2011 Breeder’s Cup World Championships
Churchill Downs – Louisville, Kentucky
Saturday, November 5, 2011, 2:00 pm Eastern ABC, 3:30 pm Eastern ESPN
In another article we previewed day one of the Breeder’s Cup with 6 races. Now, we will discuss the other 9 races and day two, which culminates with the Breeder’s Cup Classic.
Here is a list of the entries, jockeys, trainers, and post positions for day two. The Breeder’s Cup races start with race three.
Marathon – 1 3/4 Miles, Purse: $500,000
The Marathon is one of two BC races that are Grade II instead of Grade I. The quality of horses isn’t quite as good in the longest race on the card. Cease, a gelding, is a slight favorite. The biggest issue facing Cease is he has only run 6 career races when every6 other horse in the field has at least 12 starts. He has finished in the money 5 times though with 2 wins. He finished 3rd in his last start at Hawthorne last month. He has never raced at more than a 1 1/4 miles, so the distance could be a problem. Brigantin is coming over from Europe for this race and has two third place finishes in grade one 20 furlong races this year, but has never raced on dirt in his career. A.U. Miner placed third in this race last year, but has only 4 wins in 24 career starts. Giant Oak was the favorite in this race last year but was beaten. Eldaafer won this event last year, but has been inconsistent since then.
Juvenile Turf – One Mile, Purse: $1,000,000
Finale is a slight favorite in this race. The Todd Pletcher trained colt has 3 wins in 5 starts all in the last 3 on turf. Farraj is getting a lot of buzz. The Irish colt has 2 wins and 2 runner-ups in 4 starts. Caspar Netscher, State of Play, and Animal Spirits are also contenders in a wide open race.
Sprint – 6 Furlongs, Purse: $1,500,000
Big Drama won this race last year, but has only raced twice in 2011. He hasn’t raced since September and missed his last prep race with an injury. He has 11 wins in 18 career starts and is very dangerous if healthy. Some say Jackson Bend, trained by Nick Zito, is in the wrong event and should be in the dirt mile instead. He runs better at longer distances. Amazombie has four wins this year and will be dangerous. Apriority stumbled in his last two starts but was fantastic early in the season. He is 20/1 on the morning line odds, and could shock the field with a win.
Turf Sprint – 5 furlongs, Purse: $1,000,000
Caracortado is the favorite here, despite not being a turf sprinter. He has never had a race as this short a distance but he has plenty of speed. He has 8 wins in 17 career starts. Havelock has won 4 straight turf sprints and has 6 wins in 14 starts. Chamberlain Bridge won this race last year, and has 17 wins in 36 starts but only one this year. Broken Dream could surprise here.
Dirt Mile – One Mile, Purse: $1,000,000
Trappe Shot is a slight favorite over The Factor, trained by Bob Baffert. Trappe Shot has 6 wins in 11 career starts, but he hasn’t really beaten any top horses. The Factor has 4 wins in 7 starts. He faded down the stretch in his last start at Santa Anita in a Grade 1 stakes race. It was only 6 furlongs, so that doesn’t bode well for his chances here in the mile. The 2011 Preakness winner Shackleford is also in this race but he hasn’t won a race since then and needs a good run here to prove it wasn’t a fluke. Wilburn is coming off a win in the Indiana Derby, and could contend here as well. Tapizar will set the pace early. Tres Borrachos could be a nice long shot in this race.
Turf – 1 1/2 Miles, Purse: $3,000,000
The French filly Sarafina is the favorite here. Her last race was the Grade I Arc De Triomphe, and she was beaten badly. It was the first time she finished out of the money in 10 career starts. She has 6 wins. Midday has never run in this event before, but has run in the filly and mare turf the last 2 years. She finished 2nd in that event last year and has 9 wins in 22 starts. Sea Moon and and St. Nicholas Abbey could also contend. Dean’s Kitten is good semi-long shot pick here. Brilliant Speed ran in both the Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes in the spring.
Juvenile – 1 1/16 Miles, Purse: $2,000,000
Union Rags is the favorite in this top race for 2 year olds. He is perfect in 3 starts and was impressive last month winning the Grade I Champagne Stakes at Belmont. He will be difficult to beat, but Drill, trained by Bob Baffert and Creative Cause will challenge. Creative Cause beat Drill handily in last month’s G1 Norfolk Stakes at Santa Anita. Dullahan got his first win in the Breeder’s Futurity at Keeneland last month. Hansen and Daddy Long Legs could surprise here.
Turf Mile – One Mile, Purse: $2,000,000
Goldikova has won this race 3 years in a row, and is still the favorite but might be losing a step against younger horses. Goldikova has 17 career wins in 26 starts but only 2 wins in 2011. Gio Ponti finished second here, but he has 28 career starts, and is getting older just like Goldikova. Courageous Cat came in second here in 2009, and could contend again. Byword and Mr. Commons could surprise if the favorites falter.
Classic – 1 1/4 Miles, Purse: $5,000,000
Uncle Mo, trained by Todd Pletcher, won the BC Juvenile last year and looked like a Triple Crown contender but injuries kept him out the three races. He has 5 wins in 7 career starts, and is nearly unbeatable when on his game. He has never run a race this long though, so stamina could be an issue. his biggest competition will be filly Havre De Grace who has 8 wins in 14 career starts including 5 this year. Havre has won 5 of her last 6 starts. She came in third in two starts at this distance. She was impressive in her last start in the G1 Beldame last month at Belmont Park. Flat Out, So You Think, and Stay Thirsty are also contenders here. Rattlesnake Bridge could be a good payoff at 20/1 on the morning line odds.
It should be a great weekend of racing at Churchill with so many top quality horses, trainers, and jockeys making the trip to Louisville.
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