Lessons from tough Breeders’ Cup for punters

World Approval was one of just two favorites to win at the Breeders' Cup. Pic: Coglianese Photos/Susie Raisher. OK, hands up – who out there thought Mor Spirit, Moonshine Memories, Unique Bella, Lady Aurelia, Lady Eli, Drefong, and Bolt d’Oro would all be beaten at the Breeders’ Cup? It’s not often that only two one of the 13 Breeders’ Cup favorites win, as happened at Del Mar this year. But in an unpredictable year, only World Approval and [...]

Questions of track bias raised by Breeders’ Cup

Del Mar's surface became a major talking point after the 2017 Breeders' Cup. Photo: Benoit Photo. Del Mar’s first Breeders’ Cup proved notable for its multiple shocks as well as for its great performances. When results like these happen, questions invariably get asked about whether there was any kind of track bias. The only favorites to win were both on turf: World Approval (5-2) in the Mile on Saturday, and Mendelssohn in the Juvenile Turf – and at [...]

Tough challenge for Unique Bella in Filly and Mare Sprint

Unique Bella is aiming to become the first 3-year-old to win the Filly & Mare Turf. Pic: Benoit Photo. We’ll know a lot more about the ability of boom filly Unique Bella after the seven-furlong Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) on Nov. 4. Unique Bella was a popular early pick for the Kentucky Oaks after winning three graded stakes races in California early this year. But an injury struck and she was forced out for most [...]

Spinster Stakes an Opportunity for Lockdown

After a frustrating run of minor placings during the year, Lockdown gets perhaps her best chance to win her first graded stakes race in the Spinster Stakes (G1) at Keeneland Oct 8. With most of the best fillies and mares staying at home for their Breeders’ Cup Distaff preparations, Lockdown has been made the 3-1 morning-line favorite for the Spinster. The contest doubles as a Breeders’ Cup Challenge race, guaranteeing the winner a place in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff. After [...]