BreederFred W. Hertrich III & John D. Fielding
Lauren and Ralph M. Evans’ Diversify is the pride of New York going into the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic. A New York-bred trained by Empire State-based Richard Violette, Jr., he has raced solely in his home state, but competed equally well over three of its very different dirt surfaces — Belmont’s sweeping 1 1/2-miles oval, Saratoga’s historic nine-furlong course and Aqueduct’s often quirky one-mile inner track.
Diversify enters the Classic in career-best form, having become one of the few New York-breds to capture the state’s top race for older horses, the historic Jockey Club Gold Cup. Going to the front from the get-go under Irad Ortiz, Jr., the 4-year-old bay gelding was never truly tested throughout, setting realistic fractions before coming home impressively to a one-length victory over fellow Classic hopefuls Keen Ice and Pavel. That effort was his first try in graded company and followed two consecutive one-sided victories over fellow state-breds.
A late bloomer, Diversify did not start until July of his 3-year-old year, a month after his generation had already completed the Triple Crown of 2016. He originally raced for WinStar Farm early in his career, winning his first two starts for them, but then was offered at Keeneland’s 2016 November Breeding Stock Sale where the Evanses purchased him for $210,000. He reeled off two more wins for his new connections before a disappointing effort in the Stymie Stakes at Aqueduct, but rebounded for a pair of good seconds. He was runner-up in a tough allowance (behind Rally Cry, whom he would subsequently beat in the Gold Cup) and in the Commentator Stakes prior to the three-race win streak he carries into the Classic. Overall, he has a record of seven wins and two seconds from 10 starts and $775,425 in earnings.
A son of Wood Memorial winner Bellamy Road, he is strikingly similar in style and build to his sizable, free-running father, and he’s flush with stamina on his mother’s side. Altogether, he is a double threat of speed and endurance that could give swift types like Gun Runner and Collected all they can handle in the day’s marquee event.
|No Replay Available||December 14, 2016||AQUEDUCT|
|No Replay Available||September 22, 2016||BELMONT PARK|
|No Replay Available||July 14, 2016||BELMONT PARK|