Breeders’ Cup Sprint Top 5: A 3-year-old moves to the top

Since we published our first Breeders’ Cup Sprint Top 5 in June, a lot has changed on the road to the championship showdown at Santa Anita.

Is Mitole unstoppable in the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap?

Mitole winning the Churchill Downs Stakes (G1) - Coady Photography Handicapping Saturday’s $350,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap (G1) at Saratoga boils down to one question. Can anyone stop the sensational #1 Mitole from recording his eighth consecutive victory? Mitole showed promise as a 3-year-old in 2018, but he’s been a beast since he returned from a long layoff this winter. After an easy win in an optional-claiming allowance at Oaklawn Park, Mitole fired off consecutive victories in the [...]

May 2019 Breeders’ Cup Overview: Who Leads Each Division?

Bricks and Mortar winning the Old Forester Turf Classic (G1) - Coady Photography Don’t look now, but the 2019 Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita Park is just more than five months away, and the first North American leg of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series kicks off this weekend. Handicappers will be happy to know several key Breeders’ Cup divisions look wide open this year, which should make the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series races exciting and competitive. Let’s quickly [...]

Picks and Plays for Dubai World Cup Night

Almond Eye winning the Japan Cup (Jpn-I) - Photo courtesy of the Japan Racing Association By far the best race card in the world this Saturday will take place at Meydan Racecourse in Dubai, where the eight Thoroughbred races on Dubai World Cup Night will pit high-class runners from around the world against each other in a series of rich stakes events. I’ve gone through the card and have put together a list of horses that interest me [...]

Dubai Carnival Update: Walking Thunder Carries Derby Dreams for Dubai

Thunder Snow winning the 2018 Dubai World Cup - Coady Photography From the deserts of the Middle East to the bluegrass of Kentucky, who’s coming to Churchill Downs by way of Dubai? With 170 Kentucky Derby qualification points on the line in the March 30 UAE Derby (UAE-II) at Meydan Racecourse in Dubai, we're bound to see one or two horses use the desert challenge as a springboard to Churchill Downs. Although no UAE Derby starter has ever [...]

Roy H, Imperial Hint Meet Again in 2018 Breeders’ Cup Sprint

Promises Fulfilled edges Whitmore in a thrilling renewal of the Phoenix Stakes (gr. III) - Keeneland Photo Nine runners. Eight stakes winners. Seven graded stakes winners. Four Grade 1 winners. One champion. Those are the characteristics that define the field for the $2 million TwinSpires Breeders’ Cup Sprint (gr. I) on November 3rd at Churchill Downs, one of the most wide-open and competitive races of the 2018 Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Never mind that the nine-horse field represents the [...]

Four Weeks Out: Keeler Johnson’s Breeders’ Cup Top 10 Rankings

Promises Fulfilled edges Whitmore in a thrilling renewal of the Phoenix Stakes (gr. III) - Keeneland Photo With the vast majority of the Breeders’ Cup prep races having been completed, now is the perfect time to start mulling over the top contenders for each race and shaping our early opinions of who might win and who might be vulnerable to defeat. Over the last several months, I’ve been posting lists of my top ten contenders for various Breeders’ [...]

Back for More: Eight Breeders’ Cup Champs Could Seek Repeat Wins

Mendelssohn winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf (Photo by Ting Shen/Eclipse Sportswire/Breeders Cup) As the fields for the 2018 Breeders’ Cup races continue to take shape, it’s becoming increasingly clear that we could see an impressive number of past winners return with an eye on adding additional Breeders’ Cup titles to their records. All told, eight previous Breeders’ Cup winners—six from 2017 and two from 2016—could see action at Churchill Downs four weeks from now. Some will be attempting [...]

Keeler Johnson’s Breeders’ Cup Sprint Top 10: Will a 3yo Prevail?

Promises Fulfilled winning the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II) - Photo by Leslie Martin/Coglianese Photography With the 2018 Breeders’ Cup at Churchill Downs rapidly approaching—it’s just eight weeks away—the fields for the 14 championship races are starting to take shape. At the moment, it appears that the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (gr. I) will be among the deepest and most contentious races, so sorting through the numerous talented candidates for the race isn’t an easy task. But I’m [...]

Why I’m Betting Switzerland in the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap

Switzerland winning an allowance race at Oaklawn Park - Coady Photography Nowadays, it’s hard to believe that Switzerland ever had a reputation as a “money burner”—a horse who frequently suffers defeats at short prices. Indeed, for a time, Switzerland was viewed as the king of money burners. The son of Speightstown showed talent from an early age, but nevertheless managed to lose the first seven starts of his career, including five defeats while favored to win. But when [...]