Here’s a race-by-race preview of this Saturday’s annual running of the Breeders Cup, held again this year at historic Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky.
1 GATORIZE: One thing that I have learned with all my BC loses is that you just have to shoot for the prices. I’ll begin with a real long shot here in Gatorize. In her first start around two turns she produced a much better than looked effort after having a horrible trip breaking from post position #12 in the GR2 Alcibiades. She made a nice run on the turn, got stuck very wide and still managed to finish fifth beaten less then five lengths. That experience could only move this girl forward. A must use in the exotics as well as taking a shot with a win bet.
2 HER MAJESTY: Out of the same race as Gatorize. She was fractious in the gate and was bumped. Still ran a very good race and just may set off a big exacta.
3 OCTAVE: Future star for Todd Pletcher, this girl just runs everytime. Just may be able to sit back in a perfect spot and get the win at what could be a fair price.
1 CIRCULAR QUAY: This race has Pletcher written all over it as he looks to have them circled. Circular Quay got beat by the Doug O’Neill trained Great Hunter last time in the BC futurity at Keeneland on the Polytrack. Now they meet at Churchill where Quay is a perfect 2 for 2.
2 SCAT DADDY: This colt looks to be improving with distance. Rated beautifully last time when winning the GR Champaign going a flat mile at Belmont.
3 KING OF THE ROXY: Is the other Pletcher in here? This guy also looks on the uptick and is not without a shot.
FILLIE AND MARE TURF
1 WAIT A WHILE: Just another Pletcher and this girl has never lost on the grass. She may not be this good, but I think with Ouija Board and Gorella in the lineup you just may get the right price on an undefeated turf horse.
2-OUIJA BOARD: Won this event in ’04 and looks in top form coming across the pond. This mare is nothing but class and would be no surprise.
3 GORELLA: Is just that. Rounds out my top three. This filly will be storming down the lane in the stretch, but must stay clear to get up. Only drawback is that the one time she ran here was a result out of the money.
4 MY TYPHOON: Long shot is a perfect 2-for-2 at Churchill. If able to go this distance, she will be a factor at a price.
1 KELLY’S LANDING: I am shooting for the moon in the Sprint. Will take a shot at 30-1 here. He is not fast enough to win this race, but that’s how you get a monster payoff. Kelly did run his best race at this track and distance when winning a GR3 last June. He just may get the perfect setup if the speed collapses.
2 BORDONARO: Can blaze and has won 9-of-12. He will battle it out with Henny Hughes. You never know, they both could be there at the wire. The price on either will be to low for a punter like me.
3 SIREN LURE: Super trainer Art Sherman has turned this guy into a superstar since he got him back in 2005. He never runs a bad race and will be flying late at what should be an OK price. He should be part of the tri, if not the win end.
BREEDERS’ CUP MILE
1 ARAAFA: Super Euro has super connections. Who wouldn’t come this far if they didn’t think they could win? This guy is nothing but class.
2 ARAGORN: This could be an AA exacta. This 4yo just loves this distance and should be no less then second for BC super trainer Neil Drysdale.
3 MIESQUE’S APPROVAL: Long shot special ran huge in win here at CD back in July. Just might get there at a big price with a perfect trip.
4 BADGE OF SILVER: The ice cold Bobby Frankel will try and get this guy to go wire to wire. If unattended look out.
1 FLEET INDIAN: Will be the chalk, but I just can’t beat her on paper. I’ll just my use her in some pick threes and single her.
2 ROUND POND: One of two long shots that I will use in the exotics. This girl is much better than her 20-1 early line. This one just could surprise.
3 LEMONS FOREVER: Ran her all time best here at this distance when coming from dead last to get up at 47-1 in the KY Oaks GR 1 here in May. Could lightning strike in the same spot twice? A big long shot special.
4 BALLETTO: Has plenty of runnerup finishes, but did almost beat Indian last time out. Must use in the second, third and fourth slots in the exotics.
1 ENGLISH CHANNEL: Is one tough nut and will be very hard to beat in this race. He likes this course with an all time best back in May when beating the second choice Cacique.
2 CACIQUE: Never been this distance, but will be on or near the pace throughout. He should be able to stay clear of any trouble. He and Channel could be on the line together.
3 HURRICANE RUN: Top Station Casinos Handicapper Billy O has made this guy his best bet on the card. A distance specialist and only needs to take to the CD turf course to get the job done. Is this the trifecta — Channel, Cacique, Run ?
4 RUSH BAY/SILVERFOOT: These two big longshots are course specialists and should be used in tri’s and super, Rush Bay is 3-1-0 in four starts on this course. Silverfoot has never lost here on this turf course going a perfect 4-0.
1 GEORGE WASHINGTON: How can you buck Bernardini? Well, you just go up to the window and bet on GW. This winner of the GR Queen Elizabeth has never run on the dirt. So why is he entered in this spot by top Euro trainer Aidan O’Brien? Don’t know but I am always willing to take a shot at an even money horse.
2 PREMIUM TAP: Now my super long shot special Premium Tap. Kent D just butchered this guy last time out and now he gets Prado, who won with him in the past. Look for a big time run with this guy and maybe he will light up the tote just like in the GR 1 Woodward when going off at 31-1.
3 BERNARDINI: Will he be one of the best of all time? This race could tell a big story for him.