Edging out the formerly undefeated Zenyatta, Blame with Garrett Gomez aboard won the $5 million Grade I Breeders' Cup Classic today at historic Churchill Downs race track in Louisville, Kentucky.
Zenyatta dropped back to her normal spot at the back of the pack. She fired nearing the far turn, but came up a nose short in a thrilling photo finish before a roaring crowd of over 72,000 under the famed Twin Spires.
Breeders' Cup CEO Greg Avioli expressed his admiration for the now-vanquished Super Filly.
"While her story did not have a perfect ending, our entire sport was truly blessed by Zenyatta's amazing career," he said
Some had questioned the decision to not bring the filly and reigning Breeders' Cup Classic champion to Louisville sooner, and there's been speculation that leaving the synthetic surfaces of California to Churchill's hard dirt might have impeded her progress.
In the post-race press conference, Zenyatta's jockey Mike Smith broke down in tears, taking the blame for her only loss.
Blame paid $12.40, $4.40, and $3.80. Zenyatta returned $3.60 and $2.80. Fly Down paid $8.60
Photo: Courtesy Breeders' Cup