| Mon 21/08/2017 - 06:13 EDT

Road To The Breeders Cup 2017: The BC Classic Is Up For Grabs

Breeders' Cup Classic Picture

As expected, the Pacific Classic at Del Mar told us much more about Arrogate and this year's classic division. For the second straight race, the once-dominant super horse was beaten.

This time the strapping gray improved off his fourth-place disaster in the San Diego to run second behind stablemate Collected. The race wasn't an abject failure, but this clearly isn't the same Arrogate we saw win the Travers, Breeders' Cup Classic, Pegasus World Cup and Dubai World Cup in succession. Something is amiss and suddenly the Breeders' Cup Classic is up for grabs.

Trainer Bob Baffert's post race comments on Arrogate suggest that they'll move forward with their plans to run the horse in the Classic, but it will be worth keeping an eye on Arrogate's training over the next two months. Any missteps or lethargic efforts could derail that plan quickly. Arrogate has fallen as far from grace in a two-race window as any horse in recent memory, but still isn't without a shot in the Classic. Regardless of what happens in the next two months, Arrogate will not be the favorite in the BC Classic - a thought that seemed inconceivable less than four weeks ago.

Collected Has Plenty of Appeal

With the division suddenly wide-open, Gun Runner is the horse to beat after dominant performances in the Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs and Whitney Handicap at Saratoga. Gun Runner will likely run once more at Saratoga before the Classic in the Grade 1 Woodward Stakes September 2.

Gun Runner will probably assume favoritism in the future wagers, but he will probably hold only the most narrow of margins over Collected who has now won four straight stakes races.

While the story was certainly Arrogate's failure to win in the Pacific Classic, stablemate Collected certainly stamped himself as a serious contender for the Breeders' Cup Classic with the win - his fourth straight and third consecutive stakes score. The handicapping certainty that Collected can handle the mile and a quarter trip and the Del Mar surface bodes extremely well for his chances in the Classic. It will be interesting to see what trainer John Sadler will do with Accelerate following his third-place finish in the Pacific Classic. The Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile certainly seems right up his alley.

Other Breeders' Cup Divisions

Sprint: Mind Your Biscuits, Roy H and Ransom the Moon seem to hold the edge in the sprint division with last year's champion Drefong leaving doubts as to whether he's the same horse he was in 2016. Baffert will try to tighten the screws on Drefong in the coming weeks, so following this four year-olds workout patterns will be interesting. Roy H has a scary amount of raw ability and will be a handful for anyone in this division. 

Distaff: The Distaffers are a deep and talented group. The Personal Ensign Stakes August 26 at Saratoga and the Zenyatta Stakes September 30 at Santa Anita will be important races to watch as divisional leaders Songbird and Stellar Wind could square off in the latter race. 

Turf: The American turf horses look ripe for the Euros to come in again and dominate. This is simply an average-looking group at best and Hunt's win in the Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap did little to suggest he's ready to take on the best 12 furlong horses in the world. Ditto for Beach Patrol, who won a less-than-impressive renewal of the Arlington Million August 12. The Sword Dancer August 26 at Saratoga will also probably not yield many clues.

Handicappers looking to gain insight into this division should begin to closely follow the intentions of the top Euro connections after the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe. Early names to know are Queen's Trust, Enable and Ulysses. 2016 BC Turf winner Highland Reel is also probable. 

Juvenile: This division has been slow to develop thus far, but the Del Mar Futurity September 4 could prove be the unveiling of the juvenile winner. Always an important race, this year's holds even more signficance for obvious reasons. For an off-the-radar type of horse, Dak Attack looked extremely talented winning the Ellis Park Juvenile August 20 in his second career start while beating Grade 3 Bashford Manor Stakes winner Ten City with ease. In addition a pair of Baffert runners - Zatter and St.Patrick's Day - looked like the rapidly improving types in a six furlong maiden race August 20. Zatter won by a length over St. Patrick's day who is a full brother to American Pharoah.

    Category : More news

    More articles...
    More news - 13/05/21
    Denise Coates among best-paid global executives 
    Denise Coates among best-paid global executives

    When it comes to the gambling world, countless folks have tried their luck at getting involved and having major success. With that said, has anyone made more of an impact than Denise Coates? The Bet365 founder has made an incredible impact in gambling and her worth is through the roof, with Denise Coates among best-paid global executives out there. In this piece, we take a look at her incredible journey. 

    More news - 11/05/21
    The Race To Legalize Single Bet Sports Betting 
    The Race To Legalize Single Bet Sports Betting

    Canada Sports Betting (Single-bet on sports) could become a real legal thing, but it's a race against time as the Senate must have the bill passed this spring or it could be another long wait. Bill C-218 could make online sports betting better and easier for Canadians, but time is of the essence as a looming election could once again postpone everything. 

    More news - 23/04/21
    Biggest Online Casino Welcome Bonsues 
    Biggest Online Casino Welcome Bonsues

    Welcome bonuses are a great way to start your out at an online casino – and you can find the biggest ones here!

    More news - 21/04/21
    Canadian Athletes Qualified to Tokyo 2020 
    Canadian Athletes Qualified to Tokyo 2020

    While the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo was postponed due to the Coronavirus, athletes from all over the world will be ready to rock this summer. The Olympics are set to start on July 23. Which Canadian Athletes Qualified to Tokyo 2020?

    In this piece, we take a look at those who will be representing Canada in the Olympics this summer. There are more than 200 participants who will be ready to compete in hopes of bringing back a medal to their home country. Who will be able to get that job done later this year? We can't wait to find out.