/As American Pharoah Prepares for Breeders’ Cup, His Team Faces a Farewell

As American Pharoah Prepares for Breeders’ Cup, His Team Faces a Farewell

Photo

The exercise rider Jorge Alvarez working out American Pharoah on Thursday at Keeneland before the Breeders’ Cup.

Credit
Brynn Anderson/Associated Press

LEXINGTON, Ky. — On Wednesday afternoon, after steady rain had pelted the Keeneland racecourse for several days, the trainer Bob Baffert and his team left Barn 62, where the Triple Crown winner American Pharoah was under the careful watch of the National Guard, to see what condition the racetrack was in.

They hopped fences and climbed hills, determined to get a feel for what their champion colt was up against during morning training. As they walked, they made small talk — about Baffert’s flat tire earlier in the morning, about what they might find when they reached the top.

There was no acknowledgment of the moment hanging over them like a dark cloud: After American Pharoah races in the Breeders’ Cup Classic on Saturday, he will leave their barn forever for a lucrative career in the breeding shed.

Read Story