Trainer Mark Casse has contenders in both of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Races at Woodbine on Sunday, races he has dominated in recent years.
The trainer sends out four fillies in the $250,000 Natalma (G1), a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1).
Casse has won the Natalma a record six times and won it the past two years with Conquest Halanate in 2014 and Catch a Glimpse last year.
His quartet this year are Black Canary (8-1), Thora Barber (15-1), Enstone (8-1) and Victory to Victory (10-1).
Wesley Ward sends out the 3-1 morning line favorite Red Lodge, winner of the Coleen at Monmouth Park in her last outing going 5 ½ furlongs on turf.
Casse will saddle Conquest Sure Shot (10-1) and morning line favorite Conquest Farenheit (2-1) in the $200,000 Summer Stakes (G2), a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1).
Casse has saddled the last three winners of the Summer—My Conquestadory in 2013, Conquest Typhoon in 2014 and last year with Conquest Daddyo. All three were owned by Conquest Stables, the owner of both of Casse’s runners this year.
Conquest Farenheit earned the top last out Beyer Speed Figure with an impressive maiden score in his debut going seven furlongs over yielding turf at Woodbine. The turf course was labeled as good on Saturday after receiving rain.
His main foe will be the Bill Mott trained Good Samaritan, who broke his maiden in his debut at Saratoga going 1 1/16 miles with a good late run.
My Best Plays for Sunday includes my eight strongest plays from Belmont Park and Woodbine.
Let’s head out to Woodbine for Sunday’s featured race of the day:
Woodbine Race 8 The Natalma G1 (Post time 4:56 ET)
#4 Red Lodge 3-1
#8 Beat the Benchmark 4-1
#9 Enstone 8-1
#1 Black Canary 8-1
Analysis: Red Lodge bounced back from a poor showing at Royal Ascot on soft footing to win the Coleen last out at Monmouth Park going 5 1/2 furlongs on turf. The runner up in the race was Iron Mizz, who came back to win the state bred Seeking the Ante at the Spa in her next outing. She looks as if she has enough pedigree to handle the extra ground here for the Ward barn that is 13% winners moving runners from sprint to route.
Beat the Benchmark broke her maiden in her debut at the Spa going 5 1/2 furlongs over good ground. She stalked the early pace and finished up gamely to prevail by a neck. She is by Speightstown out of an El Prado mare that has dropped three other winners, top earner stakes winner Abraham ($536,601). The Brown barn is 32% winners moving runners from sprint to route.
Enstone is one of four in here sent out by the Casse barn that has won this race six times including the last two. She is still a maiden, beaten a neck and ahead in her last two starts. Her last came at Saratoga going long on turf against a solid group. The winner Majestic Bonnie came back to finish third in the P.G. Johnson and the third place finisher Priced Too High came back to graduate in her next start on Aug. 21. Her work on Sept. 5 was alongside Tepin.
WIN: #4 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 4,8 / 1,4,8,9
TRI: 4,8 / 1,4,8,9 / 1,4,8,9,11
Get Michael’s Best Plays Report each Saturday which will include all of the U.S. based Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” races from now to Oct. 12 and Michael Dempsey’s 2-Day Breeders’ Cup Report.
Michael’s two day Breeders’ Cup Report includes his selections, analysis, fair odds line, and wagering recommendations for every race on the two-day championship event from Santa Anita on Nov. 4-5.