Eight Breeders’ Cup Challenge Races on Tap as Keeneland Opens Friday

Keeneland opens Friday with a pair of Breeders' Cup Challenge races on tap. (Photo credit: Keeneland.com

Keeneland opens Friday with a pair of Breeders’ Cup Challenge races on tap. (Photo credit: Keeneland.com

The fall meeting at Keeneland gets underway on Friday, highlighted by Fallstars Weekend and over the course of the 17-day meeting there will be 17 graded stakes worth over $5 million in purses.

There are eight Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” races on tap at the meeting including two on opening day—the $400,000 Darley Alcibiades (G1) for juvenile fillies and the $250,000 Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix (G2) for sprinters.

On Saturday there are three Breeders’ Cup Challenge races—the $500,000 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (G1) for juveniles, $1 million Shadwell Turf Mile (G1), a prep for the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) and the $250,000 Thoroughbred Club of America (G2) for female sprinters.

Supporting Saturday’s card are the $150,000 Woodford Presented by Keeneland Select (G3) and the $400,000 First Lady (G1) for fillies and mares on turf.

Sunday’s $250,000 Dixiana Bourbon (G3) and $500,000 Juddmonte Spinster (G1) are “Win and You’re In” races for the Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) and Distaff (G1) respectively.

Keeneland’s final Breeders’ Cup Challenge race is next Wednesday’s $150,000 JPMorgan Chase Jessamine (G3) for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1).

NBC Sports will broadcast from Keeneland during Fall Stars Weekend as part of the “Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” Series presented by Lane’s End Farm and America’s Best Racing.” On opening Saturday, NBC will feature the Thoroughbred Club of America, Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity and Shadwell Turf Mile and the next day will present the Juddmonte Spinster and Dixiana Bourbon. Both programs will air 5-6 p.m. ET.

Since the inception of the Breeders’ Cup in 1984, the winners of 43 Breeders’ Cup races made their final start before the World Championships during Keeneland’s Fall Meet. The track successfully hosted the Breeders’ Cup for the first time in October 2015.

On opening day, a wide open field of 14 will go in the Alcibiades. Arlington Washington Lassie winner Diadora and Pocahontas (G2) winner Daddys Lil Darling are the co-favorites on the morning line at 5-1.

A.P. Indian is the 4-5 morning line favorite for the Phoenix, which drew a field of seven. The Arnaud Delacour trainee scratched out of the Vosburgh (G1) last Saturday at Belmont Park to go in this race.

The gelding ran sixth in this race last year but comes in this year riding a four race winning streak, taking the Forego (G1) at Saratoga in his last outing.


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Michael’s Breeders’ Cup Reports includes his selections, analysis, fair odds line, and wagering recommendations for every race during the two-day Breeders’ Cup from Santa Anita on Nov. 4-5.

The Breeders’ Cup offers 13 championship races over two days, bringing together the best top horses, trainers, and jockeys from around the world, this year to compete at Santa Anita.

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