Entered to run Saturday in the $500,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Presented by Lane’s End (G1), Del Mar Oaks (G1) winner Fatale Bere (FR) arrived at Keeneland Tuesday from her Southern California base. She wasted no time leaving the barn, going for a jog with a lead pony Wednesday morning on the training track.
Owned by the partnership of the Benowitz Family Trust, Head of Plains Partners, Mark Mathiesen and Mathilde Powell, Fatale Bere will mark the first Keeneland starter for trainer Leonard Powell in 10 years.
“I brought one horse here for an allowance race in 2008,” Powell said of Scarlett’s Place, who finished fifth in that April race.
Fatale Bere came to Powell’s barn last year after beginning her career in France.
“She was purchased privately after she won her first two races,” Powell said. “She ran once more there and then came over and won a prep (the Surfer Girl) for the Breeders’ Cup.”
In the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1), Fatale Bere finished fifth beaten 2½ lengths by Rushing Fall, a filly she will see again in the QE II.
Fatale Bere has won two of her four starts in 2018 with both victories coming at the QE II distance of 1 1/8 miles. She has not raced since her Del Mar Oaks victory Aug. 18.
“It was more sensible to keep her with 3-year-old fillies and she runs well fresh,” Powell said.
Since coming to the U.S., Fatale Bere has run on firm courses at Santa Anita, Del Mar and Belmont Park. With rain in the forecast the next two days, softer going may be possible for Saturday.
“That is a question,” Powell said. “She is really good on firm, but she is inbred to (1985 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe-G1 winner)Rainbow Quest and he liked soft turf. So that gives me hope it will not be an issue.”