Daily Racing Form National Digital Edition - - Front Page - By Marty McGee

LEX­ING­TON, Ky. – The name of one of the op­po­nents for Rush­ing Fall might be a clue as to what chance they all have: Mis­sion Im­pas­si­ble.

In­deed, the mis­sion for seven other 3-year-old fil­lies – if their con­nec­tions all choose to ac­cept it – will be to out­run Rush­ing Fall, whose bril­liant record sug­gests an up­set is im­prob­a­ble Satur­day when the $500,000 Queen El­iz­a­beth II Chal­lenge Cup is run for the 35th time over the Keeneland turf.

Once beaten in six ca­reer at­tempts, Rush­ing Fall will be heav­ily fa­vored with Javier Castel­lano aboard from the out­side post in the 1 1/8-mile QE II, the sixth and last Grade 1 race of the Keeneland fall meet.

Rush­ing Fall is trained by Chad Brown, whose sen­sa­tional 2018 gained even more mo­men­tum last week­end when he won four Grade 1 races, in­clud­ing the First Lady with A Rav­ing Beauty on the Keeneland turf. Owned by the eFive Rac­ing Thor­ough­breds of Bob and Kris­tine Edwards, Rush­ing Fall won the Breed­ers’ Cup Ju­ve­nile Fil­lies Turf last Novem­ber at Del Mar and was a dom­i­nat­ing win­ner of the Grade 2 Lake Placid at Saratoga in her most re­cent start in mid-Au­gust, earn­ing a ca­reer-high 96 Beyer Speed Fig­ure.

Since then, the Ken­tuck­y­bred daugh­ter of More Than Ready has not missed a beat in her morn­ing train­ing, reel­ing off six straight work­outs in New York, end­ing with a five-fur­long drill last Satur­day in 1:00.80 with the dogs up on a yield­ing Bel­mont Park turf.

“She re­ally is train­ing well,” said Brown, who said he is un­likely to be here for the race, in­stead dep­u­tiz­ing his as­sis­tant Whit Beck­man. “We’re ex­pect­ing an­other big ef­fort from her.”

One of the main foes for Rush­ing Fall could be Daddy Is a Le­gend (post 4, Robby Al­barado), who has fin­ished be­hind Rush­ing Fall all four times they’ve met. But trainer Ge­orge Weaver said he will con­sider scratch­ing Daddy Is a Le­gend in fa­vor of the Grade 3 Val­ley View, a 1 1/16-mile turf race for 3-year-old fil­lies here next Fri­day.

“We’re not 100 per­cent com­mit­ted to this race,” said Weaver. “It’ll be a race-day de­ci­sion. First, I’m not sure we want to face Rush­ing Fall again, although the Grade 1 is en­tic­ing. But there’s been some give to the Keeneland turf, and that’s prob­a­bly not to our ad­van­tage, and nei­ther is the mile and an eighth. We’ll see how it all shapes up Satur­day morn­ing.”

From Cal­i­for­nia, Fa­tale Bere (post 3, Kent De­sormeaux) could emerge as a late threat to Rush­ing Fall on the as­sump­tion that the French-bred filly’s vic­tory last out in the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks is proof of sub­stan­tial im­prove­ment since she was fifth last fall in the BC Ju­ve­nile Fil­lies Turf. Leonard Pow­ell trains Fa­tale Bere for a multi-tiered part­ner­ship.

“She is re­ally good on firm,” said Pow­ell, adding it prob­a­bly wouldn’t hurt for the course to have some give, ow­ing to the filly’s pedi­gree.

Mis­sion Im­pas­si­ble (post 5, Florent Ger­oux) is one of two ship­pers from Europe in the QE II lineup, along with Nyaleti (post 1, Corey Lanerie).

Mis­sion Im­pas­si­ble, by the great sire Galileo, has raced ex­clu­sively in France, win­ning four of nine starts, all for trainer Jean-Claude Rouget, with a Group 2 vic­tory at Chan­tilly in early June be­ing her most no­table ef­fort.

Nyaleti was a Group 2 win­ner in Ger­many in late May but has raced pri­mar­ily in Eng­land. Trained by Mark John­ston, she ran sixth at 38-1 in the Grade 1 Bev­erly D. at Ar­ling­ton Park.

Nei­ther of the Euro ship­pers will be treated with the di­uretic Lasix, nor will Princess War­rior (post 2, Brian Her­nan­dez Jr.) or Capla Temptress (post 7, Julien Leparoux).

Capla Temptress, sec­ond to Rush­ing Fall in the Lake Placid, will be mak­ing her third start since Bill Mott as­sumed her train­ing for Team Valor In­ter­na­tional.

Fill­ing out the QE II lineup is the Mary­land ship­per Se­cret Mes­sage (post 6, Jorge Var­gas Jr.), win­ner of the Grade 3 Pucker Up on the Ar­ling­ton Mil­lion un­der­card and most re­cently sec­ond in the Grade 2 Sands Point at Bel­mont.

The QE II, first run in 1984 when the queen of Eng­land was in at­ten­dance at age 58, long has been a ma­jor end-of-sea­son goal for horse­men with top 3-year-old turf fil­lies. No QE II win­ner has cap­tured the Breed­ers’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf in the same sea­son, although two have won in sub­se­quent years: Per­fect Sting (1999) and the Brown-trained Day­atthespa (2012).

Brown is not point­ing Rush­ing Fall to the Nov. 3 BC Filly and Mare Turf at Churchill Downs be­cause of the longer 1 3/8-mile dis­tance.

The QE II is carded as the ninth of 10 races. First post is 1:05 p.m. East­ern, with the fea­ture go­ing at 5:30. Three al­lowances (races 3, 8, 10) are part of a solid un­der­card. TVG will have ex­ten­sive cov­er­age on an af­ter­noon ex­pected to draw an on­track crowd of 30,000 amid mid-50s tem­per­a­tures and mostly sunny skies.



Rush­ing Fall, shown train­ing at Keeneland on Wed­nes­day, won the Grade 2 Lake Placid last out.

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