Breeders Cup 2021
Author: Jordan Yates (EvRacing_)
A warm welcome to the blog as ever, where in this one I’m going to be giving you a guide to this year’s renewal of the Breeders Cup Classic. The Breeders Cup Classic is the feature of the Breeders Cup meeting and is set to take place at Del Mar this year at around 12:40am UK time, so that’s past midnight, not in the afternoon. The race is a Grade 1 affair that’s contested on a dirt surface over a distance of a mile and two furlongs. In recent years the race has been claimed by superstars like American Pharoah and Arrogate.
Heading the market of this year’s race is Knicks Go, who’s trained by Brad Cox and is set to be ridden by Joel Rosario, the five-year-old front-runner is currently trading at around the 9/4 mark and is a favourite amongst fans. He won the Dirt Mile at last year’s Breeders Cup and arrives here off the back of three straight victories, which include two Grade 3 successes as well as a Grade 1 win in the Whitney Stakes at Saratoga. If getting an easy time of it out in front they could find it hard to peg him back. Currently trading as the second favourite in this year’s renewal of the race is the Godolphin trained three-year-old Essential Quality, who’s also trained by Brad Cox and is to be ridden by Luis Saez. He was sent off the favourite for this year’s Kentucky Derby but fell a bit short of expectations when finishing fourth behind Medina Spirit. Since then though he hasn’t looked back, winning his next three starts which include two Grade 1s in the Travers and Belmont Stakes and looks a serious contender to take the big one here.
Moving onto the rest of the field, the first horse we should take a look at is the now somewhat infamous Medina Spirit for Bob Baffert and John Velazquez. Who’s Kenutcky Derby win was clouded over with substance related controversy. He’s still a very smart horse though, and has since added another Grade 1 to his CV when winning the Awesome Again Stakes last time out at Santa Anita. Also coming into the race off the back of Grade 1 success is Hot Rod Charlie for Doug O’Neil and Flavien Prat, he can currently be found trading at around 5/1 and was last seen when taking the Pennsylvania Derby. Following the this trend is Max Player and Art Collector, who between them arrive here on the back of five consecutive victories within graded company and can be found at 9/1 and 10/1 in the betting respectively. All in all, a fascinating renewal of this historic and prestigious affair.
In my opinion I think this is a real top renewal of the race, of which I’m going to side with my old friend Knicks Go getting the job done and signing out on a high. I tipped him up on here last year when he was successful in the Dirt Mile and his rise to the top since being under Brad Cox has been meteoric. As ever, he’ll go from the front and on this tight track I think that once again his rivals could well struggle to peg him back. His stablemate Essential Quality is likely to be his main danger, and I think he’ll chase him home.