Godolphin Racing's Questing, who was eased in the Nov. 2 Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic after showing no inclination to run, was found to have suffered an injury to her eye, though no one knows exactly how and when it happened.
"When she got back to the barn that evening, her eye was swollen shut," Godolphin racing manager Simon Crisford said. "Fortunately, it was fine the following morning. We're not sure what happened, but she seemed fine going to the post, so you would have to assume something happened in the starting gate. Perhaps she banged herself or got hit with something as soon as the gates opened.
"It's really a shame, because the race would have set up perfectly for her, with her speed and the way the track was playing, favoring speed. She was coming up to the race in fantastic shape."
Besilu Stables' Royal Delta won the Ladies' Classic for the second consecutive year. Questing, ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr., broke behind the others in the Ladies' Classic and gradually dropped out of contention before being eased. She was removed from the track by equine ambulance, but on-call veterinarians said they detected no injuries upon inspection.
Questing, a 3-year-old Hard Spun filly bred by Darley in Great Britain, was sent off as the 8-1 fourth choice in the eight-horse field despite having scored dominating victories in the Alabama Stakes and TVG Coaching Club American Oaks. In her previous start, she was narrowly beaten by My Miss Aurelia in the Cotillion Stakes over a deep, tiring track at Parx Racing while giving the winner seven pounds.