Handicapping

Tips and picks for how to bet on Thorougbred horse racing

Full field set for Breeders' Futurity; Groupie Doll highlights TCA

Saturday's Grade 1, $400,000 Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland came up very contentious. The 1 1/16-mile event on Polytrack has attracted an overflow of 16 two-year-olds, but only 14 will be allowed to start and favoritism could fall to Pataky Kid following his victory in the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Futurity. Other legitimate contenders include Grade 2 With Anticipation Stakes winner Balance the Books; Grade 2 Summer runner-up Are You Kidding Me; Sunday Silence Stakes victor Java's War; and Tizracer, a recent 10 1/2-length maiden scorer for Todd Pletcher.

Wise Dan faces 11 in Shadwell; Daisy Devine seeks sweep in First Lady

Wise Dan is unquestionably one of America's best turf horses, posting impressive victories in the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile and Grade 2 Fourstardave Handicap in his last two starts, and the talented gelding looks poised to make a serious assault upon the November 3 Breeders' Cup Mile. He will receive his final tune-up in Saturday's Grade 1, $750,000 Shadwell Turf Mile, one of five graded stakes races on a strong Keeneland program.

Fed Biz, Grace Hall face competitive fields at Hoosier

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, who enjoyed success in the Grade 2 Indiana Derby two years ago with eventual three-year-old champion Lookin at Lucky, will seek to land Saturday's $500,000 renewal at Hoosier Park with the highly-regarded Fed Biz. The Corinthian colt had better bring his running shoes with him from Southern California as the 1 1/16-mile heat has attracted a deep, attractive field of 12.

Alternation faces six in Hawthorne Gold Cup

Alternation outbroke the rest of the older male division this year when capturing his first four starts. After falling behind the pack over the summer, the Pin Oak homebred will try and re-rally to catch up with the rest of the divisional heavyweights beginning with Saturday's Grade 2, $500,000 Hawthorne Gold Cup. The 1 1/4-mile test serves as Alternation's final tune-up for the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Classic.

Ascot announces Champions Day acceptors

The countdown to the second British Champions Day at Ascot on October 20 is now in full swing and the sense of anticipation ahead of British racing's richest day of the year steps up a gear Wednesday with the publication of the latest acceptors for the championship finales in each of the five categories of the British Champions Series.

Animal Kingdom aimed at Breeders' Cup Mile

Animal Kingdom will return to action in the Breeders' Cup Mile at Santa Anita on November 3 with a chance to become the first Kentucky Derby winner to go on to Breeders Cup glory since Unbridled in 1990.

Breeders' Cup releases wagering menu, post times

The Breeders' Cup on Tuesday announced the wagering menu and post times for the 29th Breeders' Cup World Championships, to be held November 2-3 at Santa Anita. This year's wagering menu on the 15 Breeders' Cup races features an abundance of betting opportunities including two all Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick Sixes, 10-cent Superfectas, 50-cent Trifectas, Pick 3s, Pick 4s and Pick 5s, a Ladies' Classic -- Breeders' Cup Classic Daily Double and two Super High 5 wagers.

Nathaniel latest Arc withdrawal

As expected, Sunday's Group 1 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe will not feature last year's winner Danedream, but there was another twist as Nathaniel was also ruled out Tuesday. Just hours after Germany's defending champion was scratched at the six-day forfeit stage due to the three-month quarantine of all horses based at the racecourse hit by a case of EIA in Cologne, dual Group 1 winner Nathaniel also went by the wayside after he was found to have a temperature.

Dawn Approach pleases Bolger ahead of Dewhurst

Dawn Approach on Tuesday morning warmed up for his Group 1, £300,000 Dewhurst engagement with a solid work-out under big-race jockey Kevin Manning. The unbeaten colt worked in company with fellow Dewhurst entry Leitir Mor over 5 1/2 furlongs at trainer Jim Bolger's Beechy Park in County Carlow.

Malibu Moon filly sells for $300,000 at F-T Midlantic

Ellen M. Charles purchased a Malibu Moon filly for the top price of $300,000 at Fasig-Tipton Midlantic's Eastern Fall Yearlings Sale, conducted in Timonium, Maryland, on Monday. Cataloged as Hip No. 81, the Virginia-bred was consigned by Charlton (Mr. and Mrs. Rick Abbott), agent for Audley Farm Equine.

Danedream unlikely for Arc after Cologne put under quarantine

In a strange twist of fate Monday, last year's Group 1 Prix de l'Arc de Triompge heroine Danedream was effectively ruled out of Sunday's renewal at Longchamp after a case of equine infectious anemia (EIA), or swamp fever, put Cologne racecourse under immediate quarantine.

Pataky Kid drills for Breeders' Futurity

Swifty Farms' Pataky Kid, winner of the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Futurity and undefeated in two starts on Polytrack, worked five furlongs in 1:00 3/5 on Monday in preparation for a run in Saturday's Grade 1, $400,000 Breeders' Futurity, a "Win and You're In" race for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile to be run November 3 at Santa Anita.

Overanalyze overcomes troubled start in Futurity

When the gate opened, Overanalyze was a bit tardy to move from post 4, then got bumped by Handsome Jack, who veered in from post 5. Meanwhile, as Overanalyze found himself lagging in the rear with John Velazquez, a contentious pace unfolded up front.

Slim Shadey turns in front-running exhibition in John Henry

The complexion of the John Henry changed early on, as the field crossed over the brief span of the main track before linking up with the turf course proper. When 3-2 favorite Turbo Compressor didn't sprint to the fore as expected, jockey Garrett Gomez called an audible and let Slim Shadey roll. The Simon Callaghan trainee never looked back.

Politicallycorrect goes to extremes to upset Oklahoma Derby

Ken and Sarah Ramsey's homebred Politicallycorrect rallied on the extreme outside to upset 2-1 favorite Willy Beamin in Sunday's $400,000 Oklahoma Derby at Remington Park. Hung out seven wide down the lane, the 10-1 chance came with an irresistible late charge beneath Kent Desormeaux to prevail in the shadow of the wire, snapping the favorite's six-race winning streak.

Catalano takes Arlington training title for 10th time

The 90-day meeting at Arlington Park ended Sunday, with trainer Wayne Catalano earning his 10th Arlington crown while jockey Francisco Torres and owners Midwest Thoroughbreds of Richard and Karen Papiese each took down their first Arlington title.

Karlovy Vary, Gold Edge post works at Keeneland

Alex Campbell Jr.'s Karlovy Vary, winner of the Grade 1 Ashland this spring, breezed a half-mile in :52 3/5 over Keeneland's Polytrack Sunday morning in preparation for next Sunday's 57th running of the Grade 1, $500,000 Spinster.

Kanaloa rules as Lord of the Sprinters

Second favorite Lord Kanaloa, ridden by Yasunari Iwata, exerted a strong late charge, despite the strong crosswind from the approaching typhoon, to capture his first Grade 1 victory in a course-record time of 1:06.7 in Sunday's Sprinters Stakes at Nakayama. His victory prevented stablemate Curren Chan from achieving her third consecutive Grade 1 sprint race victory.

Game on Dude solidifies role as Classic favorite in Awesome Again

Game on Dude did what was expected in his final tune-up for the Breeders' Cup Classic, posting an easy win in the Grade 1, $250,000 Awesome Again Stakes, and figures to be a definitive favorite over the same Santa Anita track on November 3. Favored at 1-5 over eight rivals on Saturday, the classy gelding provided Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert and jockey Rafael Bejarano with their third Grade 1 victory on the afternoon when cruising to a 3 1/4-length decision.

Power Broker breaks maiden in FrontRunner

The Bob Baffert trainee pressed the pace three wide as Know More, the 9-5 favorite, and another Baffert trainee, Carving, battled back and forth setting fractions of :23, :47 2/5 and 1:12 2/5. Once Power Broker took over the lead in the upper stretch, the race was over as the son of Pulpit drew clear under left-hand urging from rider Rafael Bejarano. He was able to go the 1 1/16 miles over the fast main track in 1:44 2/5.

Marketing Mix struts her stuff in Rodeo Drive

Glen Hill Farm's Marketing Mix was the class of the field in Saturday's Grade 1, $250,000 Rodeo Drive at Santa Anita, and it showed. Rallying from well off a blistering speed duel, the even-money favorite drew off imperiously and stamped herself as the leading domestic hope for the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf.

Love and Pride beats west's best in Zenyatta

Coming off a stunning upset of eastern heavyweights Royal Delta and It's Tricky in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign Handicap, Green Hills Farm's Love and Pride showed that win was no fluke by traveling to Santa Anita and knocking out the West Coast's leading older fillies and mares in Saturday's Grade 1, $250,000 Zenyatta.

Executiveprivilege dominates Chandelier, remains undefeated

Trained by Bob Baffert, Executiveprivilege sped between horses going straight to the rail and posted fractions of :23 4/5, :48 2/5 and 1:13 2/5. The two-year-old set a pressured pace, but started to pull away on the second turn, leaving her competition behind in her wire-to-wire win. She was able to cover the 1 1/16 miles over the fast main track in 1:44 4/5.

Nahrain survives inquiry to keep Flower Bowl

English shipper Nahrain knifed between the Chad Brown duo of Zagora and Dream Peace to get up late in Saturday's Grade 1, $600,000 Flower Bowl Invitational at Belmont Park, but the stewards wasted no time in posting the inquiry sign. Nahrain and 2-1 favorite Dream Peace had brushed as both launched their bids turning for home, and Dream Peace's hind end was knocked sideways. But the replay didn't conclusively prove fault, and the Darley Stable homebred was allowed to keep her victory, and its accompanying automatic berth to the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf.

Royal Delta claims Beldame crown in emphatic style

Royal Delta was back in top form in Saturday's Grade 1, $392,000 Beldame at Belmont Park, demolishing four opponents including arch-rival It's Tricky. Under Mike Smith, the Bill Mott-trained champion opened up a wide lead turning for home and crossed the wire 9 1/2 lengths in front as the 4-5 favorite. Royal Delta returned $3.70, $2.20 and $2.10.

The Lumber Guy strikes in Vosburgh

Barry Schwartz's homebred The Lumber Guy showed no signs of rust while returning from a 4 1/2-month layoff in Saturday's Grade 1, $400,000 Vosburgh Stakes, holding the fast-closing Caixa Eletronica safe in the latter stages for a 1 1/4-length score. He completed six furlongs in 1:09 1/5 on the "good" track at Belmont Park.

Jersey Town rolls past Shackleford in Kelso

Charles Fipke's Jersey Town out-staged notable rivals Shackleford and To Honor and Serve in the Grade 2, $400,000 Kelso Handicap at Belmont Park, driving to a convincing 3 1/2-length decision beneath Javier Castellano. The Barclay Tagg-trained horse snapped a 23-month losing streak in the process, notching his first victory since the Grade 1 Cigar Mile in 2010, and earned a berth to the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile where he will be a viable contender if he runs back to Saturday's performance.

Jockey Ouzts joins 6,000-win club

Jockey Perry Ouzts joined an elite group of riders Saturday when he rode Tanner Me Boy to a two-length victory in Turfway Park's 2ND race to notch his 6,000th career win.

Frankel blows away workmates

Sir Henry Cecil made a rare racecourse appearance to witness Frankel, the world's highest-rated racehorse, work over nine furlongs on the Rowley Mile ahead of his next, and most likely final, start in the Group 1 Champion Stakes at Ascot on October 20.

Steeler tackles Artigiano in Royal Lodge

Trained by Mark Johnston, the son of 2008 Breeders' Cup Classic winner Raven's Pass earned 10 points for the victory. Artigiano, by Distorted Humor, collected four points for second. 

Unbridled's Note captures Eddie D. in turf debut

Mike McCarty's Unbridled's Note had never raced on turf or faced older horses prior to Friday's Grade 3, $100,000 Eddie D. Stakes at Santa Anita, but the Steve Asmussen sophomore professionally handled a field of seasoned turf sprinters in the opening-day feature. The Unbridled's Song colt rallied late to overhaul the front-running Chosen Miracle, in a well-timed move worthy of the race's new honoree, retired Hall of Fame rider Eddie Delahoussaye. The Eddie D., formerly known as the Morvich, serves as a course-and-distance prep for the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint.

Half-brother to Big Brown entered in Royal Lodge

Saturday's Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes at Newmarket, the first race on the new "Road to the Kentucky Derby" scoring system, includes a half-brother to 2008 Kentucky Derby-winning champion Big Brown -- Afonso de Sousa. The son of Henrythenavigator is the lone entrant from the yard of Aidan O'Brien, who won last year's Royal Lodge with Daddy Long Legs and also finished third with Wrote.

Dodgers to host 'Breeders' Cup Night'

The Breeders' Cup and the Los Angeles Dodgers have announced that Monday is "Breeders' Cup Night" at Dodgers Stadium, in celebration of the upcoming World Championships at Santa Anita Park. The 7:10 p.m. (PDT) game will pit the Dodgers against the San Francisco Giants.

Certify dominates Fillies' Mile; Waterway Run punches BC ticket

Unbeaten Certify provided Godolphin with the team's third consecutive success in the Group 1 Fillies' Mile at Newmarket on Friday. White Moonstone and Lyric of Light have taken the mile event for the previous two years, but neither matched the style and panache of Certify's success.

Frankel to work at Newmarket Saturday

Sir Henry Cecil is eagerly anticipating bringing Frankel for a racecourse gallop at Newmarket before racing Saturday. The world's best Thoroughbred will be joined in the exercise by Bullet Train and Midsummer Sun as part of the unbeaten Galileo colt's preparations for the Group 1 Champion Stakes at Ascot on October 20.

Tampa Bay Downs releases stakes schedule

For the second meeting in a row, Tampa Bay Downs will run 25 stakes worth $2,595,000. The lucrative added-money slate is highlighted by the 33rd edition of the Grade 2, $350,000 Tampa Bay Derby, a 1 1/16-mile showcase for three-year-old Triple Crown candidates, on March 9.

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