2012 – Florida-bred Little Mike won the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1) at Santa Anita by a half-length with jockey Ramon Dominguez aboard.
Trained by Dale Romans for Priscilla Vaccarezza and bred by her husband Carlo Vaccarezza, Little Mike had won three stakes in 2012 including the $150,000 Florida Sunshine Millions Turf at Gulfstream Park, the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic at Churchill Downs and the Grade 1 Arlington Million at Arlington International. However, he went into the Breeders’ Cup Turf at odds of 17-1 after finishing fifth in the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational won by Point of Entry.
In the Breeders’ Cup Turf, Little Mike tracked fellow Florida-bred Turbo Compressor through the first 10 furlongs before shooting to the lead from between horses out of the final turn, taking a clear lead in deep stretch and holding off runner-up Point of Entry.
By Spanish Steps out of Hay Jude, by Wavering Monarch, Little Mike retired with 14 wins, two seconds and a third from 14 starts with earnings of $3,543,392 to rank ninth among all-time leading Florida-bred money earners. At age 26, he currently resides at the Old Friends Thoroughbred retirement farm in Georgetown, Ky.
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