Achard earns first G1 as In Love takes Keeneland Turf Mile

By Keeneland’s publicity department (photos by Keeneland/Coady Photography)

LEXINGTON, KY (Oct. 9, 2021) – Bonne Chance Farm and Stud R D I’s In Love (BRZ) surged to the front just past the eighth pole and went on to post a 1½-length victory in the 36th running of the $750,000 Keeneland Turf Mile (G1).

Also securing Grade 1 victories Saturday afternoon were Lucky Seven Stable’s Rattle N Roll in the $500,000 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity and Peter Brant’s Blowout (GB) in the $400,000 First Lady Presented by UK HealthCare. Earlier on the card, Bell’s the One took the $250,000 Thoroughbred Club of America (G2), and Golden Pal won the $200,000 Woodford (G2) Presented by TVG

Keeneland established records today for Fall Meet single-day all-sources and Pick 5 wagering, besting previous records set on Fall Stars Saturday in 2019 and 2020, respectively. All-sources handle totaled $20,935,640, surpassing the $18,392,756 set in 2019. Wagering on the $300,000-guaranteed All-Stakes Pick 5 totaled $1,255,080 to shatter the former Fall Meet record of $868,303 from 2020.

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In Love winning the Keeneland Turf Mile under Alex Achard. Keeneland/Coady Photography

In the Keeneland Turf Mile, In Love earned a fees-paid berth into the FanDuel Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) Presented by PDJF to be run Nov. 6 at Del Mar.

Trained by Paulo Lobo and ridden by Alex Achard, In Love covered the mile on a turf course labeled as good in 1:34.84. For Lobo, it is his second victory in the race having won last year with Ivar (BRZ), who finished fourth in his repeat bid. For Achard, this is his first Grade 1 victory.

Brown Storm (CHI) led the field of 12 through early fractions of :23.37 and :47.30 as In Love raced in midpack while getting a ground-saving trip along the rail. Achard kept In Love inside until the top of the stretch when he swung out six wide to launch his bid that carried him to the front at midstretch and on to victory.

Video: Paulo Lobo

A 5-year-old son of Agnes Gold (JPN) out of the Know Heights (IRE) mare Last Bet (BRZ), In Love improved his record to 13-5-2-2 and his earnings to $729,700 with Saturday’s $450,000 check. It is his third consecutive victory, all with Achard aboard.

“I think the big key was we went to Arlington and tried an easier spot, and he won the race, and then we put blinkers on him and he improved a lot, and running the one-turn mile – they are very unfamiliar in South America with that – and I think the horse is improving,” said trainer Paulo Lobo. “You know, Kentucky Downs horses get very fit. And also he loves it here (at Keeneland). Last year he won an allowance very easy here, and I think the giving ground helped him.

“Also I liked a lot Ivar (BRZ) (who finished fourth, losing a photo for third). I think he was fighting a lot off the long layoff. I think maybe we are going to have three horses in the Breeders’ Cup.” (The third is Kentucky Downs’ Calumet Turf Cup winner Imperador [ARG] for the Turf-G1).

It was Achard’s first Grade 1 victory in his first attempt. He has won five stakes overall, including the first division of the $400,000 TVG Stakes at Kentuy Downs.

“It feels great,” Achard said. “Especially at Keeneland—I love Keeneland—and it couldn’t be any better. He’s getting older but he’s getting better. He’s like a good wine. Every race he shows up and he’s even better every time.”

In Love returned $26.60, $15.40 and $9.60. Tell Your Daddy, ridden by Julien Leparoux, returned $24.60 and $13.20 and finished a half-length ahead of Somelikeithotbrown, who paid $8.20 to show under Jose Ortiz.

It was another head back to Ivar in fourth with Space Traveller (GB), Front Run the Fed, Pixelate, Diamond Oops, Argentello (IRE), Monarchs Glen (GB), Brown Storm and favored Order of Australia (IRE) following in order.

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Jennie Rees