Looking for 2023 Breeders’ Cup exotic wagers? Gaming Today has your Breeders’ Cup exacta, trifecta, and superfecta picks for the 1 1/4-mile Classic on Saturday from Santa Anita Park.
The 12-horse field is definitely top-heavy — well, a little less so with the second-favorite scratched — so don’t consider us cowards if many of these are chalky as a protein drink. The idea is to win, right?
Bob Baffert-trained 3-year-old Arabian Knight highlights the field and comes in as a morning line 3-1 favorite after the post draw on Monday. Arcangelo, the winner of the Belmont Stakes in June might have assumed the favorite status if not for some questions about his health and a less-than-ideal starting spot on the rail. Those questions were obviously well-founded, as he was scratched on Tuesday.
White Abarrio and Ushba Tesoro also seem like solid inclusions in any exotic wagers, but from there it gets murky. But at the same time, that’s where the value starts, with scores of horses coming in at odds of more than 10-1 early in the week.
Breeders’ Cup classic horses 2023: Post positions, odds, and overview of field
Gaming Today’s 2023 Breeders’ Cup Exacta, Trifecta, and Superfecta Picks
Exacta: Arabian Knight, White Abarrio
Trifecta: Arabian Knight, White Abarrio, Ushba Tesoro
Superfecta: Arabian Knight, White Abarrio, Ushba Tesoro, Zandon
Breeders Cup 2023 Exacta Picks
Arabian Knight Monday workout courtesy: Breeders Cup
Exacta: No. 12 Arabian Knight (3-1), No. 3 White Abbario (4-1)
Bob Baffert-trained 3-year-old Arabian Knight figures to be the main obstacle here. The 3-1 morning line favorite comes in with wins in three of four starts, most recently in the Grade I FanDuel Racing Pacific Classic. He’s again under jockey Flavien Prat.
“It’s a long run to the turn. I would have liked to have been in the middle; you always like to be in the middle in Breeders’ Cup races. Whatever. We’re there,” Baffert said. “It’s a good field. I don’t worry about anything that is not in my control. I have won races out of horrible post positions I didn’t like and I have lost from some good ones. At least I didn’t get the rail!”
That’s where Arcangelo drew.
- Baffert has won the Classic a record four times and finished runner-up three times.
- All four of those winners — Bayern (2014), American Pharaoh (2015), Arrogate (2016), and Authentic (2020) — won wire-to-wire as 3-year-olds.
- Arabian Knight has led from the gate in all three of his wins.
- Arabian Knight’s final workout on Monday was a bullet of five furlongs in 59 seconds.
Read more: Exacta wagering explained
Breeders Cup 2023 Trifecta Picks
Trifecta or Trifecta Box: No. 12 Arabian Knight (3-1), No. 3 White Abbario (4-1), No. 8 Ushba Tesoro (4-1)
White Abarrio entered as co-third-choice at 4-1 under jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. and coming off a notable 6 1/4-length triumph in the Grade 1 Whitney Stakes on Aug. 5. He starts from the third post.
Ushba Tesoro also entered as the third choice (4-1) with bettors likely remembering the colt’s run-off victory in the Dubai World Cup in March. That race, too, spanned 1 1/4 miles. The colt didn’t race for six months thereafter as trainer Noboru Takagi readied for this weekend and Ushba Tesoro signaled his readiness with a romp in Japan with jockey Yuga Kawada, who will bring him to the eighth post on Saturday.
Lock in Arabian Knight as the winner here.
Breeders Cup 2023 Superfecta Picks
Superfecta: No. 12 Arabian Knight (3-1), No. 3 White Abbario (4-1), No. 8 Ushba Tesoro (4-1), No. 2 Zandon (12-1)
The 4-year-old Zandon is conditioned by 16-time Breeders’ Cup winner Chad Brown and that has to mean something… right? Brown has never won the Classic, though.
Zandon has won three times in 13 starts — including Grade II Woodward Stakes at Aqueduct Racetrack over 1 1/8 miles and in the Grade I Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland in 2022 and finished in the money 11 times in 12 stakes. He’s never finished worse than fourth. That’s all we’re asking for on Saturday. Still, a reputation as an underachiever is likely to keep his 12-1 odds pretty juicy as the race approaches. This will truly have to be a day when Zandon puts it all together under jockey Frankie Dettori. That’s why he’s down here in exotic territory.
$1 Superfecta Key: Arabian Knight (Locked as the Winner), White Abarrio (Locked as Second), Ushba Tesoro, N0. 5 Derma Sotogake (20-1)
Derma Sotogake was supposed to be the dominant Japanese colt coming to America last year, but injury and poor performance left the 3-year-old colt an afterthought despite four wins in nine starts. There’s really not a ton in his resume right now to suggest this might be the spot, and questions about his stamina considering his breeding from sprinter Mind Your Biscuits remain. But in a field where the top is so heavy, Derma Sotogake might be worth a shot, especially because superfecta combinations can be played for pocket change and make for enjoyable and cheap sweat. This colt is the only remaining entrant to have competed in a Triple Crown race last year. He was sixth in the Kentucky Derby, his most recent race. I’ll stop before I talk myself out of this one.
Read more: Superfecta wagering explained