10/15/2016 5:28PM

Phillips family regains Queen Elizabeth II glory, thanks to Time and Motion

Coady Photography
Time and Motion, under John Velazquez, prevails by a head in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Twenty years after their last victory in the race they treasure, the Phillips family was finally back in the Keeneland winner’s circle when Time and Motion outfought two other rivals Saturday in a thrilling 33rd running of the Grade 1, $500,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup.

“We're so blessed to be here at Keeneland with the home crowd and our family,” said John Phillips, whose family owned five winners of the QE II from1987 to 1996. “It was great because we had the entire family from all over the country here.”

Just a few jumps before the wire in the 1 1/8-mile turf race, Time and Motion stuck her head in front of Hawksmoor, who had been clinging tenaciously to the lead after putting away favored Catch a Glimpse leaving the quarter pole. But then Harmonize came rolling on the outside, and the trio passed under the wire together, with Time and Motion prevailing by a head over Harmonize, and Hawksmoor another nose back in third.

Time and Motion, ridden by John Velazquez, returned $8 as second choice in a field of eight 3-year-old fillies after finishing in 1:50.24 over a firm course.

“I thought I had the horse in front, but my filly didn’t want to pass her,” said Velazquez. “Then the other horse came to our outside and that’s what made her go forward.”

New York-based Jimmy Toner trains homebred Time and Motion for the Phillips Racing Partnership.

“You don’t know how big this is,” said Toner, whose two prior QE II winners for the family were Tribulation (1993) and Memories of Silver (1996). “It had been 20 years since we won our last one. It was today or God knows when.”

The other QE II winners for the Phillipses and their Darby Dan Farm founded by John Galbreath were Graceful Darby (1987), Love You by Heart (1988), and Plenty of Grace (1990).

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It was the fourth QE II win for Velazquez, following Perfect Arc (1995), Alwajeeha (2008), and Crown Queen (2014).

On Leave, the 3-1 third choice, was fourth, another 4 3/4 lengths behind the top three. Mokat was fifth, Stays in Vegas sixth, and Catch a Glimpse faded to seventh as the 8-5 choice. Queen Caroline brought up the rear. Try Your Luck was an early scratch.

The QE II was the sixth and final Grade 1 race of a front-loaded fall meet that runs through Oct. 29.

The $2 exacta (7-4) paid $65.40, the $1 trifecta (7-4-5) returned $301.10, and the 10-cent superfecta (7-4-5-2) was worth $130.78.

Attendance on another sun-splashed afternoon was 29,319.

Two races earlier, Jose Ortiz rated Coalport ($12.40) just off the pace in giving Ramsey Farm and trainer Mike Maker their second victory of the day in a $60,427, classified turf allowance for older horses. Allied Air Raid was second as the favorite in a full field of 12.