Churchill Downs Press Release: Following an emphatic 8 ¾-length victory in Saturday’s $150,000 Iroquois Presented by TwinSpires.com (Grade III) at Churchill Downs (click here for recap and race replay), Not This Time is scheduled to go straight to the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI) at Santa Anita on Nov. 5, according to trainer Dale Romans.
The son of Giant’s Causeway punched his ticket for a spot in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile with his win in the Iroquois, which is a part of the Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In Juvenile Division” Challenge.
“We’ll probably just go straight there,” Romans said. “He looked fine to me (Sunday) morning.”
Romans could not help but sing praises of the half-brother to dual Grade I winner Liam’s Map before he made his first start, where he ran fifth beaten 10 lengths behind eventual Saratoga graded stakes winner Bitumen. Not This Time turned things around in his following start rolling to a maiden victory in dominant fashion by 10 lengths over Society Beau, who would go on to find his first career win in Saturday’s sixth race.
“We beat him by 10 lengths and then he comes back and wins against straight maidens,” Romans said. “(Trainer) Neil (Howard) has a good horse, but mine is really something special.”
Not This Time’s 8 ¾-length Iroquois victory did not come easy as he broke a step slow coming out of the starting gate and sat well off of a slow pace set by pacesetter Blame Will, who led in opening fractions of :24.30, :49.57 and 1:14.52.
“I think that the slow start was just the victim of being the last horse loaded in the starting gate,” Romans said. “I also think the track might have been a little slow yesterday. He ran about two seconds faster than the fillies. It’s hard to compare apples to apples.”
Romans also won the Locust Grove (GIII) with Engaginglee on Saturday afternoon, who he has not made any definite plans for.
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