Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Future Look - BC Classic

I'm continuing my series on possible good future bets for the BC races or at least some horses to follow in the run up to the big event.

The Breeders' Cup Classic will be, in my opinion, a very different type of affair. The fact that the surface will be an All Weather one should seriously alter the type of horses who are successful and also the type of horses who are pointed to the race.

BC Classic

Heatseeker - He is the best All Weather horse in the nation. He performs at the highest level and is extremely consistent. He showed a new dimension in his latest start and I think as the year goes on he will confirm the form he showed. Tiago his arch rival is not included in my list at all only because I don't see anyway Heatseeker would lose to him in a race like this. He's got speed but prefers to come from off the pace. It's a deadly combination, he also owns the highest route Beyers earned at Santa Anita.

Einstein - He is one horse I like a bit for the BC turf but I put him barely in the top 10 for that race while the Classic looks right up his alley. 10f is his best distance and we know he's got an abundance of class. Turf horses have been quite successful switching over to the surface and we already know he handles dirt and Turf decently. Why not an all weather surface? Horses like Go Between and Heatseeker were turf horses at one point and Einstein looks 10 lengths better than that pair on the sod. If he takes to this surface at all and if his connections choose this race he could be a good thing.

Go Between - At one point earlier in this season it was wondered whether any horse could take him on an all weather surface. Of course Heatseeker then beat him in the Big Cap and has gone on to national prominence but Go Between nearly had him that day and many blamed the ride. He loves Santa Anita and despite the fact that we don't see him in action right now he still has a huge shot.

Well Armed - This is the most under rated speed horse in the nation. I'm sure there are a bunch who think that he's not up to winning a race like this but I see him as extremely dangerous. Let's not forget that he too matched up very favorably against Heatseeker in the spring and then went out and ran third in the Dubai World Cup. He was no match for Curlin but still it displayed a real usefulness and class. I suspect we'll see him in out of the way races like the San Diego instead of the Gold Cup or Pacific Classic but he ought to be the horse who controls the pace on BC day.

Big Brown - The aura of invincibility may be gone but he's still a dashed fine horse. He does not lay over the contenders here like did in the Triple Crown but you need to respect his talent. He's handled turf and dirt so most likely the surface is not a huge concern. The concern with him is will he come back to his best form and then will he also improve to the level he'll need to be at to beat the rest of these.

Colonel John - He looked second class on dirt in the Derby but he does love Santa Anita and rates a chance on the surface. He has loads of improvement to come, far more than Big Brown but he is the type of horse who could do it. The distance should not be a problem and he definitely has the breeding. His preparation for the Classic begins soon in the Swaps.

Henrythenavigator - There will likely be more Europeans than just this one coming over for the Classic but this one looks the best bet at this stage. Coolmore loves to have a tilt at the Classic with miler types and this horse looks truly special. He should get 10f with ease and we know he's got a great turn of foot and bags of class. All that remains to be seen is whether he likes the surface and whether or not connections choose this race over the Mile.

Out of Control - He is a bit of a "tweener" on the grass but would likely fit well in the Classic. He is still coming into his own and connections are just sort of finding out what he's best at. He has a good running style for the main track. It often sees him flat footed when it counts on the grass but it could serve him well on Cushion Track.

Georgie Boy - He was brilliant in the spring and although I doubt him at 10f he may be the kind of horse that gets more stamina as he matures. Of course coming back from injury is his main concern at this stage but he certainly rates a chance.

Curlin - Curlin would be at the head of this list if I thought there was a good chance he would run. He is the best horse in the world and would likely take to the surface and handle anyone who opposes him. However his connections are talking about avoiding the Classic and going for the Arc. I have him on the list because they still might have a change of heart. We don't know how the Turf experiment will play itself out it could be that plans for the Arc get scrapped and does wind up defending his title. He is too good a horse not to include in a list like this.

No comments: