HALLANDALE BEACH, FL, October 28, 2022 – Here it is, the last chance to pad your Breeders’ Cup stash.
The focus will be on the Belmont at the Big A’s final weekend and the last Saturday program in Lexington prior to the biggest betting dance of all.
We would love to make a small score in Saturday’s run-up to Breeders’ Cup XXXIX but the form in these races we’re considering are all over the place–which also can be the good news.
The races are a mix of horses who are getting good at the right time, or the more accomplished runners who may, or may not, be over the top of condition. Alas…
BELMONT AT THE BIG A
AWAD STAKES Race 4
The Skinny: Only seven are entered but we’ve left four open—and maybe I’m forgetting another. Either way, this figures to be a good betting race. Two year olds going long on grass can be that way…
The two we’ll focus on in 8.5 furlong once-around are 2-Sendero (5-1) and 4-Freedom Trail (3-1). The former was ridden by Jose Ortiz to victory in a Colonial sprint as if he knew he was on the best horse, restricted to Virginia-breds. He was. Today he goes long with Prat, never a bad thing.
Freedom Trail impressed because in his two-turn maiden win it seemed he always had a lot two do. He raced greenly after entering stretch 6-7 wide, lugging in but made up ground, showing class late to eke out the win. Irad in the boot today.
WORTHY FAVORITE: Freedom Trail
EARLY LINE VALUE: Sendero
STRAIGHT WAGERS and EXOTICA: Exacta Box 2-3-4 [Dandy Handyman, 4-1]. Exacta Box: 2-4-6 [Let’s Go Big Blue, 5-2]. STRAIGHT WIN is Price dependent: 2 or 4.
PUMPKIN PIE STAKES Race 8
The Skinny: It’s not difficult identifying the public’s choice: 2-Boston Post Road (9-5) has posted the fastest Thoro-Graph figure two back and goes for Brown/Brant/Prat team.
We, however, will take any value available with 5-Glass Ceiling (5-2), who is dropping after a steady diet of graded company, is a five-time winner at the trip, owns four South Ozone Park wins, and is reunited with winning rider Dylan Davis.
WORTHY FAVORITE: Boston Post Road
EARLY LINE VALUE: 4-Dr. B (5-1)
STRAIGHT WAGERS and EXOTICA: Exacta Box 2-4-5. Rolling Doubles 2-5 with 4-Jaxon Traveler (7-2) in the G3 Bold Ruler. Taking Glass Ceiling to win at 5-2 or greater.
BOWMAN STAKES Race 6
The Skinny: This juvenile stakes is ungraded and has drawn but a field of seven, yet this is another potentially good betting race.
We’ve got three possibilities at the top of the ticket and a price shot, maybe two, as possible board-hitters. 2-Sir Lancelot (3-1) is 2-for-2 winning by an aggregate 14 3/4s over dirt and a stakes on All-Weather. 3-Quick Hammer (5-2) won a fast race in debut for Brad Cox in New York, and this is a promising spot for stakes credentials.
5-Super Chow (5-1) is a super-fast Florida flyer with plenty of experience, 7-weeks spacing into this, and a strong half-mile from the gate over the track. 6-Hurricane J (8-1) is forward looking and 2-for-2, improving with blinkers 4-Jeremy’s Jet (30-1) has been victimized by tough trips of late.
WORTHY FAVORITE: Sir Lancelot
EARLY LINE VALUE: Super Chow
STRAIGHT WAGERS and EXOTICA: Exacta Box 2-3-5. Trifecta and Superfecta Wheel 2.3.5 // 2.3.5 // 184.108.40.206.6 // 220.127.116.11.6. Super Chow to win at 4-1 or greater.
G2 FAYETTE STAKES Race 9
The Skinny: Shug McGaughey at his best with 4-First Captain (6-5). I have no way to beat him. He has been developed patiently, with great spacing, and has improved since blinkers were added three back and his incremental figures improvement is an indication that there’s probably more there-there.
1-West Will Power (4-1) won his prep for this over the track, has run fast enough, draws the pole with Rosario, has a (2) 1-1-0 slate at the trip, and worked strongly with mate 3-Fulsome (3-1) for Cox at his Churchill base.
WORTHY FAVORITE: First Captain
EARLY LINE VALUE: West Will Power
STRAIGHT WAGERS and EXOTICA: Straight Exacta: 4 // 1.3, exacta ticket 4-1. Exacta Key Box: 4 with 1.3. Straight Trifecta 4 // 1.3 // 1.3. Would take First Captain to win with no price restrictions.
Suggested multiple wagers are always at minimums available; straight wagers are in $2 units or greater
this is a live column that will be updated throughout the weekend
Ed Note: The current plan is to have BC Future Stars Friday posted Thursday and Championship Saturday posted on Friday