A New Reality? Santa Anita Adjusts to 3-day Race Week




Santa Anita apron

copyright AGameofSkill.com

ARCADIA, Calif. (June, 2017)—With Santa Anita’s current Spring Summer Meet set to conclude on Tuesday, July 4, the track has modified its current racing schedule for the next two weeks, as the track will now run a pair of three-day weeks, beginning Friday, June 16 and Friday, June 23, in advance of a five-day closing week, which starts on Friday, June 30.

“It’s always been our goal to run more race dates, but as we’ve said, consistently, we need to present racing cards that provide the most value and are in the best interest of our customers,” said Joe Morris, The Stronach Group’s Senior Vice President of West Coast Operations.  “Looking forward, we will continue to evaluate our racing schedule as we strive to present the best possible product for our fans.”

                Santa Anita has added extra races today, tomorrow and Sunday, resulting in a total of 30 races for the week, compared to 34 that were run over the previous four-day week.  Additionally, entries averaged 8.7 per race this week, compared to 6.9 horses per race last week.

With the current meet set to end on July 4, Fan Appreciation will be a top priority over the final three weeks, with free Club House admission added on Fridays, along with free parking on those days as well.  The final two days of the season, July 3 and 4, will be Dollar Days, with one dollar beers, sodas and hot dogs.

                Santa Anita, which carded a nine-race program today, will offer a special 11-race card tomorrow, Belmont Stakes Day and a 10-race program on Sunday.  Admission gates open early Saturday at 8 a.m. and Santa Anita’s first live race post time is set for 12 noon.

                For complete racing information, please visit santaanita.com.

AGOS Horses to Watch – Belmont Park, more – June 5, 2017

Horses to Watch for AGOS Visitors

Belmont Park


Race  #4 – Ancient Secret – 1 mile turf

She was making her first start of the 2017 season for Chad Brown. Irad Ortiz in the saddle and was tracking perfectly in the two path and weakened down the lane to finish 4th this day. – Toss this race as needing one and you’ll be pleasantly surprised next time she hits the track.



Race #1 – The Crocheron Kid – 6f turf

Jose Ortiz in the irons for David Donk. This guy had an overland trip spinning wide into the lane costing precious ground. He scored this day, and is a perfect candidate for a repeat preformance at the windows.

Race #7 – Vigor – 6f turf

Jose Lezcano in the saddle for Bill Mott and they do very solid work together. He was wide grabbing the lead and later inhaled by a solid winner Rublinda. Give him a hard look next out, and catch him if you can !

Fear No Evil – (Same race)

Luis Saez at the controls for trainer Thom Albertrani. He was tracking perfectly and shut off trying to tip off the rail. He dove right back to the inside and found no room. Saez wrapped up on his mount and saved plenty of gas in the tank for next out.

Race #8 – Kitten’s Cat – 7f  turf

John Velasquez for trainer Joe Sharp. It was a quick pace and he came flying late in the lane, but couldn’t pass the impressive winner Big Handsome. Shipping in from Churchill Downs;  his second time out in the “Big Apple” will make this son of Kitten’s Joy ultra tough.

Santa Anita


Race #5 – Avenge – 1 1/8 turf

Flavien Pratt in the irons for Dick Mandella. She grabbed the lead from the rail and was heavily backed at the windows. She faced a monster this day with Lady Eli and if she catches anyone else she’ll give them all they want next time she hits the track.


Breeders’ Cup XXXI Pre-Entries, Post Times, Wagering Menus


BC 2016 logo ARCADIA, Calif. (October 26, 2016) — The Breeders’ Cup announced today the official order of races, and guaranteed multi-race wagering pools for the 2016 Breeders’ Cup World Championships on Friday, November 4 and Saturday, November 5 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif. There will be a total of 10 races (four Breeders’ Cup Championships races) on the Championship Friday program and 12 races on Championship Saturday (nine Breeders’ Cup Championships races). Championship Friday begins at 11:25 a.m. PT with five undercard races. Championship Saturday first post is 10:15 a.m. PT, and begins with three undercard races.

The race order for the undercard races on Friday and Saturday will also be announced on Monday, October 31.

Championships Race Order (All Times Pacific)

The first Championships race on Breeders’ Cup Friday will be the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (2:25 p.m.); followed by the $1 million Las Vegas Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (3:05 p.m.); the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (3:50 p.m.); and the $2 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff (4:35 p.m.).

Championship Saturday begins with two stakes races followed by the $2 million 14 Hands Winery Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (12:05 p.m.); $2 million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (12:43 p.m.); $1.5 million TwinSpires Breeders’ Cup Sprint (1:21 p.m.); $1 million Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (2:05 p.m.); $2 million Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (2:43 p.m.), $4 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf (3:22 p.m.); $1 million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (4:01); $2 million Breeders’ Cup Mile (4:40 p.m.) and the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (5:35 p.m.).

Friday’s Guaranteed Pools

Friday’s card will open with a $500,000 Pick 5 on Races 1-5. There will be a Pick 6 on Races 4-9 with a $500,000 guarantee and an all Breeders’ Cup Pick 4 on Races 6-9 with a $1.5 million minimum guarantee.

Saturday’s Guaranteed Pools

There will be a $500,000 guaranteed Pick 5 on Races 1-5; an early all Breeders’ Cup Pick 4 with a $1 million guarantee on Races 4-7; a $2 million guaranteed all Breeders’ Cup Ultra Pick 6 on races 7-12 and a $3 million guaranteed all Breeders’ Cup late Pick 4, Races 9-12.



Friday, November 4

Race 1          11:25 AM     WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD   PICK 5
Race 2          12:00 PM     WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD
Race 3          12:35 PM     WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD PICK 4
Race 4              1:10 PM    WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD   PICK 6
Race 5              1:45 PM    WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD
Race 6             2:25 PM   WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD   PICK 4
Race 7             3:05 PM   WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD PICK 4         
Race 8             3:50 PM   WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD          
Race 9             4:35 PM   WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    Sp DD           SupHi 5
Race 10            5:10 PM    WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER

Saturday, November 5

Race 1             10:15 AM         WPS        EX       TRI       SUPER       PICK 3    DD   PICK 5
Race 2             10:50 AM         WPS        EX       TRI       SUPER       PICK 3    DD   PICK 4
Race 3             11:25 AM         WPS        EX       TRI       SUPER       PICK 3    DD
Race 4             12:05 PM         WPS        EX       TRI       SUPER       PICK 3    DD   PICK 4
Race 5         12:43 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD          
Race 6         1:21 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD          
Race 7         2:05 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD PICK 6         
Race 8         2:43 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD          
Race 9         3:22 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD PICK 4
Race 10        4:01 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER    PICK 3    DD
Race 11        4:40 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER                   DD 
Race 12        5:35 PM      WPS       EX      TRI      SUPER               Super Hi 5

BOLD are Breeders’ Cup World Championships races 

  • Friday’s Pick 6, Pick 5 and Super Hi 5 may carryover from Friday to Saturday. 
  • Saturday’s Pick 6, Pick 5 and Super Hi 5 may carryover from Saturday to Sunday. 
  • Special Distaff/Classic Daily Double on Friday race 9 and Saturday race 12.




$.50 –  TRIFECTA, PICK 3, PICK 4, PICK 5, SUPER Hi 5



About Breeders’ Cup

The Breeders’ Cup administers the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Thoroughbred racing’s year-end Championships. The Breeders’ Cup also administers the Breeders’ Cup Challenge qualifying series, which provides automatic starting positions into the Championships races. The 2016 Breeders’ Cup World Championships, consisting of 13 grade I races with purses and awards totaling $28 million, will be held November 4-5 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif., and will be televised live by the NBC Sports Group. Breeders’ Cup press releases appear on the Breeders’ Cup Web site, www.breederscup.com. You can also follow the Breeders’ Cup on social media platforms Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube

2016 Breeders’ Cup Post Times Set

LEXINGTON, Ky. (October 4, 2016) – The Breeders’ Cup announced today the post times for the two-day Breeders’ Cup World Championships, consisting of 13 races and purses and awards totaling $28 million, which will be held on November 4-5 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif.

The official race order and wagering menu for both days of the Championships will be announced on Wednesday, October 26.

Santa Anita San Gabriel

copyright Cheryl Ann Quigley

The 33rd Breeders’ Cup begins on Friday, November 4 with a total of 10 races, four of them Breeders’ Cup World Championships races. There will be five Santa Anita Park races preceding the first Breeders’ Cup race, with post time of the first race at 11:25 a.m. PT. The first Breeders’ Cup race will be Race #6 and will have a post time of 2:25 p.m. PT. The $2 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff will be the ninth race on the program, with a post time of 4:35 p.m. PT.

All of Friday’s Breeders’ Cup races will be televised live on NBCSN.

There will be 12 races on the Saturday, November 5 program, featuring nine Breeders’ Cup World Championships races. There will be three Santa Anita Park races preceding the first Breeders’ Cup race, with post time for the day’s first race at 10:15 a.m. PT. The first Breeders’ Cup race will be Race #4 and will have post time of 12:05 p.m. The first eight Breeders’ Cup races will be televised live on NBCSN.

Post time for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, Race #12, will be 5:35 p.m. PT, and will be televised live and in primetime on NBC.

2016 Breeders’ Cup World Championships


All Times Pacific

Friday, November 4
Race 1 11:25 AM
Race 2 12:00 PM
Race 3 12:35 PM
Race 4 1:10 PM
Race 5 1:45 PM
Race 6 2:25 PM
Race 7 3:05 PM
Race 8 3:50 PM
Race 9 4:35 PM Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff

Race 10 5:10 PM

Saturday, November 5
Race 1 10:15 AM
Race 2 10:50 AM
Race 3 11:25 AM
Race 4 12:05 PM
Race 5 12:43 PM
Race 6 1:21 PM
Race 7 2:05 PM
Race 8 2:43 PM
Race 9 3:22 PM
Race 10 4:01 PM
Race 11 4:40 PM
Race 12 5:35 PM Breeders’ Cup Classic


BOLD are Breeders’ Cup World Championships races

AGOS Horses to Watch – 6/21/16

Churchill Downs

Dixie Jewel (6/11/16 – Race #1 – #1 – 1 1/16 dirt) – jockey Robby Albarado in the irons for Grant Forster, and his filly was in tight and forced to steady right about the 1/4 pole.   Sometimes it’s hard to regain your momentum and get back in gear, and she was a bridesmaid on this day. Next out may turn the table for a little payback, especially with a better rider aboard.

Our Stormin Norman (6/11/16 – Race #5 – #1 – 5f dirt) –  Joe Rocco Jr. in the saddle, and he was off slow in the 5f sprint. Going this short knocks away your chances, and you can bet dollars to donuts he’ll be a monster gaining experience from this race.

Sight Reading (6/11/16 – Race #9 – #6 – 1 1/16 turf) –  Robby A in the saddle, and his mount was roughed up a bit heading into the first turn and forced wide at different times of the race.    A maiden break is coming very soon as he regained his composure and made an honest attempt down the lane.

Santa Anita

Magical Touch (SA 6/11/16 – Race #3 – #3 – 6f dirt) –  This filly stumbled badly at the start and regained her composure nicely to finish a solid second place effort.   You may not get the greatest odds so you’ll be forced to find multi-race exotics to get you maximum payoff.

Sugaratmidnight (SA 6/11/16 – Race #6 – #3 – 6f dirt) – Santiago Gonzalez was in the drivers seat and made a very gutsy move splitting runners through a tight spot and rallied up strong for the show spot. They were moving fast and maybe 6 1/2 or 7f may be to his liking.

Stormin Trick (SA 6/11/16 – Race #10 – #10 – 5 1/2f dirt) –  Nothing like looking for a repeat winner, and Joe Talamo did an excellent job sitting as a passenger as his runner grabbed the lead and drew off to the winner’s circle. He looked to have plenty in the tank and repeat effort is not out of the question.

Wrona is New Announcer at Santa Anita

Santa Anita San Gabriel

copyright Cheryl Ann Quigley

LOS ANGELES — Michael Wrona, who left Australia 25 years ago to pursue his dream as a race caller, was named the announcer at Santa Anita Park, replacing the popular Trevor Denman, who resigned from the Arcadia track in December. Wrona, along with Frank Mirahmadi, were the two internal candidates calling races for three weeks at… [Read more…]

AGOS Claimer of the Week: Nothing to stop Santa Anita runner

Santa Anita San Gabriel

copyright Cheryl Ann Quigley

 Prohibition stalked the early leader, moved up to take the lead in the far turn and held an advantage to the wire in winning the first race at Santa Anita Saturday afternoon. Prohibition has been named the agameofskill.com Claimer of the Week after his victory over $40,000 claimers. The son of Lawyer Ron covered the 8 ½ furlongs over a fast Arcadia strip in 1:45.87. His backers were paid $6.20 after his seventh lifetime win became official. Ridden by Flavien Prat, the chestnut gelding has finished in the money (top three finishers) 11 times from 26 career races. Owned and trained by Vann Belvoir, the 6 year old has now accumulated more than $225,000 in lifetime earnings.

Champion Racehorses top 201 Horses Pre-entered for 2014 Breeders’ Cup


ARCADIA, Calif. (October 22, 2014) – Led by an international all-star cast of the world’s best horses, including Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner California Chrome,  undefeated Pacific Classic and Awesome Again Stakes winner  Shared Belief, Belmont Stakes and Jockey Club Gold Cup winner Tonalist, Haskell and Pennsylvania Derby winner Bayern, and defending  European champions Magician (IRE) and Dank (GB),  a record 201 horses, including 38 from overseas, have been pre-entered for the 2014 Breeders’ Cup World Championships.

The 31st Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Thoroughbred racing’s most prestigious global event, consisting of 13 grade one races with purses and awards totaling $26 million, will be held at Santa Anita Park for the third consecutive year on Friday, October 31 and Saturday, November 1. There will be four Breeders’ Cup races on Championship Friday and nine Breeders’ Cup races on Championship Saturday.

The Breeders’ Cup will be televised live by NBCSN and NBC. The $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic will be broadcast live and in primetime on Saturday, November 1 on NBC (8-9 p.m. ET).

Goldencents (Dirt Mile), Ria Antonia (Juvenile Fillies), Magician (Turf); Secret Circle (Sprint) and Dank (GB) are the five 2013 winners pre-entered for this year’s Breeders’ Cup. A total of 37 horses have received automatic qualifying berths into the races through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” series.

The Breeders’ Cup Classic, the climactic event of the Championships, is contested at 1 ¼ miles on the main track. An oversubscribed field of 15 horses have been pre-entered. Since the event’s inception in 1984, 11 winners of the Classic have been voted Thoroughbred racing’s Horse of the Year, and with California Chrome and Shared Belief leading the way, this year’s race could produce No.12.

Steve Coburn and Perry Martin’s California Chrome took the sports world by storm this year with rousing victories in Santa Anita Derby, Kentucky Derby and Preakness for trainer Art Sherman. He ran fourth in his bid to become racing’s 12th Triple Crown winner in the 1 ½ mile Belmont Stakes (GI). He returned to the races in the 1 1/8 mile Pennsylvania Derby (GII) on September 20, but was a disappointing sixth behind Bayern. California Chrome, a son of Lucky Pulpit, has won 8 times in 14 lifetime starts.

While California Chrome dominated racing during the first half of 2014, Shared Belief has been the big horse during the second half. Trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, Jungle Racing, Alex Solis II, George Todaro and Jason Litt’s Shared Belief was an easy choice for 2-year-old champion as he went undefeated and untested in three starts, which culminated in a 5 ¾-length win in the CashCall Futurity (GI) at Hollywood Park in December. The son of Candy Ride (ARG) missed the Triple Crown season with lingering foot issues but quickly rose to the forefront of his division off victories in a pair of grade I “Win and You’re In” races for the Classic over older horses; Del Mar’s TVG Pacific Classic (GI) in August and Santa Anita’s Awesome Again (GI) on September 27. Shared Belief, with the Breeders’ Cup’s all-time winningest rider Mike Smith aboard, will put his perfect 7-for-7 record on the line in the Classic and would be odds-on to win Horse of the Year, as well as the 3-year-old championship, with a win.

Robert Evans’ Tonalist, trained by Christophe Clement, has built an impressive resume of his own and would warrant a long look for both titles with a Classic win. The son of Tapit didn’t break his maiden until January at Gulfstream Park but gained national attention when he upset California Chrome in the Belmont, then secured an automatic berth into the Classic when he beat older horses in Belmont’s “Win and You’re In” Jockey Club Gold Cup (GI) on September 27.

Kaleem Shah’s front-running Bayern has been a tough competitor all year.  He captured Belmont’s Woody Stephens (GII) in June and had dominant wins in Monmouth Park’s “Win and You’re In” William Hill Haskell (GI) in July and in the Pennsylvania Derby in September for trainer Bob Baffert. The son of Offlee Wild will try to extend his high cruising speed to 1 ¼ miles in the Classic.

Trainer Jimmy Jerkens has decided to pre-enter Travers Stakes (GI) winner V.E. Day for owner Magalen Bryant, and the son of 2007 Breeders’ Cup Turf winner English Channel should relish the 1 ¼ mile distance. The remaining group of 3-year-olds pre-entered for the Classic includes C R K Stable’s Candy Boy, third in the Pennsylvania Derby for John Sadler; and Toast of New York, a synthetic specialist who was second to Shared Belief in the Pacific Classic and a winner of the UAE Derby in Dubai back in the spring for Jamie Osborne.

The Classic has been won by older horses in 10 of the past 12 runnings, with Curlin in 2007 and   Raven’s Pass in 2008 being the only 3-year-olds to win in that stretch. This year’s group is led by a pair who secured automatic starting berths in the Classic with grade one “Win and You’re In” victories: Southern Equine Stable’s 4-year-old Moreno, a son of 2004 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner Ghostzapper, who won Saratoga’s Whitney in August for trainer Eric Guillot, and Gallant Stable’s Majestic Harbor, who rolled to victory in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita in June for trainer Sean McCarthy. KM Racing Enterprise’s Imperative, who won the Charles Town Classic (GII) in April for George Papaprodromou; Godolphin Stable’s  Footbridge, who was third to Shared Belief in the Awesome Again; Cigar Street, winner of the Homecoming Stakes at Churchill Downs for trainer Bill Mott;  Thomas Coleman’s homebred Zivo, who won Belmont’s Suburban (GII) at 1 ¼ miles and was second in the Jockey Club Gold Cup for Chad Brown, and Big Cazanova (ARG), a group one winner in South America last year, round out the pre-entries for the Classic.

Friday’s headline event is the $2 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Distaff at 1 1/8 miles for fillies and mares, 3-years-old and up. Juddmonte Farms’ Close Hatches was the undisputed divisional leader off a 4-for-4 record this year for trainer Bill Mott but will need to rebound from an extremely disappointing fourth-place finish at 1-5 in Keeneland’s “Win and You’re In” Juddmonte Spinster (GI) on October 5. The 4-year-old daughter of First Defence, who was second to Beholder in last year’s Distaff, won Oaklawn Park’s Apple Blossom (GI)  in April, the Phipps and Saratoga’s “Win and You’re In” Personal Ensign (GI)  in August to take charge of the division. Close Hatches is 9-for-13 lifetime starts for Mott, who has won the race an unprecedented five times.

The undisputed queen of the 3-year-old fillies is Ron Winchell’s homebred Untapable, who has dominated her rivals in all five starts against her peers this season for trainer Steve Asmussen. The daughter of Tapit won her first four starts of the year, including Churchill Downs’ Kentucky Oaks (GI) in May and Belmont’s Mother Goose (GI) in June, by 31 lengths but then was a disappointing fifth when favored in Bayern’s “Win and You’re In” William Hill Haskell  at Monmouth Park in July. Untapable rebounded with a win in Parx Racing’s Cotillion (GI) September 20 and will put her 7-for-10 career record on the line when she tests older fillies and mares for the first time in the Distaff.

Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stable and Gary Aisquith’s Belle Gallantey, who won Belmont’s “Win and You’re In” Beldame (GI) September 27 for Rudy Rodriguez; Jerry Namy and trainer Philip Sims’ Don’t Tell Sophia, who upset Close Hatches in the Spinster; Hronis Racing’s Iotapa, who won the local Vanity in June and “Win and You’re In” Clement Hirsch at Del Mar in August and was third in the Zenyatta for John Sadler; and Loooch Racing Stable and Chris Dunn’s Ria Antonia, who upset last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies and was second in the Spinster for Tom Amoss, and Valiant Emilia (PER), who won the “Win and You’re In” Cesar del Rio in Peru in June, now under the care of trainer Gary Mandella  in the U.S,  have all been pre-entered.

While the Classic and Distaff figure to have deserving and identifiable favorites, the $3 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf and $2 million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf are shaping up as deep and wide open affairs. The Turf, run over 1 ½ miles, is led by Flaxman Holdings’ homebred Main Sequence, who has done little wrong in winning all three U.S. starts—in grade I company—for trainer Graham Motion: Monmouth Park’s “Win and You’re In” United Nations in July, Saratoga’s Sword Dancer in August and Belmont Park’s “Win and You’re In” Joe Hirsch Turf Classic (GI) September 27. The 5-year-old son of Aldebaran is 7-for-17 lifetime in a career that started in Europe and has had a nose for the finish line in his three starts this year, as all three wins have come in photo finishes.

Coolmore’s defending Turf champion Magician (IRE) will also attract support for Aidan O’Brien. The 4-year-old son of Galileo, has won just once this year, but has been second in three group one races, including the Arlington Million. Two Breeders’ Cup Challenge winners in Michael House’s Big John B, who won the Del Mar Handicap (GII) in August for Phil D’Amato and Andrew Bentley’s Hardest Core, who took the Arlington Million (GI) August 16 for Eddie Graham, also merit respect as do Phipps Stable’s homebred Imagining and West Point Thoroughbreds’ Twilight Eclipse, who have lost photo finishes to Main Sequence for Shug McGaughey and Tom Albertrani, respectively. In addition to Magician, Europe figures to send formidable foes in  Juddmonte Farms’ homebred Flintshire (GB), who was last seen finishing second to Treve (FR) in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe; Andrew Black and Owens Promotion’s Brown Panther (GB), winner of the Irish St. Leger (GI) on September 14 and Highclere Thoroughbred Racing’s Telescope (GB), for trainer  Michael Stoute, a four-time winner of the Turf, who won the Hardwicke Stakes (GII) at Ascot and was third in the Juddmonte International (GI) at York this summer.

The Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf, run at 1 ¼ miles,  is led by  Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey’s homebred Stephanie’s Kitten, who could be the favorite off her sharp win in Belmont’s “Win and You’re In” Flower Bowl (GI) September 27 for trainer Chad Brown. Juddmonte’s homebred Emollient earned an automatic berth into the race when she won the local course and distance prep, the “Win and You’re In” Rodeo Drive (GI) September 27 for trainer Bill Mott and will look to better her fourth place run in last year’s race.  Tough competition should come from Fiesolana (IRE), who earned an automatic Filly & Mare Turf bid with her win in Leopardstown’s Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron (GI) in September for trainer Willie McCreery and the Niarchos Family and defending champion Dank (GB), who has started just twice this year, most recently a fifth place finish in Prince of Wales at Royal Ascot.

Wise Dan’s defection from the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Mile has opened up the race considerably as 25 horses have been pre-entered. Anthony Fanticola and Joe Scardino’s Obviously (IRE), who won the “Win and You’re In” Shoemaker Mile (GI) at Santa Anita in June for Phil D’Amato, has been third and fifth, respectively, in the last two editions of the Mile at Santa Anita.  Braly Family Trust’s Tom’s Tribute, who won Del Mar’s Eddie Read (GI) and Del Mar Mile (GII) this summer for Jim Cassidy, is in the best form of his career and looms a major contender as well.

The Europeans counter with Al Shaqab Racing’s Toronado (IRE), who won the group one Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot for trainer Richard Hannon. The 4-year-old son of two-time Breeders’ Cup Turf winner High Chaparral (IRE) lost the Prix de Moulin de Longchamp (GI) by just a head in his most recent start on September 14. Qatar Racing’s Trade Storm (GB), who won the “Win and You’re In” Ricoh Woodbine Mile (GI) September 14 for David Simcock has been pre-entered. Wertheimer et Frere’s Anodin (IRE), a full-brother to three-time Mile winner Goldikova (IRE), who was second in the “Win and You’re In” Jacques le Marois (GI) at Deauville in August for Freddy Head and was third to Toronado in the Queen Anne, could also be formidable.

The $1.5 million Xpressbet Breeders’ Cup Sprint is oversubscribed with 21 horses pre-entered. Run at six furlongs, the Sprint will bring together a quartet of “Win and You’re In” stars who will look to dethrone defending champion Secret Circle:   Antonino Miuccio’s Palace, who won Saratoga’s Vanderbilt (GI)  in July and the “Win and You’re In” Forego (GI) in August for trainer Linda Rice; Good Friend Stable’s Private Zone, who defeated Palace in Belmont Park’s “Win and You’re In” Vosburgh (GI) September 27 for trainer Alfredo Velazquez, and Yuk Tak Cheung’s Rich Tapestry (IRE), who  came from Hong Kong and upset Secret Circle in winning his U.S. debut in the “Win and You’re In” Santa Anita Sprint Championship (GI) October 4 for trainer C W Chang; and Midwest Thoroughbreds’ homebred Work All Week, who remained undefeated in nine dirt starts when he won Keeneland’s “Win and You’re In” Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix (GIII) October 3 for trainer Roger Brueggemann.

The DraftKings Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, run at seven furlongs, could be the most balanced race of the weekend, with trainer Wesley Ward’s Judy The Beauty, who was second in the race last year, leading the way. Chester and Mary Broman’s homebred Artemis Agrotera, who earned an automatic bid in Saratoga’s “Win and You’re In” Ballerina (GI) in August for trainer Mike Hushion, Eugene Melnyk’s homebred Leigh Court, who won Keeneland’s “Win and You’re In”  Thoroughbred Club of America (GII) October 4 for trainer Josie Carroll, Pegram, Watson and Weitman’s Midnight Lucky, who dominated Churchill Downs’ Humana Distaff (GI) in May in her only start of the year for Baffert, and Treadway Racing’s Sweet Reason, a one-turn dynamo who won Belmont’s Acorn (GI) in June and Saratoga’s Test (GI) in August for trainer Leah Gyarmati, are also major contenders.

The $1 million Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, run at about six and a half furlongs, is contested over one of the world’s most challenging turf courses in Santa Anita’s undulating hillside course. The race is oversubscribed with a record 29 horses. Tarabilla Farm’s Home Run Kitten and Pamela Ziebath’s homebred Ambitious Brew, the 1-2 finishers over the course and distance in the Eddie D. (GIII) September 26, will attract attention for trainers David Hofmans and Marty Jones, respectively. Riverside Bloodstock’s Dimension (GB) looked good winning the Kentucky Downs Turf Dash for trainer Conor Murphy. The second and third place finishers in last year’s Turf Sprint, Reneesgotzip and Tightend Touchdown, should also bear watching.

W C Racing’s Goldencents figures one of the shorter prices of the weekend when he looks to defend his title in the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, which is run at two turns at Santa Anita, and is limited to 12 starters. The 4-year-old son of Into Mischief, who will be trained by Leandro Mora, blitzed the field in last year’s renewal and has held his form this year through an abbreviated campaign for then-trainer Doug O’Neill. Goldencents may be just 1-for-4 in 2014 but did secure a Dirt Mile berth in Del Mar’s “Win and You’re In” Pat O’Brien (GII) in August and was second in his three other starts, all in grade I’s.

Haras Don Alberto’s Bronzo (CHI), who earned a Dirt Mile berth in the “Win and You’re In” Copa De Oro De Chile (GII) at Hipico Chile in June for Jorge Andres Inda; Kaleem Shah’s Fed Biz, who almost upset Shared Belief in Santa Anita’s “Win and You’re In” Awesome Again (GI) September 27 for Bob Baffert; Magic City Thoroughbred Partners’ Golden Ticket, second in the race last year for Kenny McPeek, and Ron Winchell’s homebred Tapiture for Steve Asmussen, also figure as key contenders.

The 1 1/16-mile $2 million Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile has brought stars from the east and Midwest, but it’s California’s American Pharoah who headlines the field. A bay son of Pioneerof The Nile, American Pharoah broke his maiden in the Del Mar Futurity (GI) in September then backed that win up with a dominant score in the track and distance “Win and You’re In” FrontRunner (GI) September 27 to move his lifetime record to 2-for-3. Across the country, Carpe Diem built on his debut win at Saratoga when he remained undefeated in Keeneland’s “Win and You’re In” Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (GI). The son of Giant’s Causeway stretched out from five and a half furlongs in his debut to win the Futurity at the Juvenile’s 1 1/16-mile distance and looks primed to take the next step at Santa Anita. Daredevil, a son of More Than Ready, looked equally impressive winning Belmont Park’s “Win and You’re In” Champagne (GI) October 4 and, like his stablemate, will also put his 2-for-2 career record on the line in the Juvenile, though he has yet to start on a fast track or at two turns.

The 14 Hands Winery Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies is led by Sienna Farm’s Angela Renee, who earned an automatic berth into the race with her win in the track and distance Chandelier (GI) September 27 for Pletcher. Jay Em Ess Stable’s By The Moon  won Belmont’s “Win and You’re In” Frizette (GI) October 4 for trainer Michelle Nevin and will attract her fair share of support, as will GSN Racing’s Cristina’s Journey, who stayed undefeated in two starts for trainer Dale Romans when she won Churchill’s “Win and You’re In” Pocahontas (GII)  on September 6.


A maximum of 14 starters are allowed in each of the 13 Breeders’ Cup World Championships races with the exception of the Dirt Mile (12). Breeders’ Cup Limited has adopted a field selection system to select runners in the event fields are oversubscribed. This system ranks horses in order of preference based on (i) Breeders’ Cup Challenge race winners, (ii) a point system, and (iii) the judgment of a panel of racing experts.  The field selection system was implemented following the taking of pre-entries on Monday, Oct. 20, to officially rank the oversubscribed fields.  The Racing Secretaries and Directors Panel (the “Panel”) ranked all horses pre-entered in the oversubscribed races.  After pre-entry, any vacancies in the fields will be filled by horses in order of panel preference. Entry for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships races will be Monday, Oct. 27 by 10:00 a.m. (PT).  At the time of entry, a maximum of 14 horses (or 12) will be accepted for each race based on the order of preference established at pre-entry.

There will be up to two (2) also-eligible horses for each Championship race. The also-eligible horses will be designated in accordance with the Breeders’ Cup Racing Directors/Secretaries Panel’s order of preference for each Championship race that is oversubscribed at the time of pre-entry. Scratch time for all Championships races to be contested on both Championship Friday and Championship Saturday will be 8:00 a.m. PT, Friday, Oct. 31.

About Breeders’ Cup

The Breeders’ Cup administers the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Thoroughbred racing’s year-end Championships.  The Breeders’ Cup also administers the Breeders’ Cup Challenge qualifying series, which provides automatic starting positions into the Championships races. The 2014 Breeders’ Cup World Championships, consisting of 13 grade one races with purses and purses totaling $26 million will be held Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif., and will be televised live by NBCSN and NBC. The $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic will be shown live and in primetime on NBC from 8-9 p.m. ET, November 1. Breeders’ Cup press releases appear on the Breeders’ Cup Web site,www.breederscup.com. You can also follow the Breeders’ Cup on social media platforms, FacebookTwitter and YouTube.

Searching for those Longshot Winners at Breeders’ Cup? Don’t Overlook the Obvious

The Breeders' Cup at Santa AnitaBy Art Parker

Miss Alleged at 42-1. Wild Again at 31-1. Spain at 56-1. Volponi at 44-1. Shared Account at 46-1. Court Vision at 65-1. One Dreamer at 47-1. And, of course, Arcangues at 133-1.

I had actually had a couple of those. The horses mentioned are a few of the “bombs” that have fallen on Breeders’ Cup days. Longshots on racing’s biggest day. It does happen, but they are just hard to find.

It has been said with correctness that favorites do better than normal in stakes races. I suppose it is true also when it comes to the Breeders’ Cup.  But who wants to cash a ticket on a 6-5 horse?

There are many ways to look at Breeders’ Cup day. For the novice or the fan (it is important that they cash the 6-5 ticket) my advice is to do whatever you want. Enjoy the day and then go tell everyone you know what a great time you had. Tell everyone they ought to be going to the track as often as possible cause it is a ton of fun.

For the serious handicapper with plenty of experience, I cannot tell you a thing. You already know as much as I (probably more).

For the ones that fall in between the novice and the serious player, I can help you a little bit with Breeders’ Cup day. The first thing, in case you have yet to learn it, is that you will not make money betting on favorites with any reasonable frequency. One must seek value and it is rare if a favorite offers such. On Breeders’ Cup day you have to reach back for a little extra, be willing to study a little longer, be willing to ask questions to learn more.

And then, whatever you do, do not discount or overlook the obvious just because it is Breeders’ Cup day.

The only time the Breeders’ Cup was held at Arlington Park was a day I wish to forget, well almost. It came time for the Classic, the last race of the day, and I was about to leave. I had been beaten unmercifully all day. I watched the post parade and noticed that Volponi looked good. Suddenly I remembered something in his form. I took another look at the race and it was clear. Volponi possessed, by far, the highest speed figure on dirt. I believe Volponi was viewed as a grass only horse. It was obvious that a repeat of that race would make him hard to beat. I’ve got to tell you, it’s absolutely amazing how much a paltry $10 will do when a 44-1 crosses the line in front of all others. I remember leaving the OTB thinking that the day was, “not bad at all.”

I remember searching for a good live longshot in 1994 and, just a few minutes before the Distaff, I noticed a 6 year old gray mare named One Dreamer. All of my buddies said she “couldn’t run with these” and told me to forget her. But I noticed the one thing that all good handicappers pay close attention to, and that is lone speed. One Dreamer was definitely going to get the lead, at least in my opinion. And she had Gary Stevens aboard, who knew how to rate a speed horse. I knew she didn’t quite measure up in terms of class, but I felt that Stevens may just be able to nurse the 47-1 shot all the way to the wire. That is exactly what happened. When they crossed the wire I looked at my friends and asked, “Who said the old gray mare ain’t what she used to be?”

The lesson is not to disregard the obvious just because it is Breeders’ Cup day.

Now, I’m not going to review the multitude of lost longshots I’ve had in 29 years of playing on Breeders’ Cup days. There have been plenty, but overall I am better off than I would be playing a bunch of favorites. If you are trying to become a serious handicapper and elevate your game (let’s just say you are past the novice stage), then Breeders’ Cup day gives you the perfect opportunity to jump in and figure things out. On that day horses are shipping in from all over the world. The surface is changing for some, and the venue is changing for all except those based in Southern California since the Breeders’ Cup is at Santa Anita once again.

The pace scenario may be completely different than what the heavily bet horses have seen. Some runners have never been in a real big field. Others are losing their regular rider. The list of things to consider on Breeders’ Cup day is endless. It is a special day and even if you lose every race it will be fun by taking the approach that you intend to improve your game.

And who knows, maybe one of those bombs will fall your way. I hope I’m standing next to you when it does.

What It Takes for an East Coast Horse to Win at the Breeders’ Cup


Whatever the surface at Santa Anita, dirt or artificial, the locals have an advantage over all comers, especially the East Coast runners.

It’s been a long time since the Breeders’ Cup was held on the East Coast. Monmouth Park was the last East Coast track to host the Cup, and that was in 2007. In 2005 Belmont Park hosted the Cup, which was the last time the event was in New York. It’s been even longer since an East coast horse won a Breeders’ Cup race on the main track at Santa Anita. It’s been just as long since a horse made its last start on a New York main track and followed that with a Breeders’ Cup win on the main track at Santa Anita.

In 1986 Lady’s Secret won at Belmont and then won the Distaff at Santa Anita. The East Coast based Smile also took the Sprint that year. Since then, it’s been a lost cause for the East and New York’s main track runners when they head for the Cup at Santa Anita.

The Breeders' Cup at Santa AnitaThose recording Breeders’ Cup victories on the main track at Santa Anita have won on dirt and, in 2008 and 2009, won on the artificial surface (This year Santa Anita offers a traditional dirt surface). On either surface the nod goes to those based in Southern California. The Europeans have recorded some winners on the Arcadia main and there have been a few from mid-America. Whatever the surface at Santa Anita, dirt or artificial, the locals have an advantage over all comers, especially the East Coast runners.

Most patrons at a track play the game by examining data on paper and then make a bet. It’s like reading a brief news report in the newspaper and accepting the information as the entire story. And, most handicappers that play the game look at the numbers and a small amount of other numerical data and then they make a decision. Little thought is given to the other evidence.

“We have a tendency to think of these animals as machines, but they are living, breathing creatures, subject to the laws of nature,” said Jude Feld, former Southern California trainer and now a commentator on the Horse Racing Radio Network (HRRN). The thoroughbreds are not machines and the people that handle them are imperfect because they are human. That really throws a monkey wrench into any analysis, especially for those that don’t believe horse playing is truly a game of skill.

Feld was asked for his thoughts about the lack of East Coast winners on Santa Anita’s main surface over the years that the Breeder’s Cup has been contested there. He noted three major reasons; pace, travel and weather. “When it comes to pace, California horses are trained to run from the bell,” Feld said.  “There is a great difference in training between the East Coast and West Coast. The East Coast is laid back. ‘Let ’em settle and have ’em finish’ is the accepted thought on the East Coast,” Feld explained. “On the West Coast trainers drill the hell out their horses. Their short works are fast – under :35, under :47 and under a minute.”

Feld said that top West Coast trainer Bob Baffert had a lot to do with the training style in California. “Baffert came in from the Quarterhorse world and won everything. His horses worked fast. That forced everyone else to train similarly or lose their clients – a very interesting dynamic.”

As far as travel is concerned it is much harder to travel east to west. Many people claim this is true in other sports such as baseball and football. “The human and equine genome is relatively close. Light regulates clock genes, so it would behoove trainers to get their runners out in the light as much as possible in their first few days. Early shipping would also aid their cause,” Feld explained.

Usually the weather has plenty to do with racing and most of us first think of rain and wet tracks. But when the Breeders’ Cup heads west there are other meteorological considerations. Feld explained the most important weather factor to consider the first Saturday in November. “Fall has definitely hit the Midwest and East Coast, yet it is much warmer in Southern California [than usual].  Eastern horses will have been growing winter coats and adjusting to cool weather (30s in the morning back east) and are suddenly thrust back into summer.” Readjusting to the weather is also another reason for shipping early.

This year give more thought to the other factors in thoroughbred racing, not just the printed numbers and the name of the jockey. Remember, horse playing is an art and a game of skill. It is not for those that guzzle free casino drinks and pull the handle of a slot machine watching their money disappear.