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Handicapping - Pedigree - History - Dosage

2023 Breeder's Cup - 45 Days Out



EARLY OBSERVATIONS & MUSINGS

 

BREEDERS CUP JUVENILE - Dirt

Post Time: 7:00 pm EDT

1-1/16 miles DIRT


City of Troy - Possible starter for either dirt or turf Juvenile races. Very telling was Aiden O'Brien's scratch out of the National Stakes from this past weekend. O'Brien did not like the change of the turf surface from Good to Yielding. This means that he wants this beast on a faster surface and could potentially foretell where his mind is at, if he indeed takes him along for the ride. City of Troy has a very big chance of entering a gate in this race. As far as quality, none compare for either Juvenile race.

Heartland - There is no doubt that Baffert holds an edge on his home turf, and we should be prepared to see a few of his starters. Even though he is banned from Churchill Downs for the Derby, nothing could stop his advantage, nor his ego. Heartland is a very well-bred Classic runner. His rear-running style makes him Baffert's ace up his sleeve if his other lead speeds fall short. This is a very good horse with high potential passed the 8.5f mark, but still has substantial inbred speed to compete under his optimum.


Prince of Monaco - Trained to stalk, Baffert will position him in an opportune spot, and he has the endurance to cover this track.


Mirahmadi - This Into Mischief colt stayed on to the wire behind the speedster Prince of Monaco after running a 44.75 half. Both trained by Baffert. Possible strategy allowed for the final placement of first and second in the Futurity. Mirahmadi can run the 8.5f on the lead on the Santa Anita track with his eyes closed, as long as it's within a more rational half. Should something backfire on the front, Heartland will be coming from the back to pick up the pieces either way.


Other potential contenders include Nutella Fella, Valiant Force, Fierceness, Raging Torrent.



BREEDERS CUP JUVENILE - Turf

Post Time: 7:40 pm EDT

1 mile TURF


City of Troy - The absolute single if entered on Turf. No questions asked. No second thoughts. No chance that any other can beat him on this surface. The dominant feature act of the entire first day of Breeder's Weekend. He will be Friday's Superstar.


Capulet - As if Aiden didn't have one well-bred son for consideration with City of Troy, tack on Capulet as well. Not only is he another son of Justify, but he is also out of a Galileo mare. Two extremely well-bred contenders from this barn, with City of Troy highly favored by the trainer. We will have to await the verdict on final race placement. Capulet will start in the Royal Lodge Stakes next.


Endlessly - Mike McCarthy's charge who kicked it into high gear in the 8f DelMar Juvenile Turf Stakes. This horse is undefeated in two 8f starts on the West Coast, which gives him home field advantage.


Vandeek - Must mention this undefeated speedy horse who just won the Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket. Undefeated sprinting type who has the stamina to compete with the best here. No plan has been set to ship him to America for the race, but if he does, he must be taken very seriously.


Other potential contenders include Carson's Run, Valiant Force, My Boy Prince, Iberian, Inishfallen, Al Musmak, Tok Tok, Indian Run.



BIG ASS FANS MILE

Post Time: 2:30 pm EDT

1 mile DIRT


Cody's Wish - Natural favorite, however, it will be the first time performing on the West Coast bias against those who live in the backyard. Vulnerable at this track.


Arabian Lion - A true puzzle. Exclusively trained at Santa Anita and DelMar but bombed both times he competed out there. Posts his best on the East Coast tracks.


Gunite - Another who will be testing his strength first time out west, however this guy has traveled abroad and at least was competitive. Unlike many who give Meydan a shot, Gunite's form as remained on the rise. Parx Dirt Mile will be very telling.


Il Miracolo - Very good distance for him, loves a fast track and beginning to come into his own. Ability on the Parx bias shows some advantage to shine here.


Algiers - Highly accomplished overseas runner who is not particularly built to conquer this race at all. Better chance at success if moved to the Classic.


Other potential contenders include Anarchist, Practical Move, Hoist the Gold, Bye Bye Bobby.



FanDuel MILE

Post Time: 4:30 pm EDT

1 mile TURF



Paddington - No word yet on this talented O'Brien trainee. He won his first six starts, four Group 1 races including the Irish 2,000 Guineas, St James's Palace Stakes, Coral-Eclipse and Sussex Stakes. His record puts them all to shame when kept at the mile.


Songline - Japan's newest pride in the form of a filly who has begun to master this distance on turf. Hit or miss with this girl though, but when she is on, she thrives at the mile. Could opt to go against the fillies as well.


Master of the Seas - Charles Appleby trainee who will not have anywhere near the type of competition that he saw in the Woodbine. No comparison to the quality that appears slated for this race, especially if Paddington comes. Plus, we'll have to play the waiting game with Luxembourg - if he's slated to come - and which Turf race suits him best.


Other potential contenders include Casa Creed, Exaulted, Inspiral, Triple Time, Tahiyra, Closing Remarks, Rogue Millennium, Ancient Rome, Annapolis, Du Jour, Victoria Road, Win Carnelian, Sauterne, Chaldean, Flight Plan, Mawj, Bathrat Leon, Conclude, Kinross, Brave Emperor.



LONGINES TURF

Post Time: 5:50 pm EDT

1-1/2 mile TURF


Equinox - NOT COMING - Well, the sad verdict is in. The Longines Best Horse in the World will not be part of Breeder's Cup weekend. His roster is now the Tenno Sho and then the prestigious Japan Cup. With a 5.5 million dollar (US dollars) payday for a win in the Japan Cup, the magnificent horse will remain in Tokyo. This is the best news that the other trainers could have ever hoped for.


With Equinox now a no-show, this will be an extremely difficult puzzle to untangle and the line-up, most likely, won't take shape til the bitter end.


Mostahdaf - Lanfranco Dettori on his farewell tour will use every inch of his talent to get this horse across the finish line first. Up in the air as far as which Turf race to contest. Mostahdaf ended Paddington's record of seven straight victories in the Juddmonte. Option is there for the Classic as well, but that's highly unlikely.


Auguste Rodin - Aiden O'Brien could saddle at least three stars for this race. Auguste Rodin, Warm Heart, and Bolshoi Ballet. Of major importance here is that O'Brien noted that Auguste's poor 10th place performance on 7/29 in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes was most likely due to the plane ride. He put Auguste on a boat for the 9/9 Irish Champion Stakes and the over-achieving superstar took first place. Something to look into. Does Luxembourg show up here as well?


Through Seven Seas - Mare who came within a neck behind the Monster Equinox in the Takarazuka Kinen and deserves high respect for that accomplishment. Through Seven Seas went off at 55-1 in that race - odds that will never be seen again after that performance. She left Japan for the Arc to face Ace Impact, Westover, Continuous and Hukum. All major talents with Ace Impact presumably strongest of all. Tough race this year.


Other potential contenders include: Gold Phoenix, Get Smokin, Up to the Mark, Spooky Channel, Warlike Goddess, Echt, King of Steel, Onesto, Win Marilyn, Place Du Carrousel, Shahryar, Junko, Fantastic Moon.



BREEDERS CUP SPRINT

Post Time: 8:00 pm EDT

6f DIRT


Echo Zulu - Could be one of the easier singles of the day, but there are some heavy hitters that she could face. Has posted one win in California and that just happens to be the 2021 Breeders Cup Juvenile Fillies at DelMar. One year later, she came in 2nd in the 2022 Breeders Cup Filly and Mare Sprint at Keeneland. Does she recapture that winner's circle in 2023 and does she go against the fillies or the boys?


Remake - Will need to take a long strong look at this Japanese invader if scheduled for the trip.


Elite Power - Serious speed with stamina to burn. Proven ability to travel but has never performed on a California bias. This is a very talented horse.


Other potential contenders include The Chosen Vron, Anarchist, Cogburn, Dr. Schivel, High Oak.



LONGINES CLASSIC

Post Time: 6:40 pm EDT

1-1/4 mile DIRT


Arcangelo - His breeding on the Santa Anita bias is a match made in Heaven.


Arabian Knight - In his element and proven successful at 10f going gate to wire. But he hasn't danced with Arcangelo yet.


Ushba Tesoro - A quiet monster from Japan. Phenomenal talent.


White Abarrio - A lot of interest around town for a horse who has never run on the West Coast. Unsuccessful at the 10f and bombed on a comp bias in the PA Derby. At the moment, not seeing the appeal of this one at all. Will continue to try to get myself back to pre-Kentucky Derby days but highly doubt that will be a successful endeavor.


Mage and Zandon - Hefty players coming from the rear in case of speed duels.


Other potential contenders include: Geaux Rocket Ride, Forte, Bright Future, Proxy, Defunded, Stilleto Boy, Senor Buscador, Slow Down Andy, Emblem Road, King of Steel

 

This year, the plan of attack will be geared more towards boxed exactas as opposed to superfectas. Don't get me wrong, I will still take my shot with my favorite type of bet, but the concentration will be on the top two or three with heftier exacta wagers.


After all of these years, I have finally learned that missing that super by one over and over again on Breeders Weekend demands a slightly different approach.


On Breeders Cup weekend, these gates are filled with the best in the world and some of these talented horses will inevitably be set with magnificent betting odds. The plan is to choose two or three, box them, and hope for the best odds to prevail. There are two races on the other hand, where I will not be boxing for a win spot. Single for the win in the Classic and the Juvenile, turf or dirt.


Handicapping Santa Anita is 100% easier than Keeneland. This year, the extra time invested so far should be worth it.


There are still many potential contenders across the globe that have not been placed yet, but the talk is out there. Been working harder than ever with the turf races. Researching several of the more gifted quiet players started months ago. Of course, as everyone knows, I usually steer clear of the filly races. That aspect will not change for this year as well.


Breeders Cup historical outcomes at Santa Anita (and other California tracks) has also been scrutinized. Sure to cross-examine that information several times over.


In depth research into charts and dosage figures, scales, balances, styles, bias preferences, etc., started over the summer break and will continue through to the bitter end.


The bias is fairly straight forward, however, not to be assumed. Each and every race results chart from September 29th through to November 2nd will be analyzed for exact bias tendencies. In search of specific patterns and advantages. How it runs in early afternoon and how it runs at the end of the day will also be inspected. This includes gate placement, breeding for that gate, leaders breeding, etc. No stone unturned.


We also have Parx Stakes races this coming weekend which highly aligns with Santa Anita. The outcome of these races will be imperative to dissect.


Unlike years past where I usually post analysis and picks 4 or 5 days prior, there will be a huge change in the timing. I will post a few articles leading up to the big day, however, the real analyses and final picks for these races will not be posted until the very last minute. I'm tossing the "Dirty Horse Password" altogether. It has never shielded theft in the past and I'm not dealing with it this year.


The sneaky vultures will inevitably break the perimeter, but it will be too late for them this year.


Arcangelo Work-Out

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