TODAY (Friday) is Ladies’ Day at the Breeders’ Cup. I have no idea whether a slew of D-list beauties are going to be bussed in from nearby Hollywood, but it’s all about the girls on the track.
There are five Breeders’ Cup races today, all for fillies and mares. The best, and with a claim to be the race of the meeting, is the Ladies’ Classic — used to be the Distaff — where the mighty Zenyatta is odds-on to continue her unbeaten run.
But there’s classy opposition in the shape of the Godolphin filly Music Note, who has won three Group Ones on the east coast, the steel-hard five-year-old Ginger Punch, winner of the race last year, and Godolphin’s other runner, the Chilean-bred Cocoa Beach, who beat Ginger Punch last time out.
This is a Classic worthy of the name — it’s a bit naff to call it the Ladies’ Classic, but this is a really good race. The winner will need to be one tough chick.
But there are certain racing journalists here whose eyes will be on another tough chick. Chantal Sutherland has her first Breeders’ Cup ride today in the Juvenile Fillies’ on the Pro-Ride surface.
The 32-year-old, who didn’t have her first race-ride until she was 24 (she was too busy majoring in psychology at college) is the face of a cosmetics company, has had a four-page spread in Vogue and was one of People magazine’s 100 Most Beautiful recently.
Her riding helmet is covered in glitter, and her chaps are decorated with rhinestones. One British journalist — very happily married, I hasten to add — even got a photographer to tell her his own claim to racing fame (1990, Aintree, to give you a clue). She was suitably impressed.
Stay in touch with all the news from the Breeders’ Cup as it happens on Horseandhound.co.uk