Odds-on favorite Cazadero reaffirmed his dazzling 8 ¾-length debut win with another impressive performance at Churchill Downs in Saturday’s 119th running of the $100,000 Bashford Manor presented by TwinSpires.com (Grade III), beating County Final by 4 ¾ lengths while running six furlongs in 1:09.73.
Sent to post as the 2-5 favorite in a field of seven 2-year-olds, Stonestreet Stables’ homebred Cazadero tracked pacesetter County Final, who blitzed his way to the front through swift fractions of a :21.24 and :45.12. Off the turn, jockey Ricardo Santana Jr. shook the reins on Cazadero, who quickly drew even with the leader at the three-sixteenths pole and asserted himself in deep stretch for the comfortable victory.
“He is an incredibly nice horse,” Santana said. “We sat in a really good spot today and was very comfortable. He kept finding his stride throughout the stretch.”
It was the record sixth Bashord Manor win for Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen, who previously won the juvenile event with Lunarpal (2004), Kodiak Kowboy (2007), Kantharos (2010), Cinco Charlie (2014) and Sir Truebadour (2018).
“He’s been a very fast horse in his training and handled everything very well today,” Asmussen said.
Cazadero’s triumph was worth $60,760 and increased his bankroll to $106,160 with a perfect record in two starts. His debut win came May 29 at Churchill Downs in a five-furlong maiden special weight.
Cazadero is a 2-year-old son of 2007 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense out of the Forest Wildcat mare Wild Gams. He was bred in Kentucky by his owner Barbara Banke of Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC.
“He was a later foal (born May 8, 2018) but we knew he was wickedly fast,” Banke said. “He grew up on our farm and has showed that speed in his two starts.”
Cazadero returned $2.80, $2.40 and $2.10. County Final, under James Graham at 16-1, paid $6.80 and $4.80 and finished 1 ¾ lengths in front of Herd Immunity who paid $4.60 to show under Brian Hernandez Jr. at 12-1.
Hulen, Hyperfocus, Gatsby and Crown and Coke completed the order of finish.
First run in 1902, the Bashford Manor is named for the former Louisville Thoroughbred breeding and racing farm that dominated the American racing scene in the early 1900s. George J. Long, a wealthy foundry owner, purchased Bashford Manor Farm in 1887 and developed his Thoroughbred operation that provided him two Derby wins as an owner, 1892 (Azra) and 1906 (Sir Huon), and three as a breeder, 1892 (Azra), 1899 (Manuel) and 1906 (Sir Huon). In addition, Bashford Manor also won the Kentucky Oaks in 1894 (Selika) and 1915 (Kathleen). The original Wilder family owned Bashford Manor. The Wilders were direct descendants of Lord Baltimore, whose English home was also called Bashford Manor. Long died in 1930 and the farm was eventually sold in 1973 to make way for the development of a mall complex, fittingly named Bashford Manor, that formally closed in 2003.
BASHFORD MANOR QUOTES
Ricardo Santana Jr., jockey of CAZADERO (winner): “He is an incredibly nice horse. We sat in a really good spot today and was very comfortable. He kept finding his stride throughout the stretch.”
Steve Asmussen, trainer of CAZADERO (winner): “He’s been a very fast horse in his training and handled everything very well today.”
Barbara Banke, owner of CAZADERO (winner): “He was a later foal but we knew he was wickedly fast. He grew up on our farm and has showed that speed in his two starts.”