With a determined stretch drive in the final furlong, Stud Entermamente Rio’s Voador Magee (BRZ) passed Daffy Girl (BRZ) to spring a 21-1 upset, winning Sunday’s 1 ½-mile Grande Premio Brasil (G1) by a half-length at Hipodromo da Gavea and earning an automatic starting position into this year’s $ 4 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1) through the international Breeders’ Cup Challenge.
The Breeders’ Cup Challenge is an international series of 81 stakes races whose winners receive free berths and fees paid into a corresponding race of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, which will be held, for the first time, at the Del Mar race track near San Diego, California, on November 3-4.
As a part of the benefits of the Challenge series, the Breeders’ Cup will pay the entry fees for the connections of Voador Magee to start in the 1 ½ mile Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf. Breeders’ Cup will also provide a $ 40,000 travel allowance for all starters based outside of North America to compete in the World Championships.
Trained by Luis Esteves and ridden by Angelo Macio de Souza, Voador Magee, a 3-year-old son of Roderic O’Connor (IRE) out of Hommage (BRZ) by Trempolino, stayed in mid-pack most of the way in the 17-horse field before gaining his best stride in the center of the turf course in deep stretch. Daffy Girl (4.8-1), a winner of 4 of 7 lifetime starts coming into the race, and recently second against males in the Group 1 Grande Premio Sao Paulo on May 7, stayed just off the pace but forged to the front along the rail following the turn for home under jockey Valdinei Gil. Daffy Girl could not hold off the fast coming Voador Magee, who was under steady right-handed urging from de Souza approaching the wire.
Emperor Roderic (BRZ) finished third, 1 ½-lengths behind the winner. He was followed in order by Departure Time (BRZ), Kilimanjaro (BRZ), Ceu De Brigadeiro (BRZ), Enologo (BRZ), Olympic Gameboy (BRZ), No Regrets (BRZ), King David (BRZ), Firsson (BRZ), Discreto Belo (BRZ), Deep End (BRZ), Olympic Google (BRZ), Huber (BRZ), Bage in Concert (BRZ) and Pau Rei De Birigui (BRZ).
Voador Magee, completed the 1 ½ miles in 2:26.10, registering his first win of the year. He came into Sunday’s race off a second-place finish by a nose to Emperor Roderic in the 1 ½ mile Grande Premio Cruzeiro do Sul (G1) at Gavea on April 9.
Ninth-place finisher and 3-1 favorite No Regrets (BRZ), the Brazilian Filly Triple Crown winner, was facing male rivals for the first time.
The 2017 Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series, now in its 11th year, is being held at many of the world’s premier racetracks in 13 countries: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, England, France, Japan, Germany, Ireland, Peru, South Africa and the United States.
The Grande Premio Brasil was the fourth Breeders’ Cup Challenge race to be run in South America this year. On May 1, Kiriaki (ARG) won the Gran Premio Criadores (G1) at Palermo and earned an automatic berth into the Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1); Ordak Dan (ARG) won the Gran Premio 25 de Mayo (G1) at San Isidro on May 25 in Buenos Aires to gain the year’s first free berth into the Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf, and Top Casablanca (CHI) won the Gran Premio Club Hipico Falabella (G1) on May 28 in Santiago, Chile, securing an automatic starting position into the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1).
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