10/03/2014 5:15PM

Peace and War connects at 23-1 in Alcibiades

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Keeneland/Coady Photography
Peace and War, making her first start in the United States after three races in England, wins the Alcibiades under Julien Leparoux.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Peace and War rallied from well off a hot pace to post a 23-1 upset Friday in the 63rd running of the Grade 1, $400,000 Darley Alcibiades Stakes as Keeneland unveiled its new dirt surface on opening day of the fall meet.

Making her North American debut after three races in England, Peace and War came from second-to-last in a field of 12 to win the 1 1/16-mile race by a half-length over Top Decile. Julien Leparoux was aboard for the Qatar Racing of Robert Levitt and trainer Olly Stevens.

Paige, a 64-1 shot, rallied from last to be third, while Milehigh Butterfly was fourth at 28-1, making for huge mutuels. Gap Year, the only maiden in the field and the surprise favorite at 2-1, was seventh, just behind Fashion Alert, the 3-1 second choice, in sixth. Pangburn was a lone scratch.

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Take Charge Brandi, pushed along by Fashion Alert, set swift fractions of 22.54 and 45.60 seconds before the pack started closing in on the far turn. Top Decile, given a patient ride by Rosie Napravnik, burst through an opening to momentarily take command after the field had fanned out and straightened for home, but Leparoux, having followed Napravnik through the pack, angled out his mount for the winning run.

Peace and War returned $48.20 after finishing in 1:44.86 over a track officially rated fast but noticeably saturated by off-and-on rain throughout the afternoon.

The Alcibiades is a Win and You’re In event in the 2-year-old filly division of the Breeders’ Cup, and Stevens, who arrived here Sunday from England, said “that’s the plan” when asked about running back in the BC Juvenile Fillies. Raised in Newmarket, Stevens formerly worked in the United States. for Kentucky-based trainer Kellyn Gorder.

“They brought her here for a test,” said Leparoux, who has won or tied for 10 Keeneland meet riding titles since 2006. “Now comes the big test at Santa Anita.”

Peace and War is a Florida-bred by War Front, one of the hottest sires in the world. She was treated with the bleeder medication Lasix for the first time.

Ontrack attendance was 13,789.

The $2 exacta (11-9) paid $364, the $1 trifecta (11-9-10) returned $4,142.40, and the 10-cent superfecta (11-9-10-2) was worth $2,710.92.

Unlike the Alcibiades result, chalk dominated the early part of the Friday opener, as favorites won races six of the earlier eight races, including Work All Week ($6.40) in the Grade 3 Phoenix Stakes and class-dropping Bourbon Courage ($4.20) in a third-level allowance.