Wise Dan easily handled the field at the 2012 Shadwell Turf Mile Stakes and it needs to lead to him running in the upcoming Breeders Cup.
The five-year-old gelding was dominant. He ran out to a 2.5-length margin of victory and it was clear when he started making his move on the verge of the stretch, to overtake pace setters Silver Max and Dominus, that he would not be beat.
This horse, who did not race as a juvenile, has a tremendous finishing kick and a killer instinct. While Saturday's dominance came on turf, this horse proved he deserves a shot at the Breeders Cup.
The place is there for this Wise Dan; he has now won two straight "win and you're in" races leading up to the Breeders Cup. Yet there was trainer Charles Lopresti in the winner's circle, professing his doubts about this horse's ability to take to Santa Anita's main track, the home of the Breeders Cup.
Brisnet passed along that news, but they also added that "Wise Dan is likely to take up that engagement at Santa Anita."
Now, it is certainly understandable why Lopresti would have these concerns, but it would not be understandable if he used those concerns to keep that horse out of the race. He has earned his shot, and it is clear he belongs.
Wise Dan, as Brisnet points out, has nine career stakes victories, over $2.4 million in earnings, a career record of 19-12-1-0 and is getting stronger with every race.
Part of Lopresti's hesitance likely comes from Wise Dan's performance on dirt on June 16 of this year at Churchill Downs for the Grade 1 Stephen Foster Handicap.
He only lost by a head in that race, but it was his most uninspired trip of the year.
However, it is time to cast fears and hesitancy aside. This horse has shown remarkable tenacity, a superb finishing kick and the will to win. It is time to roll the dice and let Wise Dan run for glory at the Breeders Cup.