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American Pharoah Romps in BC Classic  

     It was American Pharoah`s race to lose.

Ears pricked, long stride gobbling up ground, the first Triple Crown winner to ever run in the Breeders` Cup went soaring to an easy lead in the first quarter of the Oct. 31 Breeders` Cup Classic (gr. I) and never faltered.

"He gave everyone what they came to see today," said the colt`s emotional Hall of Fame trainer, Bob Baffert. "I`ve never seen anything like him; I`ve never trained anything like him. I`m just glad Pharoah goes out the champ he is."

This was the horse who captured America`s heart with brilliant victories in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), Preakness Stakes (gr. I), and Belmont Stakes Presented by DraftKings (gr. I), and the same bay colt who started down that road with definitive wins in the Oaklawn Park prep series and came back from breaking the 37-year Triple Crown drought to win the William Hill Haskell Invitational (gr. I).

ANGST: American Pharoah Takes Haskell With Ease

Breaking smoothly from post 4 under regular rider Victor Espinoza and sailing up to the front with a few fluid strides, American Pharoah set fractions of :23.99, :47.40, and 1:11.21 through six furlongs, then drew away to a 6 1/2-length win—tying with Volponi (2002) for largest Classic margin of victory.

"I knew this was going to be his last race, and I let him run," Espinoza said. "On the backside, the path I was in was a little deep, so I decided to move out and he accelerated a little. Turning for home, I knew I was gone."

With his Classic triumph, Zayat Stables` homebred son of Pioneerof the Nile brought down the curtain on a legendary career, speeding to 1 1/4 miles in 2:00.07, the fastest race run at the distance in Keeneland history on any surface. It was the 12th overall Breeders` Cup win for Baffert, who took his second consecutive edition of the Classic after winning the 2014 running with Bayern, the third Breeders` Cup win for Espinoza, and the first for the Zayat family.

"What can I say? What a horse! He is the most brilliant horse I have ever seen," owner Ahmed Zayat said. "We so appreciate (having) him, and we owe American Pharoah everything. He is a once-in-a-lifetime horse.``


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