April 12, 2024

Inspiral mows down Warm Heart in BC Filly and Mare Turf

Inspiral wins The PNC Bank Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1) at Santa Anita (Photo by Horsephotos.com)

Inspiral passed her first test beyond a mile with flying colors on Saturday in the $1.84 million Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1) at Santa Anita, displaying a strong turn of foot under Frankie Dettori to edge fellow European raider Warm Heart by a neck over 1 1/4 miles.

Legendary trainer John Gosden had no qualms about stretching Inspiral out from her preferred mile distance, at least over a Santa Anita turf course he knew well from his days based in Southern California in the early 1980s. Despite her lack of experience over the distance, the four-time Group 1 winner was made the 5-2 favorite by bettors.

Saving ground through the first half of the race while five to six lengths off of a :22.95, :46.90, and 1:12.45 pace set by 2022 Filly and Mare Turf runner-up In Italian, Inspiral was angled out by Dettori at the top of the stretch and kicked on strongly to win over Warm Heart.

The latter, a multiple Group 1-winning three-year-old for Coolmore this year, had sat in behind the speed much of the way, found her way to the front from in between rivals, but couldn’t withstand the winner.

“An amazing performance from an outstanding filly,” said Gosden, whose previous Breeders’ Cup wins included the inaugural Mile (G1) with Royal Heroine in 1984 across town at the defunct Hollywood Park. “Frankie said he was happy with her throughout the race having a good pitch on the inside rail. She traveled beautifully throughout and showed an electric turn of foot.”

A homebred racing for Cheveley Park Stud, Inspiral covered the course in 1:59.06 on firm ground and returned $7 to win. Warm Heart had a length on reigning Canadian Horse of the Year Moira, who edged Japanese entrant Win Marilyn for third by a nose.

In Italian, Lumiere Rock, With the Moonlight, Lindy, State Occasion, Didia, Fev Rover, and McKulick completed the order of finish.

Inspiral has now won nine of 13 career starts and more than $3.6 million. A three-time stakes winner at two, including the Fillies’ Mile (G1) and May Hill (G2), she added the Prix Jacques le Marois (G1) against older males and the Coronation (G1) last season as a three-year-old.

After missing by a neck in the Queen Anne (G1) at Royal Ascot to kick off her 2023 campaign, Inspiral was not persevered with when trailing a field of five in the Sussex (G1), contested in bottomless ground at Goodwood. Gosden brought her back 11 days later to repeat in the Jacques le Marois at Deauville, and she followed up with an easy score in the Sun Chariot (G1) at Newmarket last month.

A four-year-old daughter of Frankel, Inspiral was produced by the English classic-placed Starscope, by Selkirk.