Updated on 09/15/2011 12:52PM

Aptitude wins Saratoga Breeders' Cup


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Less than 20 minutes before Skimming gave trainer Bobby Frankel his sixth Pacific Classic victory, Frankel watched Aptitude easily dispose of six rivals in the $300,000, Grade 2 Saratoga Breeders' Cup at Saratoga.

Frankel was so preoccupied with getting to a television set to watch Skimming, that he bolted out of the Saratoga winner's circle before the trophy presentation. When notified he had 10 minutes to post before the Pacific Classic, Frankel came back for the picture before heading to racing secretary Mike Lakow's office to watch Skimming.

Between Aptitude, Skimming and Flute, who won Saturday's Alabama, Frankel's stakes horses earned $1.23 million in a span of 24 hours. Earlier in the week, Frankel won the Grade 2 Adirondack here with You.

``I'm pretty excited right now,' Frankel said.

Frankel said he shipped Aptitude out of California because he thought he'd like the East Coast tracks better. That and the addition of blinkers in his last start, the Hollywood Gold Cup, had Aptitude fairly close to a pedestrian pace in the Saratoga Breeders' Cup.

Under Jerry Bailey, Aptitude was never more than four lengths off the pace, established by Gander. Aptitude gradually advanced into contention, made a four-wide move around the turn and took over turning for home. He finished 4 1/4 lengths ahead of Perfect Cat, who finished a length in front of A Fleets Dancer. Gander, Top Official, Ground Storm and Pleasant Breeze completed the order of finish.

Aptitude, a Juddmonte Farms homebred son of A P Indy, covered the 1 1/4 miles in 2:01.55 and returned $4 as the even-money favorite.

``He was never more than four or five lengths off the lead at anytime,' said Bailey, who won his 10th stakes, equaling his Saratoga record set last year. ``By the time I hit the half-mile pole, he was within three. He was much more aggressive rather than kind of sheepish in the other race I rode him in.'

Bailey was referring to the Californian at Hollywood where he finished third.

``I thought he would [run better] on these tracks that's why I brought him back here,' Frankel said. ``The footing's better. I had a filly named Keeper Hill and she couldn't run a yard at Hollywood. Then she got back here and started winning Group 1'

Frankel, who is 7 for 15 at this meet with four graded stakes wins, said he would point Aptitude to the $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont Park on Oct. 6. He said would run Lido Palace, the Whitney winner, in the Woodward on Sept. 8.