Sippican Harbor came out of her upset victory in Saturday’s Grade 1 Spinaway Stakes “perfect” according to trainer Gary Contessa, but the filly won’t start again before the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies on Nov. 3 at Churchill Downs.
“Just train into the Breeders’ Cup,” Contessa said. “She ran twice in 20 days, that’s enough. I can’t see the perfect timing for another race, we’ll go in with a fresh horse.”
Sippican Harbor actually ran three times in six weeks at this meet. She came to Saratoga as a turf horse. She debuted on July 22 in a 1 1/16-mile turf race finishing fifth, beaten four lengths.
Contessa entered Sippican Harbor back on turf, but rain forced the Aug. 12 race to the dirt and she won that seven-furlong race by 17 lengths.
Sippican Harbor, a daughter of Orb, rallied from last to win the Spinaway by two lengths over Restless Rider. Sippican Harbor covered seven furlongs in 1:23.72 and earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 77.
Contessa said the effort in the Spinaway confirmed Sippican Harbor can compete with good horses on dirt.
“She’s the real deal because going in I wasn’t positive,” Contessa said. “You could take a really good boxer and he beats up a chump and he looks really good doing it, but when you throw him in with Mike Tyson he’s knocked out in the first round. We had to see this to believe it.”
Contessa said Sippican Harbor would ship to Belmont Park on Tuesday and train there for a while before shipping to Churchill Downs about three weeks out from the Breeders’ Cup.
This story originally appeared on DRF.com.
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