1996 Jockey Club Gold Cup + Post Race
Cigar made a noble but losing farewell to racing in New York yesterday when he was beaten by a head by Skip Away in the $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup. It was only the second time in his last 19 races that the 6-year-old super horse had been outrun, but it also was the second time in his last three starts. So, age, luck and fast horses may be catching up to him. He gave it a special poignancy by staging a valiant rally through the homestretch, but missed by the length of Skip Away's head. And while it took two horses to spring the trap that ended Cigar's 16-race winning streak at Del Mar in August, this time it took just one very swift, very tough 3-year-old. As they streaked to the finish, Skip Away was fighting on the inside to keep his lead and Cigar was charging on the outside to snatch it. And flying at their heels came two other 3-year-old stars, Louis Quatorze, two lengths behind Cigar, and Editor's Note, one length behind Louis Quatorze. ''I'd just be whining if I made excuses,'' said Bill Mott, who trains Cigar for Allen Paulson of California. ''I don't feel uncomfortable about anything that's happened. I thought he ran a pretty darned good race. He had a little more left to do at the half-mile pole than he normally has to, but that doesn't mean we're making excuses.'' Jerry Bailey, who rode Cigar through his record-tying winning streak, put it bluntly: ''I ran second. I ran into a horse who ran an exceptional race. I have to tip my hat to the winner. I knew it ...
Tags: belmont, park, horse, racing, skip, away, cigar, louis, quatorze, shane, sellers, sonny, hine, jerry, bailey, tom, durkin, editors, note
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