Breeders Cup Friday by Andrew Calvano (@SJHorseReport)
November 3rd, 2017
Race 6 (BC Juvenile Fillies Turf, G1, Mile on Turf)
Post Time: 2:25PT / 5:25ET
Selections: 11 – 13 – 1
#11 Rushing Fall (7/2) Tough to start off with a low price on the biggest weekend of racing, but in these spots, you need to make opinions count. This one is just much the best in here and is lengths better than these horses. These connections won this race last year with New Money Honey, and trainer Chad Brown has won this race three times. This filly out of More Than Ready went for nearly four times her stud fee at Fasig Tipton last summer and should soar above the investment after today. Ran a very, very impressive sheet number in her debut, and followed that up with a STRONGER number in the Jessamine over soft ground at Keeneland. The pace should set up just perfect for this one. #13 Juliet Capulet (12-1) This Euro invader will be generously OVERLOOKED in the wagering as the O’Brien pair is expected to make significant money off the bat to start the Breeders Cup. I’m hoping this one can get near 15-1, MAYBE even 20-1, but I doubt the latter very much. I’ve watched this one’s last four replays, and I can tell you that this one has some serious poise. Perfect ability to stalk and rate, and make one run. Last out in the G2 Shadwell Rockfel, this one was very game on the stand-side rail and held off a very well meant runner-up. Her sheet line is improving, in a way that you like to see out of progressing euros. First turn will come up quick on this one, but Dettori will let the speed to the outside of him go, and then settle. Jockey has a few races under his belt this week.
#1 Best Performance (12-1) This one seems to be a head-scratcher for most, but I think you can find some reasons to like this filly, and try to get her rolling in some plays. First off, this one has one of the most consistent races than anybody else in this field. Broke her maiden at first asking, and then was set to face some much tougher fillies along the way to Saratoga. Ran second in back to back starts, behind some of the best performances we’ve seen on the NY scene from 2yo fillies. They laid this one up, but her in a VERY competitive turf race at Kentucky Downs back in September had a BRUTAL trip but was flying late, making up a ton of ground. The winner coasted that day, getting away with an easy lead, and clearing. Last time out in the Miss Grillo, she saved ground, made one big run late, but it wasn’t enough. That was a VERY slow pace that day, and that will not be the case here. This one will use her tactical speed, strategically save ground on the rail, and look for a running room late. First-time Lasix for the daughter of Broken Vow.
Race 7 (BC Dirt Mile, G1, Mile on Dirt)
Post Time: 3:05PT / 6:05ET
Selections: 2 – 8 – 5
#2 Giant Expectations (12-1) Let’s get our first big price of the day home here with this son of Frost Giant that has been visually impressive this year. Ran a lot of good maiden races last year as a 3yo, but faced a ton of monsters; Ten Blessings, American Freedom, Arrogate, etc. This one came to New York to pick up some nice wins and some bonuses as an NY-Bred, and then came back here to campaign. Ran a nice race going a mile, had a rough trip behind a speed horse that is entered here as well. Won the Pat O’Brien impressively and came back with a really nice number. Last out, was EXTREMELY fractious going into the gate, and ran the same. I tend to be wary of horses stretching out for this race, but I love the value I’m getting, and I see a bit of a pace meltdown up front. If I’m playing this from a horizontal perspective, I’m going to spread a bit here, as I think the favorites are vulnerable. #8 Accelerate (7/2) This is one of the most consistent horses running this weekend, and I believe he gets some class relief in this spot. Last time out in the Pacific Classic, ran a nice number behind much better horses. This one should be closer to the pace than my top pick, which makes me think he gets the first jump, and rallies home. He is 3 for 4 on this track and has yet to miss the board going the distance. #5 Awesome Slew (12-1) Two turns might not be what this one wants, but I like the numbers I’m seeing from this horse, and I think he can sneak in underneath. Starting back to the day before Kentucky Derby Day, this one came from the CLOUDS to get beaten a neck by Limousine Liberal who was alone on the front end, and on the best part of the track. They threw this one in the Met Mile and ran a distant fourth behind “much better” if you will, that also land here. He was very wide that day and never seemed comfortable. Wasn’t beating Mind Your Biscuits three back, and wasn’t beating Drefong two back. Last out in the Ack Ack, won impressively going the distance, but only one turn. Ran a very good sheet number, and beat the runner-up who came back to win last out. Some questions go along with this one, but I don’t think he will be as far back as he usually is, and should be in a position late to pick up some pieces
Race 8 (BC Juvenile Turf, G1, Mile on Turf)
Post Time: 3:50PT / 6:50ET
Selections: 4 – 6 – 2
#4 Catholic Boy (12-1) St. John’s Grad, you know I have to go with this one. In all honesty, this one will be up against it today, but I see this one holding AMAZING value. In these types of races, its all about being confident, and shooting your shot. All it takes is one race, so believe me, I’m not playing off names here. This one debuted at Gulfstream during the summer when NO ONE is down there. Still, this LaPenta horse goes off 5-1 and wins with authority. They were confident enough to bring him right to Saratoga, and throw him in a G3 race going a bit longer, against some other tough ones. This one saved ground on the rail, and came out of a cannon, and rode by a handful of good horses, and a next out winner. This one improved eight points on the sheets, and significantly from a buyer perspective. This one comes in well rested, and is one of the FEW that had a nice workout over the turf course here this week. Manny Franco looks to shine in the big spot, but anyone from New York can tell you that he has been such an impressive rider this year. I think this one is an overlay, sits the perfect trip, and rallies. Must use. #6 Masar (9/2) is one of the lightly raced euros in here but is rumored to be very lively. Has the pedigree to go long, and has some good races behind him in Europe. Ran a very nice race at Ascot, and lost to September who you can watch in the sixth race today. Won a nice G3, running an 8 on the sheets, and did so professionally. Last out, was running late, and lost to Happily, who is supposed to be ready to roll (but I’ll take my chances) in the sixth race as well. If either of those O’Brien horses wins there, this one may be an upgrade. Will take to the harder ground today, and gets the lasix. #2 Untamed Domain (8-1) I was at Saratoga the day this one broke his maiden, and the word was out. This one won impressively and ran a very good race stretching out to that long distance for the first time. I don’t remember the statistic, but it was something along the lines of Motion 2 for 50 with Maiden Special Weights, 2yo, going short to long, on the grass for their second start. This one made that go from 4% to 6%. This one got a tough trip in the G3 With Anticipation behind my top pick here but rallied from last to third. Galloped out really nicely as well. Won the G2 Summer up at Woodbine last time out running a 9 on the sheets. Her dam, Ciao was a good runner who ran an 8 as a 2yo, so there is some room for this one to improve. Connections are high on this one, and I expect the trip to be saving ground and making one run. They have arguably the best jockey in the country aboard right now, and you’ll get a good price.
Race 6 (BC Distaff, G1, 1 1/8M on Dirt)
Post Time: 4:35PT / 7:35ET
Selections: 2 – 5 – 7 –
#2 Stellar Wind (5/2) This one goes out with a bang today and leaves the crowd cheering. This one has done nothing wrong in her career except run behind freaks. Dating back to this race TWO YEARS AGO, she was involved in a long inquiry against StopChargingMaria, which eventually did not go in her favor, making her the second best by a neck. She loses her next out to Beholder, then turns the tables on her twice in a row. They meet again in this race last year, when she broke in the air, which eliminated her from the race. She has rattled off three wins this year, including the Clement Hirsch over this track. She is a perfect 3 for 3 at Del Mar, and should get the best trip of them all.
#5 Elate (3-1) I don’t think there has been more buzz on one horse for the past two weeks than this one. She is coming from the east coast after two very impressive wins in the Alabama, and the Beldame. Three back she has beaten a head against Abel Tasmen in a questionable stretch run. This one will sit right off the early speed to her outside, and pounce turning for home. Bill Mott has been heating up back home and is very confident in this one. I’ll use this one and my top pick to close out the Pick 4 today and start the weekend right. Could this stretch duel top last year’s Distaff? #7 Paradise Woods (9/2) Won the Santa Anita Oaks impressively this year and was pounded in the Kentucky Oaks where she couldn’t run by herself and that just meant trouble. She blazed through the fractions and was too tired the second half of the race. Tired maybe too nice of a word. She took some time off for the G3 race here in August, and stumbled at the break, eliminating her right off the bat. She crushed holders last time out in the Zenyatta, only against three other suspect rivals. She will be a major pace factor today, is much quicker than the other “speed” here so she will be setting the tone. She’s the one to catch coming home. My two picks need her to be softened up front a bit but are just better, and more experienced horses.
Pick 4 Plays:
Race 6, .50C Pick 4: 11 / ALL / 2,4,6,7,12/ 2,5 = $100
Race 6, .50C Pick 4: 1,2,6,7,10,11,13 / 2,3,6,8 / 2,4,6 / 2 = $42
Race 6, .50C Pick 4: 1,2,11,13 / 2,3,5,6,8 / 4,6 / 2,5 = $40
Race 6, .50C Pick 4: 11,13 / 2,3,5,6,8 / 4,6 / 2,4,5,6,7 = $50