Matador got the head bob to break his maiden over Cool Faith in the $251,200 Cup and Saucer S. Sunday at Woodbine to give Malibu Moon his third stakes winner of the Oct. 19-20 weekend.
Matador and Cool Faith hooked up at the outset of the Cup and Saucer turning the mile and one-sixteenth contest, run over a ‘yielding’ turf course, into what was essentially a match race.
The pair hooked up after the gate opened, trading turns on the lead through fractions of 48.16 and 1:13.28.
With Matador on the outside, the duo raced as one for the length of the stretch. They hit the wire together, but the photo showed Matador had prevailed by a nose in 1:47.89.
Said Kathryn Sullivan, assistant to trainer Mark Casse, “We’ve had great hopes for this horse and he really came through today. I mean, he just did not give up at all. I wasn’t really sure (who had won). She (Cool Faith) just kept coming back on. But it was a great race.”
The Cup and Saucer, worth $150,000 to the winner, was the third lifetime start for Matador, who has made all three of his starts in stakes. He has now banked $180,472.
Matador, a $150,000 Keeneland yearling purchase by Casse for owner John Oxley, was bred by Windhaven Farms. He is the second foal out of I'm Breathtaking, a half-sister to Grade 2 Prioress S. winner Sapphire n'Silk and Grade 3 Affirmed S. winner Golden Itiz.
In addition to Matador's win, Malibu Moon had a pair of stakes winners Saturday night at Charles Town Races. Matador is Malibu Moon's 12th stakes winner of the year and increased his 2013 progeny earnings to $9 million, fourth on the General Sire list, and 2nd on the North American sire list.