Coolmore’s magnificent stalwart sire Choisir continues to break new ground for the Australian thoroughbred siring high class gelding Obviously (8g Choisir x Leala, by Montjeu) to win the Grade I Breeders Cup Turf Sprint at Santa Anita.
Making his fifth appearance at the Breeders Cup, Irish bred Obviously came up trumps in the $1 million feature. He had previously tried four times in the Breeders’ Cup Mile with his best finish coming when third behind the champion Wise Dan in 2012.
Winner of two of his three starts in Ireland for Peter Fahey before being sold to America, Obviously began his US career under the late Mike Mitchell before Phil D’Amato took charge after Mitchell’s death.
“This is tremendous,” D’Amato said.
“A (first Breeders’ Cup) win for me and for my old boss Mike Mitchell, who had the horse before me. Mike campaigned him to a couple of (Grade I) victories and passed the baton on to me with this guy, and here I am with the Breeders’ Cup win. Pretty amazing.”
Sent straight to the front by Flavien Prat, Obviously withstood the challenge of the fast-finishing Om (4h Munnings x Rare Cat, by Tabasco Cat) to win the six furlong sprint by a nose.
“I got a good trip. He didn’t break well like he does every time but when I sent him and he got the lead he got comfortable,” Prat said.
“I asked him before the dirt (crossover) and he went on. He got a little tired but the wire was there.”
In earning his third Grade I win, Obviously advances his record to 13 wins and 10 placings from 29 starts for earnings of $2,321,751.
Bred in Ireland by Deidre Cogan, Obviously is out of the unraced Montjeu mare Leala from the family of triple Grade 1 winner Hawkster.
Leala has a yearling filly by promising young sire Excelebration.