How to bet the Jockey Club Gold Cup

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

September 27th, 2018

Diversify wins the Whitney Handicap (G1) (c) NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography

A fascinating field of eight will go 1 1/4 miles in Saturday’s $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) at Belmont Park. The octet features the defending champ as well as a trio of accomplished horses who got their foundation in Europe. A Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) berth awaits the winner of the “Win & You’re In” event.

Here’s the field:

CARLINO (#1) (30-1) – Mark Hennig trainee gets the rail coming off an allowance score at Saratoga. Lemon Drop Kid gelding ran evenly in the Brooklyn (G2) at 1 1/2 miles in a prior graded run and might get a share today.

GRONKOWSKI (#2) (4-1)Belmont Stakes (G1)-placed sophomore disappointed in the Travers (G1) most recently. Chad Brown pupil has trained well in the interim and is a proven commodity over Big Sandy.

MENDELSSOHN (#3) (7-2) – Grade 1 turf hero ran a big second in the Travers and will have his final prep for the Breeders’ Cup Classic in this spot. Blue-blooded son of Scat Daddy retains Euro-based pilot Ryan Moore.

PATCH (#4) (20-1) – Todd Pletcher pupil exits a decent fifth in the Woodward (G1) but has yet to prove he is a contender at the Grade 1 level. Luis Saez has the assignment.

UNO MAS MODELO (#5) (30-1) – Macho Uno gelding comes off a pair of fine sprint outings at Saratoga, but this is an awfully ambitious spot for the five-year-old.

DIVERSIFY (#6) (4-5) – Classy Rick Violette Jr. trainee rides in on a three-race win streak and is the one to beat. New York-bred son of Bellamy Road loves the surface with an 8-6-2-0 local line, and he is also two-for-two at 10 furlongs.

DISCREET LOVER (#7) (15-1) – Five-year-old son of Repent will go over the $1 million mark in career earnings with a top-three finish here. Durable sort has a knack of getting minor awards in the big ones and looms as an exotics type.

THUNDER SNOW (#8) (6-1) – Multiple Group 1 victor has a lot of class. But Helmet colt will have to prove to me that his front-running Dubai World Cup (UAE-G1) victory was not simply a product of riding a pronounced track bias. Godolphin homebred draws outside and brings world-class pilot Christophe Soumillon with him.


The pace of the race could be rapid, with Diversify, Thunder Snow and Mendelssohn all being speedy sorts. I believe that Diversify will run the other pair into the ground on his favorite surface, exposing each today.

Belmont Stakes runner-up Gronkowski figures to benefit most from a lively tempo from off the pace. And I think it will be a two-horse race in the final furlong.


$20 Ex Box 2-6 = $40
$5 Tri Key 2,6 with 2,6 with 1,4,7 = $30