It’s been 14 years since owner Mike McCarty ran a horse in the Breeders’ Cup. On that sunny afternoon at Santa Anita Park, McCarty’s Storm Treasure unleashed a devastating kick that carried him from last to third in the inaugural Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint.
Now the longtime client of trainer Steve Asmussen will get to see his silks paraded once again on racing’s biggest stage in a different turf sprint, the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1T), with the improving Private Creed .
Private Creed backed up his breakout score in the Global Tote Juvenile Sprint Stakes at Kentucky Downs with another authoritative victory in the Oct. 9 $244,688 Indian Summer Stakes presented by Keeneland Select, punching his ticket to the Breeders’ Cup on Nov. 4 at Keeneland.
Asmussen admitted he was hesitant about whether the son of Jimmy Creed would be as effective over the 5 1/2 furlongs after taking the 6 1/2-furlong Juvenile Sprint in the final 50 yards only a month earlier.
“(It) was a concern backing up in distance. He’s a big horse,” Asmussen said. “I did consult with Joel (Rosario) about which way to go with him as far as backing up to the 5 1/2 or going the two turns here, and just thought with where he’s at with his physical development keeping him at one turn. That was obviously the correct (decision).”
With the scratch of the speedy filly Love Reigns , favoritism fell to trainer Wesley Ward’s other entry, Andrew Farm and For the People Racing Stable’s No Nay Hudson . The No Nay Never colt bested Private Creed for runner-up honors in the Skidmore Stakes at Saratoga Race Course Aug. 19 in their only prior meeting. This time, sporting French cup blinkers, Private Creed flew by No Nay Hudson in deep stretch to win by three-quarters of a length in a stakes-record 1:02.30.
It was the fourth of five stakes records to fall on Keeneland’s turf course through the fall meet’s opening weekend. Two races later, Andthewinneris lowered the mark traveling 1 1/16 miles in the Castle & Key Bourbon Stakes (G2T).
“The difference he made up on No Nay Hudson with the addition of blinkers is an indication he’s going the right way,” Asmussen said. The colt was outfitted with blinkers for the first time at Kentucky Downs following his Skidmore third.
“(The blinkers) made the difference between getting beat and winning,” Asmussen added.
Private Creed tracked in mid-pack under Rosario as longshot Ghent pressed opening fractions of :21.68 and :44.39. Wheeling four-wide into the final turn, Rosario moved the bay into the clear and he stormed to the wire.
“The whole time I was just the passenger,” Rosario said. “He did the job.”
BBN Racing’s Mo Stash ran on late to get second over No Nay Hudson.
Private Creed paid $7.28 to win.
Bred in Kentucky by Sierra Farm, McCarthy acquired Private Creed for $155,000 this spring at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Two-Year-Olds-in-Training Sale from the Mason Springs consignment. The colt is the first foal out of the stakes-winning Sky Mesa mare South Andros, the dam of a yearling colt by Vino Rosso and a weanling colt by Complexity .
“What a wonderful horse, and to have another chance in the Breeders’ Cup for Mike McCarty several years later… it’s great to get Mike back here for the Breeders’ Cup,” Asmussen said.