Three talented colts battled down the long Churchill Downs homestretch but at the wire it was a determined Home Brew that claimed a nose victory over Creative Minister in the $275,000 Bourbon Trail Stakes on Saturday, 24 September. War Campaign finished another nose back in third.
Trained by Brad Cox for owner-breeders Gary and Mary West, Home Brew, a three-year-old Street Sense colt, became a three-time Stakes winner for his connections. The dark bay colt also has wins in the Listed Oaklawn Stakes and Listed Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park.
Longshot Big Blue Line broke on top and went to the front to set the pace in the 1 3/16-mile contest. Home Brew settled just off the leader in second, content to stalk the early pace while saving ground along the inside rail. Favored Saint Tapit raced to his outside in third, with War Campaign tracking in fourth. Creative Minister was content to rate near the rear of the field through the early stages.
As the field rounded the far turn, Big Blue Line and Saint Tapit began to fade, as Home Brew slipped through an opening along the rail to take a slight lead at the top of the stretch. He was quickly joined by War Campaign who was racing three-wide, and Creative Minister, who was under a full head of steam while racing out near the center of the course.
The trio fought gamely through the final furlong, but at the wire it was a head-bob that determined Home Brew as the victor in the three-horse photo.
Home Brew was bred in Kentucky and is out of the winning Tapit mare, Omnitap. He is a full brother to Air Strike, winner of the G2 Triple Bend Stakes and hails from the family of G1 winner Gunite (who captured the Harrods Creek Stakes earlier on the same card) and the multiple Stakes winners Simplify, Classify, Classic Olympio and Optionality.
In addition to Home Brew, Street Sense is represented this year by Speaker’s Corner, winner of three Graded Stakes this year, including a dominating five-length victory in the G1 Carter Handicap. Additional Stakes winners include Australia Mia, winner of the G2 Clasico Carlos Campino in Chile, Heaven Street (Listed Columbia Stakes), Whelen Springs and Hollis.