Oscar Performance Shows Winning Ways in Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf
By Casey Laughter
The Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (GIT) has been a top race for European horses to dominate, with the last seven of nine winners making their last start in Europe. However, the Americans turned the tables back in their favor and got the Breeders’ Cup World Championships off to a riveting start with Oscar Performance running the second-fastest Juvenile Turf in the history of the race when he stopped the clock for the one-mile distance in 1:33 1/5 over a firm turf course.
Oscar Performance broke well with jockey Jose Ortiz, who guided the colt over to the three path by the time the field got to the first turn, where he sat comfortably off of Wellabled’s flank for more than a half-mile. Channel Maker sat just behind the top two in third.
The frontrunners led the field through splits of :22 1/5 for the first quarter, :45 4/5 for the half-mile and the three-quarters went in 1:09 3/5.
Lancaster Bomber came in second, 1 1/4 lengths behind Oscar Performance while favorite Good Samaritan coming in third by just a neck.
At odds of more than 6-1, Oscar Performance paid $15.20 to win.
Jockey Jose Ortiz, who was very emotional about his father missing his first Breeders’ Cup win, did say he was happy to share the experience with his brother, Irad. When asked about his mount, Ortiz smiled.
“He gave me a good feeling, “ Ortiz said. “He kept going without me asking for anything.”
Trainer Bryan Lynch also gained his first Breeders’ Cup win with Oscar Performance.
“He [Oscar Performance] has always been a step or two above the other two-year-olds,” Lynch said of the Speightstown. “Jose gave him a very smart ride.”
Owner John Amerman of Amerman Racing said now he is looking to potentially send the colt to Royal Ascot for a run next June.