Horse Racing

Champion Elite Power returns with Saudi Cup Undercard

elite power | horse photo


Recent champion sprinter elite power (make for curly) will kick off its 5-year-old campaign in the $1.5 million G3 Riyadh Dirt Sprint in the framework of the Saudi Cup on February 25.

The Juddmonte colorway capped a five-race winning streak with a strong, behind-the-scenes win during the GI Breeders’ Cup Sprint in Keeneland this past November 5. Elite Power, a $900,000 September Keeneland graduate, posted five workouts for Hall of Famer Bill Mott since the start of the new year at Payson Park, including a five-mile breeze at 1: 02.80 (8/4) on 2/2.

“He tweaked his program quite a bit right after the Breeders’ Cup in which we were going to the Saudi Cup Sprint,” said Juddmonte USA General Manager Garrett O’Rourke.

“Bill [Mott] gave him a little break and now he’s back to full work and everything is – wood touches – on target. The horse is doing well and looking good. He seems to be in great shape.”

Looking further ahead into this season, O’Rourke added, “I want to make that clear with [Juddmonte] first, but for now, the plan is for him to come back [to the U.S. afterwards] and find an end-of-season campaign. Give him a little break, aim for some summer races and move on to the Breeders’ Cup.”

Juddmonte, founded by the late Saudi Prince Khalid bin Abdullah in 1980, was represented in all three previous runs of the card’s main event with MGSW & MGISP tacitus (faucet) (Thursday, 2020; and Saturday, 2021) and promoted the winner of the GI Kentucky Derby mandalun (Into Mischief) (ninth, 2022).

“It is building into a great event and fits into the international racing schedule,” said O’Rourke. “By the time you finish the Breeders’ Cup, you’re thinking about the Saudi Cup. It’s great to be able to share our best horses and be able to go head-to-head with the world’s elite horses at international events like this. The Saudi Cup is now firmly established as an event type.

Purebred Juddmonte laurel river (Into Mischief), meanwhile, scratched by regulatory vets the day before last year’s GI Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, has been given the green light to resume training with Hall of Famer Bob Baffert. The 5-year-old was last seen scoring career highs in Del Mar’s GII Pat O’Brien S. last summer.

“We gave him 60 days of doing nothing and another 60 days to bring him back slowly and he is now here on the farm and galloping every day,” O’Rourke said. “We checked him already, now we have him checked again and everything is perfectly fine. He’ll be back with Bob Baffert next week. We always do the right thing with our horses and I am very confident that the horse is 100% complete. He is a very capable and talented horse.

He concludes: “The value of thorough monitoring of horses participating in major events has helped strengthen public confidence that we are doing all the right things. We will always stand by and respect the decisions made by the experts.”

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This story was posted in Top News and tagged Invoice Mott, Breeding house cup sprint, Champion sprinter, make for curly, elite power, Juddmonte, Keeneland, Payson Park, Riyadh Dirt Sprint, Arab Cup.


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