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Forever Together

Forever Together takes Jenny Wiley - with video
For a video replay of the Jenny Wiley, click here.
by Jeff Apel

Reigning champion turf female Forever Together gained command from four wide in early stretch and earned a one-length win in the Jenny Wiley Stakes (G2) on Saturday at Keeneland Race Course.

Forever Together earned the Eclipse Award in her division after concluding last season with consecutive wins in the First Lady Stakes (G1) (click here for video of the First Lady) October 3 at Keeneland and the Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1) (click here for video of the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf) on October 24 at the Oak Tree meet at Santa Anita Park.

The Belong to Me mare also captured the 2008 Diana Stakes (G1) at Saratoga Race Course. Forever Together won four of her seven starts.

Forever Together raced in sixth in the field of seven on Saturday through a quarter-mile in :25.92, half-mile in :51.83, and six furlongs in 1:17.12. Moving up on the outside of foes, the five-year-old mare quickly powered her way to the lead.

Forever Together was ridden out by jockey Julien Leparoux approaching the finish and won the 1 1/16-mile race in 1:46.93 on turf rated as good as the even-money favorite.

Grade 1 winner Rutherienne edged multiple stakes winner Kiss With a Twist by a neck for second.

Trained by Jonathan Sheppard for Augustin Stable, Forever Together posted her eighth win in 15 starts. Bred in Kentucky by White Fox Farm, Forever Together is out of Constant Companion, by Relaunch.

For an Equibase chart, click here.
For a video replay of the Jenny Wiley, click here.

Jeff Apel is an assistant editor of Thoroughbred Times TODAY
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Forever Together

Forever Together voted champion turf female
by Frank Angst

The first United States-bred Thoroughbred to earn the turf female Eclipse Award since 2000 did not make her first career turf start until May 17 of her championship season.
Once Forever Together tried the grass, the Belong to Me filly thrived. In an impressive season-ending stretch, Forever Together earned three Grade 1 wins, closing the year with a three-quarter-length victory in the Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1) at Santa Anita Park.

Trainer Jonathan Sheppard initially switched Forever Together to turf to solve a problem. Sheppard thought the filly would run her best from off the pace but the winner of the 2007 Forward Gal Stakes (G2) on the main track at Gulfstream Park did not like the kickback of a dirt track. Sheppard thought turf would alleviate that problem and allow Forever Together to rate.

In her first turf start, Forever Together responded by winning the one-mile Reluctant Guest Stakes at Arlington Park. On July 26, she secured the first Grade 1 win of her career in the Diana Stakes at Saratoga Race Course before earning a second Grade 1 triumph in the First Lady Stakes on October 3 at Keeneland Race Course.

Forever Together is the first non-steeplechase Eclipse Award winner for owner George Strawbridge’s Augustin Stable. His champion steeplechasers include Pompeyo (Chi) in 2001 and Cafe Prince in ‘77 and ’78. Horses trained by Sheppard have earned 11 Eclipse Awards.

2008 record      

Frank Angst is a Thoroughbred Times senior writer
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