With the first Breeders’ Cup race less than 24 hours away, here are five longshots to consider when placing your wagers on the championship races!
Juvenile Turf: Highland Sky
It could be easy to overlook this Barclay Tagg-trained son of Sky Mesa, but I think Highland Sky has a very strong chance to win. After winning his debut at Saratoga with an impressive late run, he finished fourth in the Pilgrim Stakes (gr. III) at Belmont despite getting stopped repeatedly in the homestretch. I think he was the best horse in that race, and drawing post five in the Juvenile Turf will hopefully enable him to save some ground. If he can find a seam turning for home, I think he has a big chance of winning at 30-1.
Dirt Mile: Red Vine
Liam’s Map will be the heavy favorite, and deservedly so, but don’t underestimate the chances of Red Vine. He was compromised in both the Salvator Mile (gr. III) and Kelso Handicap (gr. II) by chasing lonely leaders through modest fractions, and the two-turn nature of the Dirt Mile should suit him perfectly. Additionally, he’s drawn post one, which should enable him to save some ground over a track that seemed to be favoring inside runners on Thursday. He’s not a huge price on the morning line, but if he upsets Liam’s Map, that could result in some very big payoffs for the multi-race wagers.
Juvenile Fillies Turf: Gliding By
She was spectacular in her debut at Woodbine, rallying from nearly nine lengths back at the quarter pole to win going away by two lengths. She ran her final two furlongs that day in a rapid :23 flat, and what’s even more impressive is that runner-up Conscription wasn’t stopping in the homestretch–she actually looked home-free with a furlong to go. If Gliding By repeats this performance on Friday, or takes a step forward, I think she’s absolutely in the mix for victory at a huge price.
She ran very well in the Spinster Stakes (gr. I) to finish third by a neck after dueling for the lead throughout, and after turning in a pair of spectacular five-furlong workouts at Keeneland (click here to watch them), it’s clear that she’s thriving in the lead-up to the Distaff, and I think she’s ready for a career-best effort and could score a shocking upset at 20-1 or so.
Curalina is another that could be overlooked off her runner-up effort in the Beldame Stakes (gr. I), but she had little chance in that race after stumbling at the start and conceding an easy lead to Wedding Toast. With a more contentious pace expected on Friday, Curalina could be one to take advantage and rally from off the pace to secure a spot in the exotics, or even win the race.
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