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Beholder Ready For Greatest Challenge
Dual Eclipse winner Beholder tuned up for her biggest challenge to date when breezing a half mile at Del Mar on Monday, reports Blood Horse. The champion 5YO mare will face males for the first time and step up to a distance of a mile-and-a-quarter for the first time in her career when she lines up in the Gr1 Pacific Classic on Saturday. "There are two questions: I think she can get a mile-and-a-quarter, but she hasn't done it," trainer Richard Mandella said. "Second of all, she hasn't run against colts. Those are two different things. But that's what the interest was, to try something a little bit stronger and see what happens." He added: "I think she deserves this chance and I would be pretty disappointed if it didn't work out." Restricted to racing against her own sex to date, Beholder has proven to be almost unstoppable winning 13 of her 18 starts for over US3.6 million prize money. At her most recent start, the daughter of Henny Hughes registered the seventh Gr1 victory of her career when scoring a runaway 7-length win in the Clement L Hirsch Stakes (8.5 furlongs) at Del Mar on 1 August.