The Punisher Wins Carlos Pellegrini In Argentina To Kick Off 2023 Breeders’ Cup Challenge ‘Win And You’re In’ Series – Horse Racing News


The Punisher, with Martin Valle at the reins, wins the G1 Carlos Pellegrini, South America’s most prestigious race

Haras El Angel De Venecia’s homebred The Punisher passed El Musical in deep stretch to capture Saturday’s 1 ½-mile Gran Premio Carlos Pellegrini-Internacional (G1) at Hipodromo de San Isidro in Buenos Aires. With the win, The Punisher earned an automatic berth into next year’s $4-million Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1) through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In.

The Gran Premio Carlos Pellegrini-Internacional, South America’s most prestigious race, is the first Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series race of the 2023 season.

The Punisher ($22.70), a 3-year-old son of Cityscape out of O.k. Angie, by Orpen, is trained by Carlos D. Etchechoury and was ridden by Martin Valle. The victory brought Etchechoury his fourth win in the Carlos Pellegrini.

Breaking alertly from post 6 in a 15-horse field, The Punisher was rated off the rail by Valle in sixth place through the first 800 meters as two-time Group 1 winner Irwin set the pace along with Hacer Un Puente. El Musical, at 5-1, ranged up along the rail at the top of the stretch to engage the front-runner as Irwin began to fade. The Punisher began a concerted drive outside of the leaders and engaged El Musical in a furious stretch battle, passing his rival in the final yards to prevail by three-quarters of a length. El Cid Campeador finished third followed by Don Tigre in fourth and Irwin in fifth.

The Punisher completed the 1 ½ miles in 2:24.47 over a course listed as normal. It was his third win in six starts and his first Group 1 triumph. The Punisher finished third in the Gran Premio Jockey Club (G1) at San Isidro in his previous start on Oct. 15.

The Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series is an international series of stakes races whose winners receive automatic starting positions and fees paid into a corresponding race of the 2023 Breeders’ Cup World Championships, which is scheduled to be held on Nov. 3-4 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California.

As a part of the benefits of the Challenge series, the Breeders’ Cup will pay the entry fees for The Punisher to start in the 1 ½-mile Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf. Breeders’ Cup also will provide a $40,000 travel allowance for all starters based outside of North America to compete in the World Championships.

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