Pacific Classic (Grade 1) (BC)- $1,000.000 Purse
DMR- For Three Year Olds and Upward
One Mile and One Quarter on the Dirt
September 2, 2023
Capping off an exciting Saturday of racing would be the running of the Grade 1 Pacific Classic, which interestingly featured eight of its ten runners coming out of the Whitney at SAR, especially when they could have stayed there for the JC Gold Cup. An automatic spot in the BC Classic was at stake and it is now official that the reigning champion of that race will be able to defend his title. Individuation continues to shine as a four year old and can now add this race to his long list of accomplishments, which also include winning the Travers, PA Derby, and then some. He is trained by Mb Stables, who is now quickly up to 1,002 graded stake wins with this victory. Five of them have come in the Pacific Classic, with the other wins being The Windy City (2012), High Pride (2016), Apples To Oranges (2019) and Graveyard (2021). With regular rider L Saez at SAR, F Prat took advantage of the opportunity to ride Individuation and won the race for the first time. Congratulations to them! The time of the race was 2:00.29, the fastest running of the race since 2012. Let’s take a look at it!
(1/2 Mile- :47.60)- The field makes the run down the frontstretch the first time with Arindel’s Ey Mon being the quickest out of the gate. He will hold an uncontested lead of a length as they reach the opening turn. Stalking right behind him is out eventual race winner, Individuation, for Mb Stables. He has company to his outside in the form of Spankys Barn’s Puppet Master, and that one is a head in front for second at this point. Home Spirit seemed as though he would run with these two, but the Night Rider Stables entry would settle for fourth. In the middle of the pack, we would have a four wide group, consisting of, from inside to outside, The Martian (Mo Mentum Farm), More Twist (Mb Stables), G O O B A (Fractious), and South China Sea (Fractious). It’s then a gap of about three to Hard To Forgive (D J C Racing Stables), and trailing is Eight West Party (TwinTowersRacing).
(3/4 Mile- 1:11.74)- There is very little change in how the race runs early on in the backstretch. Ey Mon is still the race leader, but he could hear the presence of Individuation right behind him and potentially ready to strike. Puppet Master was still running with Individuation for the second position while Home Spirit was tucked in right behind them. Further back, the only noteworthy change is that, potentially, South China Sea is showing signs of dropping back from those he was running with. Otherwise, let’s see if business picks up as we move closer to the finish.
(Top of Stretch, 1.5F To Go)- As soon as we get to the turn, F Prat and Individuation decide that it’s time to make the move on Ey Mon. After stalking him over the first half of the race, Individuation moves to his outside, and gradually reels him in. At the top of the stretch, it was now Individuation in front by half a length, but Ey Mon was doing a pretty good job of hanging in there, so don’t write him off from getting a good finish. It was now about two lengths to third place Puppet Master, who was not able to keep up. Meanwhile, More Twist was starting to show interest and moved up from the middle of the pack and was imminently about to take over the third place. Surely, this made Mb Stables happy as the biggest possible threat to Individuation would be his stablemate. Home Spirit was running steady, but at this point, more was needed. G O O B A and The Martian were lacking response to this point, and South China Sea was running with them better than earlier anticipated. Hard To Forgive, a known closer, was starting to show interest, but seemed to be beginning that way too late. Eight West Party, who was way out earlier, seemed poised to pick off a couple who would tire out, but not much more.
(Finish- 2:00.29)- Rather quickly in the stretch, Individuation pulled ahead by a length, and seemed to have this race in the bag. Ey Mon was running decently, but no longer was a threat to win and More Twist was not making up ground quickly enough. No one else was closing, so now we could sit back and watch one of the best active horses in the game right now cruise to the wire and win the race by a convincing length and a half. No reason to think that he can’t go back to back in the BC Classic, so now we wonder if that will be his next start, or if he’ll get another race between then. (I’d guess that he goes straight to the BC). More Twist takes second, completing the 1-2 finish for Mb, with Ey Mon takes the third spot. A steady run for Home Spirit nets him fourth, ahead of Hard to Forgive, who ran well late, but started doing so way too late. Rounding it out, it’s Puppet Master, Eight West Party, South China Sea, The Martian, and G O O B A.
About The Winner- Individuation, trained by Mb Stables and ridden to victory by F Prat, is a four year old gelding by Jung and is out of Dawning Earl Grey. He was bred by Patterson Stables as a first quarter two year old in Florida and was acquired by Mb Stables for $300.000 in an August 2021 private sale. Congratulations to the connections! The win is his tenth in 19 starts and his seventh stake win, all of which are graded. He’s now won five Grade 1’s, and his career earnings improve to $7,665.460.
Time: :473 1:113 1:36 2:001
$2 Mutuel Prices:
$1 Exacta: 3 – 2 Paid 63.20
$1 Trifecta: 3 – 2 – 6 Paid 267.80
Categories: Grade I, STAKES ARTICLES