Waldgeist out to reverse Arc result
IT’S the Breeders’ Cup at Churchill Downs today with the action starting at 4pm on both At The Races and Racing UK.
There are plenty of good trends to help us pick a few winners on what’s arguably the best Flat racing day of the year.
We’ll go through the card and let the stats narrow the fields down. 4.00: Filly and Mare Sprint
Three-year-olds have a shocking record in this with four and five-year-olds having much the best of it.
You need to have been in the first three last time out and a good recent run in a Grade 1 race has been a pointer.
That makes MARLEY’S FREEDOM a confident choice after her win at Saratoga last time out. 4.38: Turf Sprint
Again a first-three finish last time has been a factor, with all age groups winning. A break of four weeks
or more is another positive. A win over the specialist 5.5f trip is something else to look for.
STORMY LIBERAL has won over 5f and 6f so has plenty going for him. 5.16: Dirt Mile
Going well in a Grade 1 or Grade 2 race last time out is important and you want to have run in the past 42 days. That gives outsider ISOTHERM a decent chance of sneaking into the frame after a good run at Santa Anita last time out. 6.04: Filly And Mare Turf
This is the first highlight from a European perspective with a couple of travellers going over with high hopes.
A race within the past 45 days or so has been important as has a previous Group 1 victory. Interestingly, only one European winner of this scored last time out. The European winners were all threeyear-olds too. The Americans have won three of the four runnings of this at Churchill Downs, although a European has
placed each time.
A RAVING BEAUTY has a chance of keeping the prize at home at what could be rewarding odds. Wild Illusion looks the pick of the Europeans and can maintain the record of placing in this race at Churchill. 6.46: Sprint
Stick with last-time winners so that quickly cuts the field down to just three hopefuls. A Grade 1 win has been a good pointer too. A growing recent trend is for a rising star three-year-old to take this race so that gives PROMISES FULFILLED a chance at bigger odds than the other two contenders who won last time out. 7.36: Mile
A run within the past six weeks has been a big pointer for this with between four and six starts earlier in the campaign. European challengers need to have won a Group 1 race before. Given that the ground is likely to be soft on the turf course, POLYDREAM looks the one to be on.
She also has the excellent
record of European threeyear-old fillies on her side with Happily having good each-way claims too. 8.16: Distaff
Finishing in the top three last time has been important and, while older horses have won the past two, before that three and fouryear-olds had won 17 on the trot.
A Grade 1 winner is a plus, as is at least six runs earlier in the season. VALE DORI has every chance of maintaining the good recent record of older horses after winning a Santa Anita Grade 1 last time. A slight worry is the fact that she’s had just five runs this season but she comes from Breeders’ Cup king Bob Baffert. 8.56: Breeders’ Cup Turf
A run within the past eight weeks has been a must, although a win last time out has not been a positive. Horses aged four and five have the best record, with a victory at Grade 1 level important. Europeantrained horses have a much better record than the
locals. Favourites have a poor record too.
Enable looks hard to beat but there are a couple of trends against her, namely the shocking record of favourites with only one win in 14 and her success last time out. Finding something to beat her is not easy but WALDGEIST has stronger claims on trends. He ran well behind Enable in fourth in the Arc and has form on soft ground. 9.44 Breeders’ Cup Classic
Finishing in the first two last time is a big pointer, as is a victory at Grade 1 level and a success over 1m1f or further.
Bob Baffert has trained three of the past four winners with only one of the past 10 winners hailing from outside the USA.
This hasn’t been a race for longshots with only one Classic scorer going off at a double-figure price.
Given Baffert’s record, MCKINZIE has to be a major player. He won well in Grade 1 company last time out over 1m1f and looks open to further improvement.
Soft ground form: Waldgeist can foil Enable bid