American-based Oscar Performance set the early pace in the Turf and cruised along throughout the first two bends on an open lead. Beach Patrol tracked in second while off the rail, with Highland Reel, last year’s winner in wire-to-wire fashion tracking in third under Ryan Moore.
The early splits were honest. The opening-quarter went in :23.69, the half-mile in :48.33, and six furlongs in 1:12.86. Tracking the leaders were Hunt, and Talismanic, with Mickael Barzalona aboard.
As the field made its way out of the third and final bend, Beach Patrol challenged Oscar Performance and quickly established the lead, but coming after him was Talismanic, with Highland Reel still digging in. The mile went in 1:38.00.
In the lane, Talismanic was too much, edging clear to win by a half-length. Beach Patrol held by a neck over Highland Reel.
“I can’t believe it,” Barzalona said. “I am thrilled to have won my first Breeders’ Cup race. I expected the horse to run well, but I’m not sure I thought I would win. Mr. [Andre] Fabre is a great trainer.”
Barzalona’s previous top wins include riding Pour Moi to a win in the 2011 Epsom Derby, and guiding Monterosso to victory in the 2012 Dubai World Cup Sponsored by Emirates Airline.—Evan Hammonds