Always Dreaming avenges sire's defeat in the Run for the Roses
Bodemeister could not quite burn off his rivals - but his son did
Five years after Bodemeister set a blistering pace in the Kentucky Derby only to be caught by I'll Have Another in the closing stages and finish second, his first-crop son Always Dreaming adopted similar tactics in the race on Saturday, having raced prominently and taken up the running half a mile from home.
But whereas his sire could not quite last out, Always Dreaming scooted clear on a sloppy track at Churchill Downs to win as he liked.
The colt - trained by Todd Pletcher for a syndicate including MeB Racing, Brooklyn Boyz, Teresa Viola, Siena Farm and West Point Thoroughbreds - finished clear of Lookin At Lee (by Lookin At Lucky) in second, with Battle Of Midway (Smart Strike) in third.
Always Dreaming completes a run of five consecutive favourites landing the Run for the Roses. In fact, it was Bodemeister who was the last beaten favourite in the race.
Always Dreaming is also the second winner of the race in three years by a son of Empire Maker who finished second in the Kentucky Derby for Ahmed Zayat, after American Pharoah, a son of Pioneerof The Nile.
The first crop of Bodemeister has yielded three stakes winners. Besides the newly crowned Kentucky Derby king, they are Listed scorers Bode's Dream and O Dionysus.
Bodemeister, who won the Arkansas Derby by nine and a half lengths and was beaten again by I'll Have Another in the Preakness Stakes – this time by only a neck – stands at WinStar Farm in Kentucky at a fee of $25,000.
Always Dreaming was bred by Santa Rosa Partners out of the In Excess mare Above Perfection, who won the Grade 3 Las Flores Handicap over 6f and was second in the Grade 1 Prioress Stakes over the same distance. He is one of two Grade 1 winners produced by the dam, after Spinaway Stakes heroine Hot Dixie Chick.
Above Perfection is a half-sister to Listed-winning sprinter Made To Perfection out of Something Perfect, a half-sister to Listed winner Conky Johnston, the dam of two Listed scorers in Some Sensation and Sounds Fabulous.
Always Dreaming was a $350,000 purchase by Steve Young from the draft of Dromoland Farm at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale in 2015.
His year-younger half-sister by Medaglia D'Oro was knocked down to Good Luck Farm for $485,000 at the Keeneland November Foal Sale later that year, while the dam also has a yearling filly by Pioneerof The Nile.