FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 29th, 2016
KENTUCKY DERBY WINNER NYQUIST AND PREAKNESS WINNER EXAGGERATOR SQUARE OFF IN HASKELL INVITATIONAL AT MONMOUTH PARK THIS SUNDAY, JULY 31 LIVE AT 5 PM ET ON NBC
Classic berth at stake on Broadcast of “Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win And You’re In – Presented By Lane’s End Farm and America’s Best Racing”
NEW YORK (July 28, 2016) – Kentucky Derby winner Nyquist and Preakness Stakes winner Exaggerator will square off again on Sunday, July 31 as the 2016 “Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In presented by Lane’s End Farm and America’s Best Racing” continues with the live broadcast on NBC at 5:00 p.m. ET from Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J, with an outstanding renewal of the $1,000,000 Haskell Invitational, an automatic qualifier for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic.
Sunday’s program is the fourth of nine telecasts in the “Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In, presented by Lane’s End Farm and America’s Best Racing,” on NBC and NBCSN, featuring 16 “Win And You’re In” races plus other major stakes on the road to the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, November 4-5 at Santa Anita Park, and televised by NBC Sports Group. The series will also be streamed live on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app. Winners of these Challenge races, which combined offer more than $10 million in purses, automatically qualify for a spot in the Breeders’ Cup.
Tom Hammond hosts the Haskell Invitational broadcast, and will be joined by Hall of Fame jockey and analyst Jerry Bailey, analyst Randy Moss, reporter Kenny Rice and Handicapper Eddie Olczyk. Daily Racing Form’s Matt Bernier will also serve as a handicapper.
Reddam Racing’s Nyquist comes into the Haskell, which will be run at 1 1/8 miles for 3-year-olds, making his first start since finishing third in the Preakness after setting a grueling pace during the first three quarters a mile. He could not sustain the drive into the stretch and was passed by Exaggerator. Trained by Doug O’Neill and ridden by Mario Gutierrez, Nyquist was undefeated in his first eight career starts including the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and the Florida Derby.
Exaggerator, trained by Keith Desormeaux and ridden by his younger brother Kent, showed his talents over a wet track winning the Santa Anita Derby and was a fast-closing second behind Nyquist in the Kentucky Derby before turning the tables in the Preakness with a 3 ½ length win on a sloppy racetrack.. Owned by Big Chief Racing, Head of the Plains Partners LLC, and Rocker O Ranch et al., Exaggerator was a disappointing 11th as the favorite in the Belmont Stakes.
With the addition of Winchell Thoroughbreds, Three Chimneys Farm and Besilu Stables’ Gun Runner, the first three finishers from this year’s Kentucky Derby have been entered in the Haskell. Trained by Steve Asmussen, Gun Runner has won four of seven career starts, including front-running scores in the Louisiana and Arkansas Derbies.
The last two winners of the Haskell, Bayern and American Pharoah, went on to win the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Both horses were trained by Bob Baffert, who has saddled eight Haskell winners. This year, Baffert brings in the late developing American Freedom, a winner of three of four starts including the Sir Barton Stakes at Pimlico and the Iowa Derby on July 1.
About Breeders’ Cup
The Breeders’ Cup administers the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Thoroughbred racing’s year-end Championships. The Breeders’ Cup also administers the Breeders’ Cup Challenge qualifying series, which provides automatic starting positions into the Championships races. The 2016 Breeders’ Cup World Championships, consisting of 13 (grade I) races and purses totalling $28 million, will be held Nov. 4-5 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif., and will be televised live by the NBC Sports Group. Breeders’ Cup press releases appear on the Breeders’ Cup Web site, www.breederscup.com. You can also follow the Breeders’ Cup on social media platforms Facebook, Twitter, InstaGram and YouTube
About NBC Sports Group
When the Comcast-NBCUniversal transaction was completed in January 2011, the sports assets of the two companies combined to form NBC Sports Group, which serves sports fans 24/7 with premier live events, insightful studio shows, and compelling original programming. The sports media company consists of a unique array of sports assets, including NBC Sports, NBC Olympics, NBCSN (NBC Sports Network), Golf Channel, 9 NBC Sports Regional Networks, NBC Sports Radio and NBC Sports Digital. NBC Sports Group possesses an unparalleled collection of television rights agreements, partnering with some of the most prestigious sports properties in the world: the International Olympic Committee and United States Olympic Committee, the NFL, NHL, NASCAR, PGA TOUR, PGA of America, Royal & Ancient, Churchill Downs, NYRA, Breeders’ Cup, Premier League, Tour de France, French Open, Formula One, IndyCar and many more.