RACING: Breeders' Cup win for Gloucestershire owners Willie Carson and Chris Wright
CHRISELLIAM last night won the million dollar Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Santa Anita in California for Gloucestershire owners Willie Carson and Chris Wright.
A surprise 28-1 winner of the Fillies' Mile at Newmarket, Chriselliam showed that Group One success to be no fluke, rocketing clear in the closing stages under Wiltshire jockey Richard Hughes.
The victory helped Carson, from Barnsley, near Cirencester, to erase the painful memories of losing a Breeders’ Cup race in 1990 when he was a top jockey aboard ace sprinter Dayjur.
The hot favourite jumped a shadow 40 yards from the line and just lost out in a photo finish.
Chriselliam was purchased at the Newmarket sales last year when Chris Wright, in whose colours she runs, was having lunch with Carson and persuaded him to buy her.
Chris Wright is a music mogul, who co-founded Chrysalis and has guided the careers of globally-successful bands like Ten Years After, Jethro Tull, Blondie, Ultravox and Spandau Ballet, as well as owning Queens Park Rangers and London Wasps at one time.
Wright lives at Stratford Place Stud, Coln Rogers just outside Cirencester and his autobiography ‘One Way Or Another’ has just been published.
It was a first Breeders' Cup win at the first attempt for the filly’s trainer Charlie Hills, whose father Barry never won at the meeting.
Chriselliam is now favourite for the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket next year.
An overjoyed Carson said: "I wasn't thinking of Dayjur when I saw Hughesie turning for home with a ton of filly under him. We've always known this filly was good and I did gamble her once, when she ran poorly in France. I was banging my head against the plane window on the way back that night.
"It's bloody marvellous, what else can you say? We were drawn in the middle of the pack and Hughesie had to overcome that. My early thoughts were 'I do hope he gets a clean run' but in the end it worked out perfectly.
"This is a very special filly and everyone who has ridden her has kept saying how special she is.
"To own a Breeders' Cup winner is much better than riding one. When you are standing up in those boxes, it's a nervous time. I understand now what owners go through."
Connections were presented with the winning trophy by Hollywood actress Bo Derek.
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