The day is here. Day 2 of the Breeders' Cup brings the big show to town, with Zenyatta attempting to end her career a perfect 20-for-20. Goldikova attempts to become the first horse ever to win the same race three times, attempting the three-peat in the Mile. With a flurry of competitive fields, this day will have plenty of chances for a great payoff. Let's dive right in with the first Breeders' Cup race, the Juvenile Turf.
Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf - Grade 2 - 1 Mile - (turf)
The first BC race of the day brings together a evenly match field of thirteen. This blog does not have a great feel for this race at all. The very lukewarm selection is #9 Soldat. Last time out, he finished second as the favorite in the Grade 3 Pilgrim Stakes over a yielding Belmont turf course. Two good works in the interim and the feeling that he will improve with the return to a complete two turns. Some large prices on the morning line that catch the eye are #11 Rough Sailing and #12 Humble and Hungry. Rough Sailing returns to the turf after a failed attempt routing on the Poly in the Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland. The cut-back and the return ti turf interests this blog, along with the two steady works. With a pedigree that is very strong for the grass, he may sneak into the exotics. Humble and Hungry is interesting because his pedigree says two turns are not a problem and the presence of jockey Olivier Peslier, the rider of Goldikova, is a bit of surprise, since H&H is making his first start against winners. The best of the Euros appears to be #5 Master of Hounds. He has experience around a turn, and should be fine at the distance.
Master of Hounds
Rough Sailing / Humble and Hungry (trifecta bombs)
Breeders' Cup Sprint - Grade 1 - 6 Furlongs
This field of 12 comes in without a clear favorite, as the early and dominant leader Majesticperfection was lost to injury in September. This group has a wide variety of running styles.for everyone to have their favorite style represented. The 3-1 morning line favorite is #2 Girolamo. This son of A.P. Indy, who won the Grade 1 Vosburgh last out, is trying to give his sire a win at the shortest dirt race (6 furlongs) after winning the longest race, the Marathon (1m & 3/4) yesterday. He comes in third off the layoff and has worked well in the interim, but he will bet tossed from the win spot because he violates the "Three Furlong Rule", a cardinal sin for this blog. The choice is #7 Kinsale King. This son of Yankee Victor runs on the dirt for the first time, but did have a workout over it at the BIG Fresno Fair a few weeks back. Earlier this year, he won the Palos Verdes Handicap at Santa Anita, which he parlayed into a win in the Group 1 Dubai Golden Shaheen. He went abroad to the UK for two prestigious grass races. Off since July, he comes in fresh and may float higher than his 8-1 morning line. #1 Big Drama is an ultra-game horse has not run since finishing second to a contender in the BC Dirt Mile Here Comes Ben. The cutback to 6 furlongs can only do good and the steady work pattern adds to the appeal. #5 Smiling Tiger has earned this blog's respect by being one of the few three year olds in the country to beat older, doing so twice in his last three starts. He also is making his first start on dirt, and popped a bullet work here last week. This blog is taking a stand against #3 Wise Dan, who seems to have picked up some "steam" this week, but is making only his 5th career start.
Smiling Tiger /Riley Tucker
Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint - Grade 2 - 5 furlongs - (turf)
This race was quite literally impossible to figure out for this blog. The horse who we had hoped to pin our hopes on, #1 Chamberlain Bridge, popped an abscess on his foot last week and missed his last work. That does not bode well for him in this race, and he no longer the pick. Instead of offering analysis, this blog will just point out a longshot in #13 Tropic Storm. The reason we point out this horse is that the cutback in distance and the abundance of speed in the field lead this blog to believe that if he can get over into a decent spot down the backstretch, he may be able to hang on for a share. The "if you put a gun to my head" selection is #9 Rose Catherine, because of her undefeated record at the distance.
Live Horses: (not enough conviction to make them selections)
Rose Catherine, Tropic Storm, Silver Timber, Unzip Me, Bridgetown
Breeders' Cup Juvenile - Grade 1 - 1m & 1/16th
This race has the two big names from the east coast who have gathered all the headlines, #2 Boys at Tosconova and #7 Uncle Mo. These two have both put in breathtaking efforts in the most recent starts and deserve to be the first two choices in the betting. Both stretch out to two turns for the first time today, but neither should have a problem with the distance. Uncle Mo is a pure speedball, and seeing how he reacts to pace pressure is the main question with him. 'Boys' must overcome a two month layoff, but has actually passed a horse, a rare thing in this field. These two will hopefully cause the price on #10 Jaycito to climb higher than the 8-1 morning line. This son of Victory Gallop has already won going two turns (in the Norfolk), but must overcome the 1 for 18 record on the board for horses coming out of the Norfolk running in the BC Juvenile when it is held at Churchill Downs. These three are the only ones this blog feels can win.
Boys at Tosconova
Breeders' Cup Mile - Grade 1 - One Mile - (turf)
The first of the two horses attempting to win their third Breeders' Cup race is the deserving favorite and the wonderful mare #10 Goldikova. She comes in fine fashion, winning the Grade 1 Prix de la Foret against males at Longchamp. She is ultra game and there is no rela chink in her armor, Unless something unforeseen happens, she looks like a very strong candidate to make history. This blog;s crazy longshot is #8 Get Stormy. If for some reason the mare does not fire, Get Stormy looks to get a perfect trip behind speedball #9 Sidney's Candy. Whether he is good enough is completely other story, but at a healthy number, he is worth a shot.
Paco Boy (who has been chasing Goldi all summer)
Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile - Grade 1 - one mile
This race took a hit when probable post time favorite #8 Crown of Thorns went down with an injury on Friday. Favoritism will either fall to #5 Here Comes Ben or #6 Gayego. This blog is going to take a chance with the horse just to their outside, #7 Thiskyhasnolimit. "This" has been running effectively at two turns, but has always stuck this blog as a one-turn miler. The only other time h did this, he won the Grade 3 Iroquois on this very track. He has worked nicely in the interim and will probably go off at or near the 10-1 morning line. The morning line favorite #10 Morning Line is a horrible favorite, with only a single Grade 2 to his name. He appears to be a two-turn horse who cannot pass, and will be up against it.
Here Comes Ben
Breeders' Cup Turf - Grade 1 - 1m & 1/2 (turf)
The big question surround this relatively compact field of 8 is whether or not 2010 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe winner #6 Workforce will run or not. To this blog, it does not matter, as the selection either way is #7 Behkabad. He has run will over a surface with less give in it than hat the connections of Workforce are looking for and was well-bet in the Arc, losing by only 4 lengths with a spot of trouble. The #1 Champ Pegasus is interesting because he is the only on in the field who no one knows how truly good he is, since this is first trip outside of California. He should be on or near the lead, and this may give him a fighting chance with the lack of early speed signed on.
That leaves the Classic. But if you are a follower of this blog, you know exactly who is the selection, and who the one to fear is. (Hint, it's a she). But forhow I explain it, you will have to find out in my next post, which will be put up later this BC Saturday Morning. Good luck everybody!