My Breeders' Cup Mile Picks

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D.S. Williamson

October 26th, 2018

After winning the Woodbine Mile, Oscar Performance jumped to the top of most Breeders' Cup Mile lists. Makes sense because the Brian Lynch trained colt has won 8-of-14 and over $2.3 million. Oscar Performance does make my Top 4.

But, just like I did with the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf, I'm going heavy with the European shippers to win the Mile. In a way, it makes sense. What else can I do when 9 of the 14 likely entrants were bred overseas?

3 Euros and Oscar Performance

1. Expert Eye

Sir Michael Stoute trains Expert Eye, the Group 3 Jersey Stakes winner at Royal Ascot earlier this year. The lone knock is that Expert Eye's never won a Group 1 race. That doesn't bother me at all. The two horses he finished behind in the Group 1 Prix du Moulin de Longchamp would be odds on in this.

Recoletos, the Prix du Moulin winner, would have the BC Mile field over a barrel while the second place finisher in that race, Wind Chimes, is one of the best horses in the world. Michael Stoute isn't a knight just because he's friends with Queen Elizabeth. He's a knight because for decades he's been one of the top horse trainers in the world.

Expert Eye's one of the my top plays on Nov. 3. Right now, he's my single on all exotic tickets.

2. Polydream

Sired by Oasis Dream and trained by Freddie Head, Polydream finished 7th behind One Master in the Group 1 Qatar Prix de La Floret. Of the two, One Master should get the bulk of the betting dollars on Saturday, which means Polydream goes off a big overlay.

The 3-year-old filly won the Group 1 Prix Maurice de Gheest over James Garfield and The Tin Man. The Tin Man cam right back to win his next race while every horseplayer who follows European racing knows how good James Garfield can be.

If we throw out her last, she should be right there in the end. I might talk myself to putting Polydream on top in a few exotics.

3. Lightning Spear

Lightning Spear beat Expert Eye to win the Qatar Sussex. It was a close to amazing win because the 7-year-old horse had to split and then accelerate to get past Expert Eye. Lightning Spear has a shot if Expert Eye doesn't fire his best, but Lightning Spear doesn't often win races anymore.

Much respect goes to this $1.8 million winner. I'm not sure he'll fire his best at Churchill Downs, though.

4. Oscar Performance

The Woodbine Mile's a Grade 1 race, but I'm not sure how strong it was. Oscar Performance took the lead and coasted through a :24.60 first-quarter and :48.78 half. The horses chasing him aren't close to the same quality as Expert Eye, Polydream, and Lightning Spear.

So, even though Oscar Performance is undefeated at a mile on turf, it's asking a lot of him to beat the 3 monsters I've got in the trifecta. He could surprise. More than likely, he hangs on for 4th while Polydream, Expert Eye, and Lightning Spear battle it out to the wire.