Pavel becomes millionaire with Grade 1 Stephen Foster H. victory

Creative Cause and his son Pavel both reached milestones when the 4-year-old colt surged to a 3 3/4-length victory in the $500,000 Stephen Foster H. (G1) under the lights at Churchill Downs.

Pavel became racing’s newest millionaire with the dynamic victory, and at the same time became the first horse by Creative Cause to reach millionaire status.

Pavel has helped lift Creative Cause to the top of the Third-Crop Sire list, but he has had plenty of help with five stakes winners, six stakes wins, eight stakes horses, and more than $3.1 million in progeny earnings, all tops in their respective categories.

Making his first start since a troubled trip in last month’s Gold Cup (G1), Pavel broke with good energy from his outside post in the field of nine, Pavel moved up to fourth on the outside as the field made its way around the first turn.

Maintaining his spot for the backstretch run, Pavel had to ease back slightly at the half-mile pole when Irish War Cry, just in front of him, stopped suddenly. Mario Gutierrez got Pavel back in gear quickly and he came three wide to power past heavily-favored Backyard Heaven at the top of the stretch.

Quickly opening up by three lengths, Pavel was all alone the rest of the way and won handily. He completed the 1 1/8-mile distance over a fast track in 1:49.21. 

“I really have to thank the owners with this horse and my brother, Dennis, who helped us pick out this horse. We were very optimistic with him all along and to see him put it together was great,” trainer Doug O’Neill said. “We had some traffic troubles in his last couple of races.” 
Pavel, who is owned by Reddam Racing, is 3-0-1 in ten starts, including a victory in last September’s Smarty Jones S. (G3) and has won $1,175,000.

 The victory in the Stephen Foster Handicap, a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In Classic Division” race, earned Pavel a guaranteed spot in the starting gate for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1), which will also be run at the Louisville track on Saturday, Nov. 3. 

The winner was bred by Brereton C. Jones and WinStar Farm and is a half-brother to multiple Grade 2 winner Caracortado and stake winner He’ll Pay.