John Gosden To Miss the Breeders' Cup

Horse Racing Radar
Valerie Mellema
Valerie Mellema is a Staff writer for Horse Racing Radar
Thursday, October 29, 2020

One of the world's great Thoroughbred racing trainers has qualified three horses for the 2020 Breeders' Cup. Unfortunately, he won't be there to see them race.


Any Thoroughbred racing trainer like John Gosden, who can boast of having won 600 races in America—including five Breeders' Cup races, can legitimately lay claim to greatness. Gosden, however, is not even an American. Rather, he is one of the greatest British racing trainers of all time with more than 3000 winners around the world, including more than 100 Grade I race winners.


This year, Gosden sent three horses across the Atlantic to race in Breeders' Cup titles. The first of these is Grade I Champion LORD NORTH, who will run in the Breeders' Cup Longines Turf. Frankie Dettori, one of the most accomplished of the English jockeys, will be in the irons. The Turf has a $4 million guaranteed purse for racers on its 1-1/2 mile inner grass oval. LORD NORTH is an Irish bred four-year-old gelding who has won six of his 11-lifetime starts, including the GI Prince of Wales Stakes at Ascot. The horse prospers by waiting at the back of the pack and breaking for home as other horses begin to tire.


Gosden has a second horse entered in the Longines Turf, a four-year-old filly named MEHDAAYIH. She was cross entered in the Filly and Mare Turf before Gosden decided to put her in line for the Longines Turf. Like her stablemate, MEHDAAYIH ran in the Prince of Wales, only to sustain a back injury that restricted her training and running. She has four wins and two places in 12-lifetime starts, with lifetime earnings of $383,274.


Gosden's third horse is the Irish bred TEREBELLUM, a Grade II winning filly for whom the Filly and Mare Turf will be her last competition. She will be returning to the continent and the brood shed following the Breeders' Cup. TEREBELLUM has posted three wins, one place, and two shows in eight lifetime starts, earning $288,328. With a $2 million purse, the race is 1-3/16 miles for horses three and older.


None of his ponies will be going off as favorites on November 7, which is fine with Gosden, who has a reputation for bringing in surprising wins. Unfortunately, he'll be following the races at a great distance as the COVID-19 pandemic has curtailed his ability to travel. He's turned training responsibilities over to associates and will watch via the Internet from his headquarters in Newmarket, England.