November 28, 2021

Bourbonic gives Pletcher sixth win in Wood Memorial shocker

Bourbonic
Bourbonic upsets the Wood Memorial Stakes (Photo by Chelsea Durand/Coglianese Photos)

Trainer Todd Pletcher had won the Wood Memorial (G2) five times since 2010, but relied on two outsiders to win a sixth in Saturday’s $750,000 renewal at Aqueduct. Not only did Pletcher do it, but his duo of Bourbonic and Dynamic One ran one-two, resulting in a $453 exacta.

Bourbonic, easily one of the longest shots ever to win the historic 1 1/8-mile test, rallied from last in the final quarter-mile to catch Dynamic One by a head under Kendrick Carmouche. Both the 72-1 Bourbonic and the 15-1 Dynamic One were making their stakes debuts.

Bourbonic paid $146.50 to win after covering one lap of Aqueduct in 1:54.49 over a slow-playing track listed as fast. Dynamic One had 1 1/4 lengths on second choice Crowded Trade, with Gotham (G3) winner Weyburn third. The order of finish was rounded out by Brooklyn Strong, Prevalence, 2-1 favorite Risk Taking, Market Maven, and Candy Man Rocket.

Bourbonic is a homebred racing for Calumet Farm, which was winning the Wood Memorial for the first time in its storied history. Unplaced in his first two starts, Bourbonic broke his maiden for a $50,000 tag at Aqueduct on Dec. 6, and then captured a starter allowance over the same one-mile distance on Jan. 17. In his latest start, Bourbonic finished four lengths second to Market Maven in an entry-level allowance at Parx on Feb. 23 going one mile and 70 yards.

“We always felt this horse would handle added distance,” said Pletcher of Bourbonic. “He was able to get a perfect trip and sit back and make one late run. He was able to get there just in time. It was a big effort.

“To have any chance, I think the only way he could be successful was to stay back and make one late run. He doesn’t have any early speed.”

Bourbonic earned 100 Kentucky Derby (G1) qualifying points for the Wood Memorial victory and is safely in the May 1 Run for the Roses. Dynamic One, making his first start since breaking his maiden on March 7, earned 40 points and is likely in the Derby. Crowded Trade earned 20 points, boosting his total to 40, while Weyburn earned 10 points and boosted his total to 60. The latter, however, could step back from Derby consideration and point instead to the Belmont S. (G1) in June, while Crowded Trade’s ability over a distance is now in question, according to trainer Chad Brown.

“It looked for a moment like he had dead aim to maybe even win the race, but he just hung a little bit down the lane and ran a little bit evenly,” Brown said of Crowded Trade. “Watching his race, I think you’d have to be concerned how far he’ll run. He had dead aim and didn’t really close any ground from the eighth pole home.”

By Bernardini, the Kentucky-bred Bourbonic was produced by Delaware Oaks (G3) winner Dancing Afleet, a daughter of Afleet Alex.