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Breeders' Cup 2021 Results: Replay Video, Highlights and Recap for Classic Race

Alex Ballentine@Ballentine_AlexFeatured ColumnistNovember 7, 2021

DEL MAR, CA - NOVEMBER 06:  Life Is Good ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr. takes the lead on his way to winning the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile on November 06, 2021, at the Breeder's Cup World Championships in Del Mar, CA. (Photo by Cynthia Lum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

The 2021 edition of the Breeders' Cup came to a close with Knicks Go taking the biggest prize of the weekend by winning in the 38th running of the Breeders' Cup Classic on Saturday.

In addition to writing his name in the history books of one of America's biggest races, the five-year-old also earned his team the lion's share of the biggest purse in American racing. The Classic boasted a purse of $6 million, which is more than all three Triple Crown races combined this year.

Knicks Go's team won $3.12 million from the showing.

As expected, the Pegasus World Cup and Whitney Stakes winner galloped off to the early lead out of the gate. His front-running style didn't leave much doubt that he would break early, but whether he could keep that pace over the 1 1/4-mile race was a question.

As it turns out, that answer was a resounding yes. Art Collector and Hot Rod Charlie pressed the pace early and Essential Quality came on strong at the end, but Knicks Go was simply too fast for any of the horses in the field to make up the time:

NBC Sports @NBCSports

KNICKS GO wins the $6 Million #BreedersCup Classic! 🏆 https://t.co/QQom8M8UkF

For Brad H. Cox, this is a new level of success at the Breeders' Cup. He has seven wins in the Kentucky Derby, but this is his first time training a Classic winner. Cox was also the trainer of third-place finisher Essential Quality.

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Medina Spirit, the Bob Baffert trainee who won the Derby, finished second.

Though the Triple Crown races feature three-year-olds only, this race featured eight horses of different ages at the Del Mar racetrack in California.

Breeders' Cup @BreedersCup

REPLAY: KNICKS GO wins the $6 Million @LonginesEq #BreedersCup Classic! Congrats to all connections! #BC21 #KeeGrad J: Joel Rosario T: Brad H. Cox O: Korea Racing Authority B: Angie Moore https://t.co/gjQGKcFKkM

The Classic also figures to weigh heavily in the race for the Eclipse Horse of the Year Award. Last year, Authentic rode a Classic win to the award, and this year, the race is close again, so Knicks Go greatly improved his case to take home the award.

This year's race truly brought a talented pack, including a Derby winner in Medina Spirit, Belmont and Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner in Essential Quality and Horse of the Year front-runner in Knicks Go.

Knicks Go is the perfect example of a late bloomer. As a two-year-old and three-year-old, he didn't really stand out. Now, he's a world champion runner.

The results of the Classic are as follows:

1. Knicks Go

2. Medina Spirit

3. Essential Quality

4. Hot Rod Charlie

5. Stiletto Boy

6. Art Collector

7. Tripoli

8. Max Player

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