Stopshoppingdebbie could be one stop away from running in a Breeders’ Cup race at Santa Anita in Southern California this fall.
Sunday, the phenomenal filly won for the ninth time in nine races, giving the 4-year-old the longest streak for a currently undefeated horse in North America.
With her perfect record, Stopshoppingdebbie scared most entries away from the $65,000 Emerald Downs Distaff on Sunday. She faced only four other horses, two of them stablemates also owned by Jerre Paxton’s Northwest Farms and trained by Tom Wenzel.
One of them, Goin to the Window, made a spirited try at marring Stopshoppingdebbie’s record but could not get around the winner. Stopshoppingdebbie finished three quarters of a length ahead in a time of 1 minute, 47.45 seconds.
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The heavy favorite, ridden by Rocco Bowen, paid $2.40, $2.10 and $2.10. Goin to the Window paid $3 and $2.40, and Blueberry Smoothie, another Paxton-Wenzel horse, was third and paid $2.40.
The 9-for-9 performance is a track record and keeps Stopshoppingdebbie on target for a trip south and perhaps an appearance in a race at the Breeders’ Cup, two days of Thoroughbred racing that attracts the best with $26 million in purse money spread over 13 races.
Wenzel said there were two graded stakes races at the end of September at Santa Anita, a Grade I, which he said would be “biting off a lot” for the filly, and a Grade III, same as the Longacres Mile.
If Stopshoppingdebbie did well in one of those races, her connections would choose between the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint on Nov. 1 or the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff on Oct. 31.
Wenzel said he always considered the Distaff, at 11/8 miles, to be the best fit for Stopshoppingdebbie. The Emerald Downs race Sunday went at the same distance.
Paxton, the breeder as well as owner, said they would map things out from here, noting that the Breeders’ Cup has been the aim from the start of the year.
Stopshoppingdebbie now has $247,023 in lifetime earnings, dating back to August 2012 when she won her first race at Emerald.