‘An Exceptional Horse,’ Flightline Wins TVG Pacific Classic By 19 1/4 Lengths

In one of the most brilliant performances in the history of Del Mar racetrack, undefeated Flightline staked his claim as the outstanding older Thoroughbred in America with a 19 l/4-length victory in the Grade 1, $1 million TVG Pacific Classic on Saturday in Del Mar, Calif. It was a record winning margin, eclipsing the 12 ½-length triumph by Accelerate in the 2018 Pacific Classic.

His final time of 1:59.28 was only 17 one-hundredths of a second slower than the track record set by Candy Ride in the 2003 renewal of the mile and one-quarter contest.

With regular rider Flavien Prat in the saddle, Flightline was content to rate off of Extra Hope in the early going, took command without being asked midway down the backstretch, then opened up on the far turn, leaving his five rivals far behind and cruised to the wire in majestic style.

Fractions were :23.42,  :46.06,  1:09.97,  1:34.47 en route to the final time of  1:59.28.

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Flightline, a 4-year-old son of Tapit, is owned by Hronis Racing, Summer Wind Equine, West Point Thoroughbreds, Woodford Racing, and Siena Farm.  He was bred by Summer Wind Equine.

The Pacific Classic is a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” race, thus, Flightline has clinched a fees-paid berth in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Keeneland in Kentucky in early November.

The vicory was Flightline’s fifth success in as many starts and first money of $600,000 increased the horse’s earnings to $1,394,800. He was purchased for $1 million as yearling.

A distant runner-up was 7-2 second choice Country Grammer, owned by Commonwealth Thoroughbreds and partners, seven lengths in front of third-place Royal Ship, owned by Fox Hill Farms and Siena Farm.

Flightline, the overwhelming 3-10 favorite, paid $2.60, $2.10 and $2.10 across the board, while Country Grammer returned $2.60 and $2.20 and Royal Ship paid $2.60 to show.

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