Breeders Cup: A look at the Juvenile
By The Rex Factor
Breeders Cup with only one European 2-year old in this race, and an outclassed one in Waterloo Bridge (14), it’s a matter of whether you believe in the prep races in California, Kentucky or New York having the most merit in deciding the likely 2-year old champion. Somehow (I’ve got a journalism degree and spent an hour looking it up, and still, no clue) they allowed 16 entries into this race and all of them plan to start. Does Keeneland have a gate to hold 16 horses? I think no; they’ll be trotting out the auxiliary gate. You don’t scratch also-eligibles the day OF the race, do you?
The one wild card here? It’s Riker (2), who ships in off a win on the Woodbine synthetic surface on Oct. 4 in a Grade III race. Usually, that’s cause for dismissal but horses running their first race elsewhere after a Woodbine race have been winning at a mysteriously high clip in the last month or so. Keep an eye on the toteboard.
Let’s examine the Kentucky horses first, since they’ve run a recent local race. Brody’s Cause (7) came from the clouds to win the BC Futurity four weeks back to open the Keeneland meet and earn his way in here. Rated R Superstar (6) ran out of gas there, finishing behind the winner and Exaggerator (9) in the BC Futurity four weeks back at Keeneland, with Brody’s Cause coming from last in the 11-horse field to run them all down in the final sixteenth. Those who like any of those three will likely be inclined to support all of them. Another one worth mentioning in this bunch is Unbridled Outlaw (4), who got an absolutely horrible trip in the Iroquois at Churchill Downs in mid-October. He had to check twice and lost several lengths when doing so the first time, yet still lost by just a length to Rated R Superstar. Maybe he’s the best of all the hopes that have been running Kentucky?
Nyquist (13) will likely get the most attention of the horses who have been running in California. He is unbeaten out there, winning two Grade I’s with Swipe (12) running second to him both times. One word of caution: the Cal shippers are 0-for-the-last-5 Juveniles run in Kentucky (to win).
The Champagne has proven over the year to be the key prep, producing the most winners (eight) for this race. In from that race is Greenpointcrusader (3), who beat Grade I winner Ralis (10) and outsider Tale of S’avall (8) in that one. Both were favored over the winner in that race before disappointing when finishing out of the money.
Keep an eye on the toteboard; 11 favorites and seven second-choices have won this race, and NINE straight favorites have ran first or second.
Please read our latest article, a Preview of the Breeders’ Cup .
What to know: Race 9 on the card; it’s the seventh of the nine Saturday Breeders’ Cup races at Keeneland
Post time: 4:10 p.m. EDT
Purse: $2 million
Distance: 1 1/16 miles
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