Afleet Again the Marathon ace
Big outsider Afleet Again (41/1) ground out a dour victory in the Breeders' Cup Marathon at Churchill Downs.
European raiders Meeznah, Brigantin and Harrison's Cave were all out of the frame in a real test of stamina on the dirt in Kentucky.
The former was beaten way out with Tom Queally hard at work as David Lanigan's filly fell back through the field. The dirt surface had been a concern for Meeznah, who travelled well enough early but lost her position at halfway, and was soon backtracking and eased.
Meanwhile the favourite A.U. Miner was pulled up at the top of the home stretch after bidding to start his run.
Up front, long-time leader Pleasant Prince gave way as Cease kicked for home rounding the final turn, but down the stretch it was the grey Afleet Again who challenged strongest of all on the outside of runners.
Running on strongly, the Robert Reid-trained four-year-old eventually won with something in hand from Birdrun in the hands of Cornelio Velasquez. Giant Oak took third spot.
Brigantin (Andre Fabre) and Aidan O'Brien's Harrison's Cave never got in a blow.