Breeders’ Cup Friday: Let The Two Best Days Of Horseracing In America Begin!

Featured, Sports and Bets — October 30, 2014 at 10:09 am by

Oh, the excitement, babes.  If you’re a horseplayer, and if you aren’t you should be, the Breeders’ Cup is the penultimate in horse handicapping.  The two days of World Class thoroughbred racing offers incredible wagering opportunities in packed races filled with incredible horses.  The prices on winning horses is always inflated due to the amount of cash being wagered world-wide and the muli-race and exotic pay-outs are huge and sometimes even life changing.  The Pick Six on Friday has a $750,000 guaranteed pool. The Pick Six on Saturday has a $2.5 million guaranteed pool.  The Pick Fours have $1.5 million pools on both days, and there are rolling Pick Threes all freakin’ weekend.  That’s a lot of ways to make a lot of dough- but you gotta pick ’em right, babes.

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The event itself is spread out over two days.  There are four Breeders’ Cup races on Friday and nine on Saturday in thirteen different racing divisions.  This year they are running at Santa Anita in Southern California.  The event switches location from year-to-year, but five of the last seven Breeders’ Cups have been at Santa Anita.  Deservedly so, the place is incredibly gorgeous (I attended the Breeders’ Cup there in 2008.) and the weather is almost guaranteed to be perfect.  (Thought there is a chance of showers there this Friday and Saturday.) Folks travel from all over the world to see these races and to enter their horses in them.  There are horses entered from France, England, Ireland, Chili, and even Hong Kong.  The total purse of the thirteen races is $23.5 million dollars.  This is some serious business, babes.

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The handicapping is an absolute challenge.  These horse aren’t at the Breeders’ Cup because they suck, and that means that upsets happen and happen often.  Finding a winner among a full field of quality horses isn’t easy, but the rewards can be big if you do.  In 2012 I only hit one Breeder’s Cup race.  It was the Filly and Mare Turf and I hammered a five year old mare named Zagora.  She had impressed the hell out of me earlier in the year at Saratoga and I thought she was ready to fire. She won at 9-1 odds. ($20.40)  I had a large win bet on her and I had her keyed in the exacta and the trifecta.  I had the $47 exacta five times and the $180 triple twice.  I cashed all of those tickets for over $1,000.  I didn’t hit one other goddamn race for the rest of the Cup, but I still ended the weekend on the plus side.  All you need is one to make a profit, but picking a few can be big.

To be completely honest, over the years I’ve been all over the place with the Breeders’ Cup.  There are times I’ve walked with some fat cash, never quite five figure cash, but fat cash, indeed. Those were fun days.  I’ve also lost every race.  Those days were still fun, just not as fun as the winning days. When I went to Santa Anita in 2008, I whiffed on every race, and I really didn’t give a shit- that’s how awesome it was there. The big pick four or pick six payout has eluded me so far, but that sure as shit won’t stop me from trying.

I can’t wait to watch these great athletes run.  These horses are the best of the best.  Some of the top ponies are missing the Cup this year, like two-time horse of the year, and defending turf mile champ, Wise Dan; the defending Turf champion, Magician; and the incredible filly Beholder.  But California Chrome, Tonalist, Untapable, Close Hatches, Secret Circle, Shared Belief, and a whole host of others are in Santa Anita and ready to roll.  The dirt is fast and the turf is firm.  Let’s go get ’em.

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Below are my win picks for Friday’s four races.  I’ve also thrown in some other betting options.  Take these for what you will.  Good luck!

Breeders’ Cup Friday: Santa Anita (Post for first Breeders’ Cup race is 5:25 EST)

Race 6: Juvenile Turf- Grade 1:  European invaders have dominated this race since its inception in 2007, and I see no reason to not to bet a Euro now.   The Euros dominate the lawn and they seem more polished at a younger age after facing tougher grass competition over the pond early in their early racing careers.  #4 Commemorative  is coming off of two straight wins on the lawn at the mile distance.  His last out he won a Group 3 as a 10-1 longshot running uphill at Newmarket.   Love  the fact that he’s improved every time he’s run. He absolutely belongs with these and the 8-1 odds make him even more appealing as a win bet.   Like the fact that he’ll be close to the leaders and will get first run on the firm Santa Anita yard.  Exactas and trips with the 5, the 7, the 9, and the 11.   Double 4,7/4,9 Would be great to start out with a cash.

Race 7: Dirt Mile- G1:  Everybody is on #1 Goldencents’ nuts. There’s good reason for this.  He’s the heaviest favorite of the day and he won this event last year in gate-to-wire fashion.  Goldencents is incredibly consistent, he’s got great early speed, Santa Anita has been playing fast, and he’s got the rail so he can get out quick and go to the lead all while saving ground.  But it’s just too cute.  No favorite has ever won this race since its 2007 inception.  Of course that could mean nothing, but I do think that someone, like Vicar’s In  Trouble or Fed Biz will go with Goldencents and challenge him on this fast track.  No way they just let ’em get away again.  That would set the race up perfectly for the #9 Tapiture.  An underrated 3 year old, Tapiture has banked a million bucks this year.  His last was a second to a freaking and loose Bayern.  It was also his first race back after a month and a half off, and with his subsequent works and handling by trainer Steve Asmussen, he could be sitting on a big run.  Notice Jockey Napravnik stays here over riding live longshot Vicar’s.  If Tapiture takes that step forward, he can nab ’em late off of a stalking trip.  Win bet.  Exactas with the 1, the 4, and the 8.  Boom.

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Race 8: Juvenile Fillies Turf- G1: The #2 Osaila will be my biggest play of the day.  Miss has won 3 out of her last four, has banked over $300K, and finished just over one length behind highly regarded Cursory Glance two back.  The only issue could be the mile distance but she distanced herself in last going seven furlongs uphill at Newmarket, so I’m not that concerned. (The final furlong at Newmarket is run uphill.)  She could even want the extra panel.  Euro invasion.  Box with the 14 Qualify in an exacta- she’s the main rival despite her shitty post.  3, 4 and 11 are all players too, but I’m taking a stand with my Euro miss.  I may even single Osaila in some Pick 3s and my Pick 4.  Boom or bust.

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Race 9:  Distaff- G1:  This may be dumb, but I’m not buying the #10 Untapable hype.  Star three year old filly is a huge threat for win honors here, but I think she peaked back in the spring.  When Asmussen put her against the boys in the Haskell she got throttled.  Nice win back but I’m not feeling her as a chalky win bet.  Her main rival, the #11 Close Hatches, is outside and coming off of a dull effort in the Spinster.  But she’s the best horse here and if she runs her race, she wins.  If I can get her at 3-1 I may take a stab.  Otherwise, I’m taking a flyer on some value.  I like a handful of horses in here to rate an upset glance, but my friend and esteemed CCW handicapper, Cliff B., has me steered towards the #4 Belle Gallantey.  This mare’s been around, at five she’s raced 43 times, but this year she’s become a pro, winning two Grade 1’s and earning $850,000 of her $1,100,00 in total earnings.  She’s tactical and can rate the leaders.  Popped a 103 Beyer last out and likes Santa Anita.  Risky.  May be an all race in the pick four if I feel the need to keep discounting the favorites.

Good luck!  We’ll have picks up for Saturday as well.


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