BREEDERS’ CUP PICKS- FRIDAY

Race analysis, with horses I feel are playable for the win or place spot. I’m in Portugal, so the times are in Lisbon time, for my own reference.

FRIDAY:

Juvenile Filles, 10:08 pm

* This race begins an absolutely brutal Pick 3 sequence that appears short on value and heavy on potential outcomes. The Juvenile Fillies race showcases two horses with tons of early speed that opted for this 8.5f race over the much shorter Juvenile Sprint, and will have a lot to say about the shaping of the pace scenario. Can Kauai Katie and Beholder carry their speed over this distance?

1) Kauai Katie (3-1)- Sprinting type should battle with Beholder for the early lead, and while some doubt her ability to handle the distance in her first two turn start, I’m not one of them. Talented runner figures to be able to extend her speed and get the better of her rival as the two battle alone on the lead. 88 Beyer in 8f Matron win.

2) Executiveprivilege (2-1)- Undefeated in five starts and looked dominant trying two turns for the first time last out. Recent workouts have left something to be desired. 88 Beyer in 8.5f Chandelier win, deserving favorite.

3) Dreaming of Julia (5-2)- Posted 90 Beyer two starts back, but had a tougher time than she should have in her last start and steps up in terms of competition against some very speedy ladies, but is 3/3 lifetime. Same connections as Kauai Katie, so running Katie here with her has to mean something.

4) Beholder (5-2)- Field high Beyer of 106 appears dominant, but that was at 6f around one turn. Figures to be part of a strong early pace and feel this may be a bit beyond her ideal distance, but could be dangerous if she gets loose.

Filly and Mare Turf, 10:48 pm

*The deepest race on the entire BC card. I can’t see going less than 5 deep here in multi-race wagers. The pace scenario is questionable as it doesn’t appear that anyone wants the lead, and this could create an interesting race complexion. The surface is worthy of note as well; while Euros have dominated Turf races at the BC over time, the firm turf at Santa Anita could give the Americans an edge here, at a decent price.

1) Zagora 8-1- Might have been best in 10f Flower Bowl when 2nd by a nose and should improve on firmer footing, boasts field high 103 Beyer, but that was at 9f. Americans have upset this race the last two runnings, why not again? She might be one to steal this one on the lead if no one else wants it, and will be a higher price than she should be based on the myth that she can’t get 10f. She can.

2) The Fugue 7-2- Likes the firm going, and appears the most dangerous of the Euro shippers. Classed in 6 starts this year as a 3 YO, many at longer distances, but wasn’t flattered when Shareta, who beat her last out, finished dismally in the prestigious Arc de Triomphe. Hard to gauge her Euro form against these but seems a contender on form alone.

3) I’m a Dreamer 8-1- Won 10f Beverly D at Arlington over firm ground and has ran well against some of Europe’s best, including males. 4th place finish in Flower Bowl last out was better than it looked and she may not have taken well to the yielding turf there; should move up on firmer ground.

4) Nahrain 6-1- Runner-up last year against a weaker field gives it another shot off of a blanket finish win in the competitive 10f Flower Bowl over softer turf. She had been off form before that overseas, so consistency remains an issue, as does the switch ot firmer ground.

5) Ridasiyna 4-1- Euros have dominated recent BC Turf races, and she’s faced and beaten top competition in France, but mostly over softer ground. 3 YO has won 4 of 5 starts while steadily improving in class but appears a short-priced favorite in a field this deep and is worth trying to beat at this price, as the turf at Santa Anita this time of year won’t have any give.

6) Marketing Mix 9-2- She’s proven me wrong since throwing in a real clunker when I supported her Derby Day, but I still feel that she isn’t quite in the same class here and is going to be at short odds here. Still, she did run on well for 2nd in the Beverly D and dominated in the start following that.

Ladies Classic, 11:30 pm

Easily the toughest edition of this race ever. The 5th choice on the morning line has won back to back Grade 1s on the lead (Love and Pride). Four Eclipse Champions in one race (Royal Delta Older Female 2011, Awesome Feather 2 YO Filly 2010, My Miss Aurelia 2 YO Filly 2011, and likely Questing 2012 3 YO Filly). That’s probably never happened before. Royal Delta appears on paper to be a deserving favorite as she attempts to repeat, but if history has taught us anything, you don’t want to single anyone here in Multi-Race Wagers.

1) Royal Delta 5-2- Looked dominant in 10 length Beldame romp last out, deserving favorite in the best field in the history of this race. Pace scenario sets up well for her here, as she’ll be able to lay off the likely contentious opening fractions and make a strong late move. The best of the bunch on her best day, but she’s been inconsistent this year. Field high 110 Beyer is the field topper.

2) Questing 4-1- Narrowly beaten favorite in enticing stretch duel last out but was giving 7 pounds in that race, shorter at 8.5f,  and disliked the deep, slow track, and had dominated the 3 YO division prior to that. 106 Beyer in dominating front-running win in the 10f Alabama. Should be forwardly placed with several others here and risks fading early as a result of a speed duel.

3) Awesome Feather 3-1- Undefeated in 10 career starts so it’s hard to overlook her, and her last race was perhaps her strongest to date following a long layoff, as she posted a career high 108 Beyer. This will be her greatest challenge to date, but she is a strong competitor and always fires.

4) My Miss Aurelia 6-1- Another undefeated starter here who beat Questing in her last start following a long layoff. She’s the defending Juvenile champion and is clearly a force to be reckoned with, but moves up in weight and class for her biggest test yet. She should be near the early pace as well.

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