The 36th Breeders’ Cup gets underway Friday and runs through Saturday. It will be held at Santa Anita for the 10th time. The large pools will provide betting opportunities to make an entire season profitable with one or two wagers.
Most of the races have historical trends worth considering. Some races tend to ignite larger payoffs while others are much more formful. Certain trainers, prep races and running styles have been more predominant than others depending on the race. Here are five of the more illuminating trends:
JUVENILE TURF: European shippers have won 9 of the 12 years this race has been active and have been second four additional times. More specifically, the Group 1 Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket in Great Britain has been the key prep overseas with three winners and a runner-up finish.
SPRINT: There have been just three wire-to-wire winners of this race and given the amount of early speed in the 2019 version, it becomes a very important statistic. Not surprisingly, the superfecta payout is the second highest payout average all-time.
MILE: This is one of the original seven championship races that began in 1984. Only the great Lure was able to go wire to wire in this race. He did it in back to back years (1992 and 1993). Twenty-two of the 35 winners (63 percent) won this race closing in from either mid-pack or from near last. The pace tends to get hot and typically falls apart late.
DISTAFF: Low prices have dominated. The winner has gone off at 4-1 or under 24 out of 35 years (68 percent). As opposed to the Sprint and the Mile, where speed caves in, this race has been kind to those forwardly placed with only seven deep closing winners.
TURF: Look for closers here. Those with a finishing kick have won 28 of 35 years (80 percent). There have been just three wire-to-wire winners. European shippers have won 16 of the last 23 years and most of the Euro runners are closers.
Sprint most intriguing
The Breeders’ Cup Sprint is the most anticipated race over the two days. There are three legitimate superstars in the race: Mitole, Shancelot and Imperial Hint. All three have been sensational this year. What makes it more interesting is that all three have science fiction early speed. The race will be decided by what happens in the first quarter of a mile.
The Sprint has seen deep closers like Lit de Justice and Elmhurst upset the more fancied runners when the pace was too hot and early speed types collapsed late. Most players will be eyeing one of the three favorites here but don’t be surprised if someone like Hog Creek Hustle or Whitmore run right on by in the final 50 yards at a 25-1 or higher price.
Play of the Week
The final race on Friday at Santa Anita is a full field of optional claimers going seven furlongs on the dirt. Coil Me Home (No. 13) is the play here. He had blinkers removed two back and it allowed him to relax in the two starts without them.
There is a lot of speed in the race and he will be closing in from far back. He is 7 for 8 in the money at Santa Anita. Coil Me Home is 8-1 on the morning line.