10/24/2012 12:12PM

Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf: Europeans hold strong hand

Barbara D. Livingston
Watsdachances is one of the top U.S.-based contenders in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf.

A European shipper has yet to win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, but the drought could end in the fifth running of the race Nov. 2, when a host of runners from across the pond participate.

In all, 18 horses were pre-entered in the one-mile event, which went with a 12-horse field in the first two runnings of the race at Santa Anita. The first seven get in on points, and the others gain inclusion through the selection committee. Renee’s Queen is cross-entered with her first preference in the Juvenile Fillies

Five Europeans were pre-entered, most notably Sky Lantern, who earned a fees-paid trip to the race as part of the Win and You’re In program when she took the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes in Ireland. Sky Lantern has three wins and two seconds in five starts, all for English trainer Richard Hannon.

Infanta Branca has been competitive in listed stakes company in Ireland without finding the mark. Her trainer, Aidan O’Brien, sent out Lillie Langtry to finish eighth as the favorite in the 2009 BC Juvenile Fillies Turf at Santa Anita.

[BREEDERS' CUP 2012: Pre-entered fields with odds and comments]

Waterway Run captured three of four starts in England, including the Group 3 Oh So Sharp Stakes at Newmarket. She earned a 101 Racing Post Rating in that seven-furlong event, which compared favorably with the numbers awarded to Sky Lantern before that filly got a 111 rating in the Moyglare Stud Stakes.

The Gold Cheongsam, a three-time winner, has banked more than $400,000 in England, mostly in lucrative restricted stakes company.

The French runner Flotilla finished a close fourth in an important Group 1 fixture at Longchamp in her last outing, when she earned a 104 Racing Post Rating.

Two Irish-bred pre-entrants, Watsdachances and Nancy O, have been based in North America.

[BREEDERS' CUP 2012: Race-by-race coverage, video, early odds]

* An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that the Juvenile Fillies Turf was Renee's Queen's first preference and the Juvenile Fillies was her second preference.