A BREEDERS’ CUP CLASSIC RUNDOWN
The richest Thoroughbred race in North America will take place on October 31 as the climax of the Breeders’ Cup. Run for the first time ever at the historic Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Kentucky, the Classic has all the makings to be a real… classic! Let’s take a look at the ten entrants that will running the mile and a quarter in the race for their piece of a $5 million purse.
American Pharoah- Triple Crown winner and a road warrior…do we need to say anything else about this four-footed phenom?
Beholder- She has already won the Juvenile Fillies (2012) and Distaff (2013). Now she wants to become the first ever to win 3 different Breeders’ Cup events. She certainly has the intelligence and turn of foot to get it done.
Honor Code- A hard closing horse that needs pace to run at. This great grandson of Secretariat has never won at this distance, but his final furlong is normally fast and furious. Has 2 grade 1 wins this year against top flight runners.
Keen Ice-This Dale Romans trained three-year old is the only one to finish ahead of American Pharoah this year (Travers win). The light bulb seems to have come on for this son of Curlin and he will make a big run at the end. Has proven he can get the distance.
Tonalist-The horse that ended the Triple Crown dreams of California Chrome in last year’s Belmont has been very solid in 2015 with 2 wins, 2 seconds, and a third in five starts. This son of Tapit is fresh off a victorious run in the mile and a quarter Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont on October 3.
Frosted- Another three-year old sensation that has looked better and better as the summer has moved into fall. Fought hard in the Travers Stakes (3rd ) and then won the Pennsylvania Derby on September 19. His looks are as pretty as they come.
Smooth Roller-Did not start at the age of two or three, but has won three of four this year. This son of Hard Spun looked extremely impressive in winning the Awesome Again Stakes on September 26. May be a live long shot here.
Gleneagles- Irish-bred runner from across the pond that provides more than just some international flavor. He has 7 lifetime wins, but all are on turf and none at over a mile distance.
Effinex-Trainer Jimmy Jerkens says he is much more than just a New York-bred. This son of Mineshaft has won twice this year at this distance and is battle tested with six starts and four times hitting the board in 2015.
Hard Aces- This John Sadler trained son of Hard Spun looked like the trump card in winning the Gold Cup at Santa Anita on June 27, but was flat in two starts since. Four grade 1 starts in 2015 means he has been in good company, but needs to run bigger if he hopes to be the high card here.