By Pierce O’Reilly
Two of Ireland’s top race horses are set for another box-office showdown in New York later this month.
Aidan O’Brian’s Galileo will be coming to the Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships at Belmont Park on Oct. 27.
Galileo will run in the $4 million Breeders’ Cup Classic. He will be one of the favorites in the race, along with Fantastic Light, who beat him by a neck in the Irish Champion Stakes on Sept. 8. It was Galileo’s first loss.
Galileo defeated Fantastic Light in the King George VI Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes at Royal Ascot prior to that race.
The 3-year-old, trained by Aiden O’Brien and ridden by Michael Kinane, won the English and Irish Derbies earlier this year.
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In addition to these top European entries, the Breeders’ Cup Classic will feature the top American horses in training, most likely led by 2000 Classic champion Tiznow. The field could include up to 14 other top class entries.
The 18th annual Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships will feature eight championship races with total purse money in excess of $13 million. The event will be televised in the U.S. on NBC from 1-6 p.m. and by numerous networks around the world.
The 2001 Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships has been dedicated to the victims, including firefighters, police and other rescue workers, of the Sept. 11 World Trade Center terrorist attack. A special NTRA Charities-New York Heroes Fund has been established to aid surviving families. A portion of all event admissions and other revenues will be contributed to the fund, as will the proceeds from the annual Breeders’ Cup Ball.