Submitted by National Race Masters on Friday, October 26, 2018 at 1:21 PM
National Race Masters Breeders Cup Report
Friday, October 26
WEST COAST INVADER, BOB BAFFERT, AMERICAN PHAROAH LEGACY JUST ONE OF MANY BREEDERS CUP JUVENILE STORIES
When the 2018 Breeders Cup opens up on Friday, November 2 it will be run at Churchill Downs for the first time since 2011.
This is no small note for Breeders Cup bettors because over the course of the last 6 years the Cup races have been run in Southern California for 5 of the last 6 years. From 2012 to 2014 they were contested at Santa Anita, ventured to Keeneland in 2015, returned to Santa Anita in 2016 and last year took place at Del Mar.
There will also be a considerable change in the format. In previous years Breeders Cup officials have toyed with the Friday Lineup in numerous ways. They have put all the distaff races for both juvenile fillies and older fillies and mares on the same day. They have put races that no longer exist on that day and have even moved the Dirt Mile back and forth.
This year the format changes again as all 5 Juvenile Breeders Cup races will be run on Friday while the 9 races for 3-year olds and up will be run on Saturday. Handicapping is handicapping so which day the races are run on has minimal impact. Though it is possible that a mindset which focuses on “development angles” and the history of those factors is at least uninterrupted from race to race.
The 5 races in order lead off with the addition of a 14th race this year….the BC Juvenile Turf Sprint. In order the 5 races are:
Juvenile Turf Sprint - $1 Million – 5 ½ Furlongs
Juvenile Fillies Turf - $1 Million – 1 Mile
Juvenile Fillies - $2 Million – 1 1/16th Miles
Juvenile Turf - $1 Million – 1 Mile
Juvenile - $2 Million – 1 1/16th Miles
BREEDERS CUP JUVENILE SHAPES UP AS LONGSHOT NORM
Now that Friday has been re-programmed to put all the Juvenile Races under their own spotlight, the feature of the day will be the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile…to be run at a mile and a sixteenth over the main Churchill Downs oval.
With the pre-entries now in, the connections of 15 two-year olds (14 will line up) look to continue the history of a race that has more than rewarded value players.
Over the last ten years only two favorites have won the race.
2017 – GOOD MAGIC - $25.00…Exacta $135.60…Trifecta $458.80
2016 – CLASSIC EMPIRE - $11.00…Exacta $39.40…Trifecta $289.40
2015 – NYQUIST - $11.40…Exacta $191.40…Trifecta $1,394.00
2014 – TEXAS RED - $29.80…Exacta $100.60…Trifecta $671.40
2013 – NEW YEAR’S DAY $23.00…Exacta $101.80…Trifecta $952.20
2012 – SHANGHAI BOBBY (Favorite) $4.60…Exacta $90.80…Trifecta $733.40
2011 – HANSEN $16.20…Exacta $46.20…Trifecta $223.60
2010 – UNCLE MO (Favorite) $4.80…Exacta $17.40…Trifecta $147.20
2009 – VALE OF YORK $63.20…Exacta $334.80…Trifecta $2,362.20
2008 – MIDSHIPMAN $9.20…Exacta $39.40…Trifecta $144.40
EXPECTED BREEDERS’ CUP JUVENILE PAYOFFS
JUST ONE RACE AMONG MANY
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TWO DAYS – Friday & Saturday, November 2 & 3 (14 Big Races)
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With those kind of payoffs awaiting a quick look at the 15 pre-entered juveniles for this year’s edition indicates more of the same high number payoffs we have seen almost exclusively in this race.
Keep in mind, these are still developing youngsters whose form often improves dramatically from last race to the next. Case in point was the 70-1 upset of the Grade 1 Breeders Futurity at Keeneland on opening weekend by KNICKS GO.
With Bob Baffert entering the race with GAME WINNER, a son of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, the trainer’s constant visibility with the likes of ARROGATE and this year’s Triple crown winner JUSTIFY will likely add to the money which makes Game Winner the post time favorite.
GAME WINNER’S triumph in the Grade 1 American Pharoah Stakes made it three-for-three to begin his career and there is no doubt the son of Candy Ride will be a formidable presence in the BC Juvenile on Friday. He returned with two solid drills, a half mile and 6 furlongs, since his 9/29 victory.
However, the race does not begin and end with the Baffert charge.
Chad Brown’s colt COMPLEXITY, a son of Maclean’s music has left all his competition in his wake with a dominant debut MSW win at 6 furlongs and then a front running blowout in the Grade 1 Champagne Stakes. He might not be bred for the 10 furlongs of the Kentucky Derby but he has more than enough speed to handle the 8 ½ furlongs of the BC Juvenile.
Also heading east from a last out second place effort in the American Pharoah Stakes id Jerry Hollendorfer’s GUNMETAL GRAY, who ran second behind GAME WINNER after bobbling at the start an gaining those runner up honors as the 3-1 second choice. Like Baffert’s youngster, this son of Exchange Rate has worked brilliantly at Santa Anita with three morning efforts since, including 6 furlongs last Saturday in a best of eleven 1:13 2/5.
Hollendorfer will also ship the Violence colt DUELING who was second to GAME WINNER when he rallied from off the pace in that one’s maiden breaker and broke his maiden at one mile vs special weights in his last. If you are a breeding bettor, you will have difficulty finding deeper blood than this guy as the sire Violence is a son of leading championship sire Medaglia d’Oro and the mare, Seattle Qui is a daughter of Seattle Slew.
Speaking of runners up, the Shug McGaughey trained CODE OF HONOR was a solid second behind COMPLEXITY in the one turn-one mile Champagne after stumbling at the start and closing in the 5 path through the stretch. The son of Noble Mission is by grand sire Galileo and is out of a Dixie Union mare so should have little issues with two turns and the added distance.
Another who should appreciate the distance is STANDARD DEVIATION. The son of Curlin, who is known as a sire whose sons and daughters generally develop as they race was a so-so third when he flattened out a bit in the lane after getting spun into the seven path in the Grade 1 two turn Breeders Futurity at Keeneland 4 weekends ago. The colt will face two rivals who bettered him in that race, the aforementioned KNICKS GO, who went wire-to-wire over a main track that has played mostly to speed throughout the meet and SIGNALMAN. Improvement from the Chad Brown trainee would not be a surprise.
As to SIGNALMAN, he might have been best in the Breeders Futurity as he was in tight at the 5/16ths pole and then bumped at the quarter pole, yet still rallied against the slow pace set by KNICKS GO. A son of General Quarters out of a Trippi mare he is more mile speed than stamina bred so with a good start might be closer to the pace this time.
It is difficult to know what to make of KNICKS GO. His upset win in the Breeders Futurity was such an improvement from his previous two stakes efforts, a well beaten third in the Arlington Washington Futurity and fifth in the Sanford Stakes at Saratoga that a case can be made for a bounce as much as for improvement. One thing appears apparent, he will not be allowed to dawdle along on a slow paced lead as he did in the upset.
Others of interest are the only two colts that have raced over the Churchill surface, MR. MONEY, a Goldencents youngster who broke his maiden at the BC Juvenile distance here in his most recent and TIGHT TEN. The latter is a Steve Asmussen trained son of Tapit who was bumped at the start and checked mid-race before yielding to the winner and finishing second in the Iroquois Stakes here in mid-September, also at the BC Juvenile distance. The colt has turned in two straight bullet 5 furlong drills over the CD surface, including a best of 34 work in :59 3/5 this past Sunday.
Another who might be somewhat ignored, but shouldn’t be is MIND CONTROL. The son of Stay Thirsty was a sharp winner of the 7 furlong Grade 1 Hopeful Stakes on closing day at Saratoga and then was a scratch from an intended start in the Breeders Futurity due to an elevated temperature. The colt has worked solidly since, including a 6 furlong drill in 1:13 4/5 at Monmouth last Saturday.
Completing the field are TOPPER T, who is now in the barn of Bill Mott after finishing second in the 75K Shakespeare Stakes at Canterbury last time, TROPHY CHASER, who was a bland no-effort 5th in the Champagne Stakes in his last and WELL DEFINED, who steps up after drawing clear to win the restricted Florida Stallion In Reality Stakes at Gulfstream in his most recent.
DERBY DATE, who was a well beaten 5th at 48-1 in the Breeders Futurity is on the AE list.
The Breeders’ Cup Juvenile closes out the all-juvenile 5 race Breeders Cup lineup for Friday and you can bet that out National Race Masters experts will have constructed numerous winning returns by the time we reached this finale on the day’s schedule.
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