The 1 1/8-mile inner turf test for 3-year-olds drew a compact field of six.
Tagg said he is confident that Nobiz Like Shobiz, a son of Albert the Great who competes in the colors of Elizabeth J. Valando, has the ability to run on the lawn.
“He has handled the turf as well as he could,” Tagg said. “I thought his ankles might feel a little better on the turf, so we breezed him on the turf a couple times and he seemed to do much better on it. We thought we’d give him a try.”
Nobiz's most recent workout on July 23 was a bullet five furlongs in :58 4/5, handily, on the Saratoga training turf course with jockey Cornelio Velasquez aboard.
In his first start since a 10th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby (gr. I), the colt took second in the Dwyer Stakes (gr. II) at Belmont Park on July 4. He finished four lengths behind Any Given Saturday and finished five lengths in from of third-place finisher Sightseeing, who came back to run third in the Jim Dandy (gr. II) at Saratoga on July 29.
“I thought he ran very well in the Dwyer,” Tagg said. “He lost to (Any Given Saturday), a very good horse, but I though he put in a great effort.”
Nobiz Like Shobiz has three graded stakes victories. He took the Wood Memorial by a half-length going nine furlongs at Aqueducton April 7, and also captured the Holy Bull Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 3 and the Remsen Stakes (gr. II) as a 2 year old.
Attempting to spoil Nobiz Like Shobiz’ turf debut will be Distorted Reality. The son of Distorted Humor is coming off a win in the Lexington Stakes at Belmont on July 8.
Since trying the turf for the first time on March 8, the Todd Pletcher-trained colt has continued to improve.
“He is much better on the turf,” jockey John Velazquez said. “He has definitely had some really good efforts. We found a good surface for him.”
In five turf starts, Distorted Reality has three wins and a second-place finish.
Marcavelly, the high weight at 122 pounds, has four wins in six tries on the turf, including two grade III victories. The son of Johannesburg is trained by Saratoga leading conditioner Bill Mott and will be ridden by Edgar Prado.
$150,000 National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. II, Race 8, 4:47 p.m.), 3-Year-Olds, 1 1/8 Miles (Inner Turf)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, ML Odds
1. Marcavelly (KY), Edgar S. Prado, 122, 2/1
2. Jazz Quest (IL), Julien R. Leparoux, 119, 12/1
3. Distorted Reality (FL), John R. Velazquez, 119, 5/2
4. Ambassador (GER), Alan Garcia, 115, 8/1
5. Sahara Heat (KY), Rafael Bejarano, 115, 12/1
6. Nobiz Like Shobiz (KY), Cornelio H. Velasquez, 115, 9/5