The Ramseys secured their 38th stakes win of the year, nearly four times the total of the next-closest owners in the U.S. (three are tied with 10), and their 16 graded stakes this year are double that of Juddmonte Farms, which is next with eight.
Likewise, the Ramseys are dominating the Keeneland fall meet with eight wins, including three graded stakes wins. No other owner has more than two wins at the meeting.
Asked in a post-race television interview after the race to explain how he and his wife were feeling, Ken Ramsey said they were on “Cloud Nine” earlier in the year but had soared well past that to “Cloud 13 or 14.”
WINNER'S CIRCLE CELEBRATION
Ken Ramsey (middle with arm around jockey Julien Leparoux) and his wife, Sarah (seated in front), continued a remarkable campaign in 2013 with a win by homebred Kitten's Dumplings in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Stakes on Saturday. (Keeneland photo)
In front of a crowd of 32,717, a record for the fall meet, Kitten’s Dumplings rallied past six horses in the final three-eighths of a mile and then held off fast-finishing Grade 1 winner Alterite to win by a neck under Julien Leparoux.
“I tried to get a jump on Johnny [Velazquez, riding Alterite] before I actually asked this filly. We got to the lead and he never could catch us,” Leparoux said.
“She always comes from behind. We had the pace today; they went very fast up front. I tried to settle her behind, and she made a big run at the end.”
The third betting choice, Kitten’s Dumplings paid $11.80 for a $2 win bet.
Kitten’s Dumplings had not raced since finishing fourth in the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks in August, which followed a streak of three straight stakes wins for trainer Mike Maker.
Alterite finished second as the 1.70-to-1 favorite, a half-length in front of Caroline Thomas.
Kitten’s Dumplings completed 1 1/8 miles in 1:48.43 for her sixth win in 12 career starts. The Grade 1 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup was her fifth career stakes win.
The Ramseys bred Kitten’s Dumplings. She is by 2004 champion turf male Kitten’s Joy, another homebred of the Ramseys. Kitten’s Joy currently tops the U.S. general sire list and has sired a remarkable 22 individual stakes winners in 2013.
For an Equibase chart, click here.
KITTEN'S DUMPLINGS (red and white silks) EDGES ALTERITE