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Ever Rider books spot in Breeders' Cup Marathon

Report: Argentina, Friday

Palermo: Clasico General Belgrano (Group 2) 1m4½f, dirt, 3yo+

SOUTH AMERICA added a second Breeders' Cup contender after 25-1 outsider Ever Rider (Juan Bianchi/Eduardo Ortega Pavon) punched his ticket on dirt in the $500,000 Breeders’ Cup Marathon with a wire-to-wire score in Buenos Aires.

The Belgrano won last year by the nine-year-old Calidoscopio, who then captured the Marathon at Santa Anita and gave Argentina its first-ever Breeder’s Cup victory, is the second and final Breeders’ Cup ‘Win and You’re In’ race contested in the country this year following the Grade 1 Gran Premio 25 de Mayo captured by Ordak Dan on May 25 at San Isidro.

A jump to Group 1 competition proved no problem for the blossoming Ever Rider, a four-year-old Argentine-bred grandson of Candy Stripes, who capped a productive four-year-old campaign after earlier scores this year at 2,300 and 2,400 metres.

Allowed to dictate the pace on an unchallenged lead, Ever Rider kept finding more and grinded out a workmanlike victory while resisting a late surge from 20-1 outsider Sunny Rex, who finished two lengths in front of third-placed Es Corino.

Following the victory, John Fulton, South American representative for the Breeders' Cup, said: "He's a very nice horse who will be very competitive in a race with the kind of pace they run in the Marathon.

"Juan Carlos Bianchi is a top trainer and, with jockey and owner, they make a good team. I am thrilled that they are going."

Giacom, a son of 2005 Kentucky Derby winner Giacomo, took sixth, while Dream Storm, second to Calidoscopio in last year’s Belgrano,  ran eighth returning off a six-month layoff.

Heavy favourite Soy Carambolo, second to Ordak Dan in the Gran Premio 25 de Mayo checked-in tenth in the 15-horse field.

The Stud Parque Patricios colour-bearer clocked a time of 2m 36.70s.

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