Eight Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” races highlighted by the $1 million Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) at Keeneland are on tap this Saturday.
The Shadwell Turf Mile is one of the best wagering races among the eight Challenge races, a field of 11 lining up. The race usually produces a leading contender for the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) but the early favorite for that race goes earlier on the Keeneland card.
Tepin, the defending champion of the Mile will stick in with the females as the 2-5 morning line favorite in the $400,000 First Lady (G1).
It could be a chalky day with Lord Nelson the 2-5 morning line favorite in a field of five in the $200,000 Santa Anita Sprint Championship (G1), a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Sprint.
Super Saturday at Belmont Park could be renamed “Short Field Saturday” with just five going in the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1), fields of just six going in the $500,000 Champagne (G1), $500,000 Flower Bowl (G1, $400,000 Frizette (G1) and seven in the $350,000 Kelso Handicap (G2).
The Shadwell Turf Mile will not be chalky, with any of six or seven capable of winning. Among the field is the defending champion Grand Arch, who won last year’s edition at 9-2 and coming in off a third in the Fourstardave Handicap (G1) at Saratoga. The Brian Lynch trainee is 10-1 on the morning line.
My Best Plays Report for Saturday includes my strongest plays from Belmont Park and Keeneland and includes all eight Breeders’ Cup Challenge races. The report includes 13 races.
Let’s head out to Keeneland for Saturday’s featured race of the day:
Keeneland Race 9 The Shadwell Turf Mile G1 (Post time 5:45 ET)
#8 Ironicus 4-1
#9 Ring Weekend 5-1
#10 Tourist 3-1
#4 Mondialiste 6-1
Analysis: Ironicus is coming off a good effort in a runner up finish in the Manhattan (G1) at 1 1/4 miles at Belmont Park. The Shug trainee angled down to the rail in the stretch and had to steady as a foe drifted in on him and once clear finished up well, beaten 1 3/4 lengths by Flintshire. The winner came back to win the Bowling Green (G2) and Sword Dancer (G1) before running second in the Joe Hirsch (G1). Third place finisher World Approval came out of the race to win the United Nations (G1) in his next outing at Monmouth Park. The barn is 27% winners (with a +ROI) with runners coming back off a 61-180-day layoff and this guy won the Ft. Marcy (G3) two back off am eight-month layoff.
Ring Weekend made a good late rally to get up and win the Bernard Baruch ‘Cap (G2) last out at the Spa and has landed in the exacta in 7 of his 9 career starts on turf. He makes his third start of his current form cycle for the Motion barn. He won the Kilroe (G1) at a mile last year.
Tourist was beaten a neck when third in this race last year and is coming in here off a victory in the Fourstardave ‘Cap (G1) at the Spa. Two back he ran a good second in the Shoemaker Mile (G1) at Santa Anita behind Midnight Storm, who returned to win the Eddie Read (G1) and the Del Mar Mile ‘Cap (G2) in his next two starts.
WIN: #8 to win at 7-2 or better.
EX: 8,9 / 4,8,9,10
TRI: 8,9 / 4,8,9,10 / 4,5,8,9,10
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.