Breeders' Cup Distaff: Beholder beats Songbird in Santa Anita

Beholder beats Songbird at the Breeders' Cup
Beholder, aged six, just gets the better of three-year-old Songbird

Beholder inflicted the first defeat on Songbird in a thrilling photo finish to win the Breeders' Cup Distaff by a nose at Santa Anita Park on Friday.

Songbird, unbeaten in 11 starts, was pipped at the post by Beholder, ridden in her final race by 53-year-old Gary Stevens for trainer Richard Mandella.

Lancaster Bomber, for Irish trainer Aidan O'Brien, was second behind Oscar Performance in the Juvenile Turf.

But there were no wins for the British and Irish contingent on day one.

O'Brien's Roly Poly and Hydrangea, along with Intricately - trained by his son Joseph - finished down the field in the Juvenile Fillies Turf, won by New Money Honey.

Beholder was clocking up a third career Breeders' Cup win.

"I've had some good feelings in racing but this is tops here," said Stevens. "It was a heck of a horse race, and a hell of a way to go out."

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