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American Pharoah Proves His Greatness

Last month I wrote that Triple Crown winner American Pharoah would have just a single opportunity to prove his greatness against older competition in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Boy, did he ever make the most of it. The highly anticipated match-up between American Pharoah and Beholder didn’t take place after Spendthrift Farm’s two-time champion mare was scratched because of a fever and subsequent bleeding episode two days before the Oct. 31 Classic. The line-up still included a two-time Jockey Club Gold Cup and Belmont Stakes winner (Tonalist), a Metropolitan Mile Handicap and Whitney Stakes winner (Honor Code) and the only horse to beat American Pharoah this year (Keen Ice, the Travers winner). The race was contested on neutral ground; none of the contenders had ever competed on Keeneland’s dirt track. It would be a fair test. The second guessers were out in full force, wondering why American Pharoah’s Hall of Fame…

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