Well, it is that time of year for us horse racing fans. Outside of the Kentucky Derby, one of the major racing events we look forward to is the Breeder’s Cup. The Cup is a two day event featuring the best of the best in racing. The event brings a lot of drama, excitement, and beautiful horses to the world.
This year’s edition of the 2012 Breeder’s Cup emanates from Santa Anita Racetrack in Southern California,. Day one of the event airs on NBC Sports from 4pm to 8pm EST on Friday, November 2. On Saturday, November 3, day 2 of the event airs from 3:30 to 8:pm, and then coverage switches to NBC from 8-9pm (all EST). Evidently, the organizers and NBC want the Breeder’s Cup Classic in prime time.
The track is legendary as so many great horses have graced Santa Anita with their presence. Horses like Affirmed, Seabiscuit, Swaps, and lately, the lovely Zenyatta have demonstrated their greatness at Santa Anita. The track is gorgeous. My only regret when I was out in Los Angeles for Wrestlemania 21 is that I did not go to Santa Anita.
Well, that being said, I am going to give my readers a preview of the entire two day card by listing the race (not the entire field), and giving my opinion on the race, and who I like.
Day 1: Friday, November 2.
Juvenile Sprint (6 furlongs or 3/4 mile)
This is a fairly new race to the Breeder’s Cup. In last year’s inaugural edition of the race, the Bob Baffert trained Secret Circle won. Who will win this year?
Well, I am a bit apprehensive about any of the Juvenile races as the Breeder’s Cup is easing in a ban on Lasix, an anti-bleeding medication. Two year olds are not going to be able to use Lasix this year, and then the ban goes in for everyone next year.
Merit Man is the favorite here. He is undefeated. However, I like to go against the favorite.
My Pick: I admit that I am not all that great with the 2 year olds, but I will take a crack at this and pick the Bob Baffert trained Super Ninty Nine at 5-2. Long Shot Pick: Ceiling Kitty (GB) at 12-1.
Marathon (1 3/4 Miles)
I love the Marathon. It is a long distance race, and it is great seeing a race that caters to fans like me. I am an old timer who longs for the “good old days” when horses had endurance, and were able to carry weight. I am talking about the days when the Jockey Club Gold Cup which is run at Belmont, and was run at 2 miles. Way back then, horses carried weight at 138 pounds, etc.
The favorite appears to be Atigun. He is a pretty decent horse. Ken McPeek will have him ready as he is an awesome trainer.
My Pick: I am going with Jaycito at 6-1. He always puts in a great effort. I think he has a chance. He is owned by Zayat Stables (owner of Paynter, Bodemeister, and Fast Bullet). Bob Baffert trains him. Long Shot Pick: Juniper Pass at 30-1.
Juvenile Fillies Turf (1 Mile)
I am not too familiar with this particular field. The favorite is Sky Lantern (IRE) at 3-1
My Pick: I will go with Sky Lantern at 3-1. Long shot pick: Moonwalk at 20-1.
Grey Goose Juvenile Fillies (1 1/16 Miles)
This race is going to be awesome. We are going to see not one, not two, but THREE undefeated two year old fillies running in this race. They are Stonestreet Stables (with George Bolton) Dreaming of Julia, Kauai Katie (also owned by Stonestreet), and Executiveprivilege (owned by Mike Pegram & Co.). My apologies to LeBron James of course.
My Pick: Julia had to fight for her last victory at Belmont Park last time out. I am going to go with the Baffert trained Executiveprivilege at 2-1 for the win. Long shot Pick: Almost an Angel at 30-1.
Fillies and Mare Turf ( 1 & 1/4 Miles)
This race is pretty much a two horse race for me. Unless there is a HUGE upset, I think the race is between Marketing Mix, and The Fugue. In Lingerie could also be a factor. Two other horses to watch are Nahrain, and I’m A Dreamer.
My Pick: Marking Mix at 9-2. Long shot Pick: Star Billing at 30-1.
Ladies Classic ( 1 & 1/8 Miles)
Well, this is THE race of the two day event. I am being serious. This field is loaded with the top female runners. We have two undefeated champions in My Miss Aurelia (last year’s Breeder’s Cup Juvenile Fillies winner) and Awesome Feather (2010 Ladies Classic winner). We have the defending Ladies Classic winner, Royal Delta in this race. There are two other great fillies in Grace Hall, and Questing (GB) in this race as well.
I mean, this is the best field of greats I have ever seen in quite awhile. In the past few years, the female division has been a bit better than the male. The last three HOY winners, Havre de Grace, Zenyatta, and Rachel Alexandra have been female. It is just amazing.
My pick: Boy, this is a tough one. Head says Awesome Feather. Heart says My Miss Aurelia. Honestly, I love pretty much all the horses I mentioned. Oh what the heck. I am going with BOTH my head and my heart. Awesome Feather at 3-1. My Miss Aurelia at 4-1. Long shot pick: Class Included at 30-1
Day 2. Saturday, November 3
Juvenile Turf (1 Mile)
Again, I am not too familiar with juveniles, especially ones restricted to turf.
My Pick: Know More at 8-1. Long shot Pick: Brown Almighty at 20-1.
Filly and Mare Sprint (7 Furlongs or 7/8th of a Mile)
This race has some nice fillies in the field. I love Turbulent Descent. The defending champion, Musical Romance, is back. Switch is in this race. The big favorite is Groupie Doll at 1-1. Way too short a price for me.
My Pick: I am going with Turbulent Descent at 5-1. Long shot Pick: Bell of the Hall at 20-1.
Dirt Mile (1 Mile)
Well, the big horse in this race is 2011 Preakness winner Shackleford. He is a nice horse. I love watching him. Emcee and Jersey Town are two other horses to watch in this race.
My Pick: Shackleford should win this, but sometimes his quirks get in the way, so I am going with Jersey Town at 4-1. Long shot pick: Rail Trip at 10-1.
Turf Sprint (6.5 Furlongs or 1400 yards)
This is one of those races where I am going to just guess. The only horse I know is Mizdirection. The horse is owned by Jim Rome, the sportscaster. The horse’s name has nothing to do with Mike Mizanin, known by his ring name, “The Miz.”
My Pick: Mizdirection at 20-1. Long shot Pick: Starspangled Heat at 30-1.
Grey Goose Juvenile (1 1/16 Miles)
The two standouts for this field are Shanghai Bobby, and Power Broker. It will be interesting to see if the Lasix ban will help or hurt any horse in the field. Of course, the Kentucky Derby jinx will be put on the winner. Only one horse (Street Sense) who has won the Juvenile has gone on to win the Derby.
My Pick: Shanghai Bobby at 2-1. Long shot Pick: He’s Had Enough at 30-1.
Turf ( 1 1/2 Miles )
The field includes some good turf horse like Point of Entry, Treasure Beach (GB), and Little Mike (2012 Arlington Million winner). I am not sure the Europeans like Treasure Beach (Great Britain) will like the turf though.
My Pick: I like Point of Entry at 3-1. Long shot Pick: Kindergarten Kid at 30-1.
XpressBet Sprint (6 Furlongs or 3/4 Mile)
Nice group of sprinters in this race including, Trinniberg, Justin Philip, Fast Bullet, and Coil. The race is basically the field of horses gets out of the gate as fast as they can, and make a mad dash to the finish over 6 furlongs. I love the sprint races. The favorite in this race is Amazombie.
My Pick: I would not be surprised if Amazombie takes the race. He has been the most consistent sprinter in the country. However, I like Coil in this race at 5-1. Long shot Pick: Justin Philip at 20-1.
Mile (1 Mile)
This race has a nice field. The obvious favorite is Wise Dan. He has been awesome this year by winning on dirt, polytrack, and on grass. I have seen him race in person a couple of times. He lost both times in the Shadwell Mile to one of my all time favorites, Gio Ponti. This year’s edition of the race, “Dan” won it. Gio Ponti’s retired to stud, so Dan caught a break.
Seriously though, Dan has had a great year. I thought he (and filly Royal Delta) should have gone in the Classic. Oh well.
The other horses to look out for are the returning 2011 Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom. The poor horse has been dealing with injuries. Great Britain’s Excelebration, and Mr. Commons are also a threat to Wise Dan.
My pick: Wise Dan at 9-5. Long shot Pick: Wilcox Inn at 30-1.
Classic (1 1/4 Miles)
Well, this is the grand finale. It is also pretty bittersweet. The only three year old from the 2012 Triple Crown series to make it to the Breeder’s Cup Classic is Alpha. What a sad state of affairs for this year’s three year old. I hope next year’s bunch will be better. I was so looking forward to seeing Union Rags, Bodemeister, I’ll Have Another (as Triple Crown champion presumably), Paynter , etc.
My pick: This race is going to be tough. I still think the Ladies Classic is going to be the best race of the two days, but this is a very nice field. I am going to go with Mucho Macho Man at 8-1. Long shot Pick: Handsome Mike at 30-1.
Well folks that is my preview for the 2012 Breeder’s Cup. I should add that I got the odds from http://www.breederscup.com/races as of this writing.
Have a great time watching the two day event and good luck at the windows.
Terri Bey currently blogs for CamelClutchBlog.com about Wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture related subjects. Her work has appeared in BleacherReport and for F4WOnline.com. Terri can be found here at Facebook- http://www.facebook.com/TerriBey and at Twitter- http://www.twitter.com/giopontifan
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