The 1984 Breeders' Cup Classic
The 1984 Breeders’ Cup Classic
Winner: Wild Again
The 1984 Breeders’ Cup World Championships took place at Hollywood Park in Inglewood, California on November 10th. It was the inaugural edition of what would become the premier North American horse racing event while featuring a number of exciting races and finishes. The highlight and anchor of the card was the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1).
Slew o’ Gold was considered the horse to beat in the 1984 Breeders’ Cup Classic field of eight. Heading into the prestigious event of the first ever Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Slew o’ Gold had won all five of his previous races that year, including four grade one stakes races – the Whitney Handicap, the Woodward Stakes, the Marlboro Cup Invitational Handicap, and the Jockey Club Gold Cup.
Many expected Slew o’ Gold to win his sixth straight race and retire as the Horse of the Year front-runner in what would be his final career race.
During the race, everything was going according to plan, with a chance to cross the finish line in first. With 1/16th of a mile left, the race began to fall apart for Slew o’ Gold as Gate Dancer interfered during a frenzy on the outside which led to stewards posting an inquiry sign. After 10 minutes of delay to watch the film, they declared Wild Again the winner and disqualified Gate Dancer. Slew o’ Gold came in second to 33-1 longshot Wild Again.
“It's too bad to end this way, but people who saw him in New York know how good he is, how much better he is than these horses,” said Slew o’ Gold jockey Angel Cordero.
Wild Again, who led for most of the race, paid $64.60 for the win. He was a supplemental entry, and his connections were forced to pay a $360,000 fee for him to enter the race. They made that back and then some, as first place came with a prize of $1,350,000. He improved his record to 8-4-4 in 24 career starts.