Hanson: Breeders' Cup Friday a card for action play

Profile Picture: Vance Hanson

November 2nd, 2016

The four Breeders' Cup races on Friday figure to offer great entertainment value, the Distaff (G1) in particular, but my stronger opinions and betting capital are generally saved for Saturday's blockbuster card. My general opinions on Friday's races are as follows:

Juvenile Turf (G1): A race Europeans (or those with European running lines) have dominated of late seems more likely to be taken by a domestic contender as the foreign contingent doesn't seem that strong this time around. Good Samaritan, the 9-2 second choice on the morning line, looked really sharp winning on debut at Saratoga followed by the Summer (G2) at Woodbine. He'll be my action win play.

Dirt Mile (G1): The general consensus is he doesn't look look quite as imposing on paper as Liam's Map did in this race a year ago, but Dortmund is closer to him than not in my estimation. His five career losses were won by just two horses -- American Pharoah and California Chrome -- thus he towers over these on class and with a Santa Anita mark of 6-5-1-0 to boot. It's not a race I plan on betting.

Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1): Unlike the Juvenile Turf, this race has several strong-looking European invaders in Roly Poly, Hydrangea, and Intricately, all trained by either Aidan O'Brien or his son, Joseph. I'll carefully watch for any overlaid odds on those three, but I've been taken thus far by the dazzling promise displayed by La Coronel. She'll have to be the juvenile filly version of Karakontie, who overcame post 14 to win the 2014 Mile here, but early indications are she could be the next big turf filly for the Mark Casse stable, following in the hoof steps of Tepin and Catch a Glimpse. She's likely my action win bet, with a possible side wager on one of that European trio if the price warrants.

Distaff: Perhaps a race to enjoy more as sport, but I do think Stellar Wind will offer value against the likes of Songbird and Beholder that will be hard to pass up. If the third betting choice, Stellar Wind will be my win play, and I'll play exactas with her on top over the the other two. A saver exacta of Beholder over Stellar Wind will also be under consideration. Early congratulations to Songbird if she pulls it off, and to Curalina, I'm a Chatterbox, and Forever Unbridled if they crash the frame without my support.

Any multi-race wagers I wind up playing will involve the above mentioned. The Breeders' Cup is a marathon, not a sprint, and I'll be saving most of my resources for Day 2.

Good luck!

(La Coronel: Coady Photography)