. . . . Mike Smith said that favored Lure failed in his three-peat attempt to win the Mile because he was cut down on the backstretch from behind by another horse. "After that, his heart wasn't in it." . . . Both turf victories were established by setting course records at Churchill Downs by Barathea and Tikkanen. . . . Concern is the second Maryland-bred to win a Breeders' Cup race. Safely Kept won the Sprint in 1990 at Belmont Park.

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