Here it is! The annual ‘Breeders’ Cup invocation’. These 2 days offer unique opportunities with chances to be rewarded for creative thinking and audacious risk-taking. Some will come away delighted and some maddeningly frustrated, but all should approach these races as the curious and challenging puzzles they’ve become. No matter how well you ‘handicap’ the races, fields (and course conditions) this deep and mysterious will produce several nearly unforeseeable results. Remember that you could be taking an ‘0-fer’ well into Saturday and get it all back (and more) in the weekend’s waning moments. But no matter how the ledger looks when it’s over, appreciate that your ability as a horseplayer won’t be defined over the course of 2 days. Spend as freely as you can affordband here’s hoping that everyone nets something that fills their account and makes them proud.

For the 13th year in a row, it’s been a pleasure bringing the Cup to everyone listening. I hope the 15 hours here and the time leading up offered each of you something you can convert into winning tickets. Thanks to Churchill Downs, Breeders’ Cup, ATR sponsors, regulars and everyone who contributed so generously to the shows and most importantly, the listeners.. Let’s get lucky this weekend!

1st: OC/N3X, F&M-3+, 8.5f (P5, P3, DD, Jackpot Hi-5)

Nearly no speed here at all..

Most Likely: #1 Mo’s M V P 7-2 4th
Next Best: #3 Stronger Than Ever 4-1 2nd
Exotics Use: #5 Enthrall 5-2 6th
Super Add: #2 Sweet Legacy 7-2 5th

2nd: MSW, 2yo, 6f (P4, P3, DD, Jackpot Hi-5)

Looks like a group that could be productive going forward..

Most Likely: #8 Straight Shot 6-1 3rd
Best Value: #9 Gray Attempt 12-1 4th
Next Best: #2 Admire 6-1 5th
Exotics Use: #6 Captain Von Trapp 2-1 2nd

3rd: OC/N2X, 3+, 1m (P3, DD, Jackpot Hi-5)

Race that renders the early P4/P5 as nearly unplayable. At least 7 of them can win..

Most Likely: #1 Casses Story 5-1 6th
Best Value: #10 Sharehiolder Value 10-1 3rd
Next Best: #8 Patch 3-1 7th
Exotics Use: #3 Heavy Roller 10-1 5th

4th: Street Sense, 2yo, 1m (P6, P3, DD, Jackpot Hi-5)

Baffert got off to a good start at session with Mother Mother winning the filly counterpart event to this with Mother Mother and Improbable looks poised to follow suit..

Most Likely: #2 Improbable 5-2 WON ($3.80)
Best Value: #5 Moonster 8-1 7th
Next Best: #3 Trophy Chaser 3-1 2nd
Exotics Use: #8 Louder Than Bombs 8-1 6th

5th: BC Juvenile Turf Sprint, 2yo, 5.5f-T (P5, P3, DD, Jackpot Hi-5)

First turf event of the Cup and there is simply no way to know what we’re going to get. The pristine inside part of the course may be boggy and the outer paths are a mangled mix of dead grass. The Euro jocks told Nick Luck that the course was heavy and inconsistent in softness, so expect some horses to get mired or lose their action in spots. Figure yielding/soft designation today and look for horses that have shown an ability to get over different designations of turf..

The fact that Soldier’s Call faced elders in the Prix de l’Abbaye is just one element of his appeal here. He’s seasoned, gotten over all kinds of ground, can lead or sit up close and has made a positive impression in his time here including a blast out of the gate on Tuesday. Stillwater Cove gets back to a sharp sprint after the Natalma mile experiment proved out of her reach. Irad back aboard and their effort in the Bolton Landing would fit well here. Bulletin was mighty impressive breaking maiden for TPletch and looks like a colt that can go or stalk and lands Castellano. By City Zip, should handle the unsure footing. Both 12-1, So Perfect & Well Done Fox are experienced imports that have kept good company..

Most Likely: #2 Soldier’s Call 9-2 6th
Best Value: #4 Stillwater Cover 20-1 10th
Next Best: #5 Bulletin 10-1 WON ($10.60)
Exotics Use: #10 So Perfect 12-1 3rd
Super Add: #3 Well Done Fox 12-1 11th

6th: BC Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1), 2yo-F, 1m-T (P4, P3, DD, Jackpot Hi-5, H2H)

H2H: USA (1$13.00) vs Europe (2)

Newspaperofrecord an acclimation horse for most off sparkling Spa debut and dazzling Miss Grillo. Further confidence comes from fact those wins came over yielding surfaces. She drew well while potential upsetters did not and with tricky reads coming after this event, she makes sense as a multi-race single. Plenty of fun horses to include underneath including My Gal Betty who is being largely ignored. East won’t be 20-1 despite the 14 hole. Concrete Rose saves all the ground under Lezcano. Baltas was desperate to get Lady Prancealot into this race..

Most Likely: #6 Newspaperofrecord 2-1 WON ($3.20)
Best Value: #13 My Gal Betty 20-1 8th
Next Best: #1 Concrete Rose 6-1 9th
Exotics Use: #14 East 20-1 2nd
Super Add: #11 Lady Prancealot 30-1 14th

7th: BC Juvenile Fillies (G1), 2yo-F, 8.5f (P4, P3, DD, Jackpot Hi-5)

Bellafina the first of 8 first or second ML choices widely drawn this weekend with (#14/14 Anthony Van Dyck, #13/14 Marley’s Freedom, #10/10 Catalina Cruiser, #9/9 Roy H, #10/10 Monomoy Girl, #12/13 Waldgeist & #14/14 Accelerate. Has clear paper edge on this group coming in, but reminds me of Bolt d’Oro going into last year’s Juvenile. Expect Prat to be more conscious of ground loss than Nakatani was, but there’s also the matter of at least 2-3 inside speeds to deal with. Can win of course, but feels very shaky. Hernandez moved too soon on Restless Rider in the Spinaway, a lesson he applied immediately in the Alcibiades. Can sit behind the speeds and move as she did in her Debutante win here in June. Reflect offers value as filly that moved forward first time around 2 turns, a feature that Dueling carries later in the Juvenile Boys. (He drew the #1 too)..

Most Likely: #4 Restless Rider 9-2 2nd
Next Best: #10 Bellafina 2-1 4th
Best Value: #1 Reflect 15-1 9th
Exotics Use: #7 Jaywalk 7-2 WON ($13.00)
Super Add: #2 Serengeti Empress 7-2 7th

2-day DBL:

J-Fillies: 4-10 (A), 1-7 (B), 2-3-8 (C)
Distaff: 2 (A), 1-11 (B), 5-7-10 (C)

8th: BC Juvenile Turf (G1), 2yo, 1m-T (P3, DD, J-Turf/Turf DBL, Jackpot Hi-5, H2H)

H2H: USA (1) vs. Europe (2$21.00)

Anthony Van Dyck has a significant form edge on this field and while some of that edge may be muted by the extreme draw, you get Ryan Moore to figure out a trip. I’m sticking with him as the top choice with the thought that he will be under-bet in reaction to the post. If he pays $10.80, it will feel like stealing money. Line of Duty a viable alternative to the top tab and U.S. hopes rest well with Uncle Benny & Forty Under..

Most Likely: #14 Anthony Van Dyck 4-1 9th
Next Best: #5 Line of Duty 10-1 WON ($9.00)
Best Value: #2 Uncle Benny 15-1 2nd
Exotics Use: #4 Forty Under 5-1 6th
Super Add: #12 Current 5-1 7th

2-day DBL:

J-Turf: 5-14 (A), 2-4 (B), 7-10-12 (C)
Turf: 2 (A), 4-12 (B), 5-7-11 (C)

9th: BC Juvenile Turf (G1), 2yo, 8.5f (DD, Juvy-Classic DBL, Jackpot Hi-5, H2H)

H2H: Complexity (1) vs. Game Winner (2$14.00)

This look to come down to a showdown between Baffert (Game Winner) & Brown (Complexity), but Hollendorfer (Dueling/Gunmetal Gray) is in position to pounce should both falter. Complexity may have a tactical edge, but he’s going to try to win on the front end, he’ll be tested every single jump. Wild card exotics invaders abound at bonus mutuels here including Mr. Money (30-1), Topper T (30-1) and Well Defined (20-1)..

NOTE: Code of Honor has SCR’d with a temperature..

Most Likely: #9 Game Winner 8-5 WON ($4.00)
Next Best: #6 Complexity 5-2 10th
Best Value: #1 Dueling 20-1 6th
Exotics Use: #8 Standard Deviation 12-1 13th
Super Add: #2 Mr. Money 30-1 4th

2-day DBL:

Juvenile: 6-9 (A), 1-8 (B), 2-5-13 (C)
Classic: 6-7-11 (A), – (B), 9-10-14 (C)

P5 Grid:

5: 2-4-5 (A), – (B), 3-8-10 (C)
6: 6 (A), – (B), 1-13-14 (C)
7: 1-4-10 (A), – (B), 2-7-8 (C)
8: 5-14 (A), 2-4 (B), 7-10-12-13 (C)
9: 6-9 (A), 1-8 (B), 2-5-13 (C)

Simple (A+B): 3x1x3x4x4 = 144 x .50 = $72
All A’s: 3x1x3x2x2 = 36 x .50 = $18

$0.50 Pick-5 (5/6,15,16/7/5/9,11) Paid $627.40 (A-A-C-A-A)

P4 Grid:

6: 6 (A), – (B), 1-13-14 (C)
7: 1-4-7-10 (A), 2-3-8 (B), – (C)
8: 2-5-14 (A), 4-12 (B), 7-10 (C)
9: 6-9 (A), 1-8 (B), 2-5-13 (C)

Simple (A+B): 1x7x5x4 = 140 x .50 = $70
All A’s: 1x4x3x2 = 24 x .50 = $12

$0.50 All A’s Pick-4 (6,15,16/7/5/9,11) Paid $91.40

10th: Marathon (G2), 3+, 14f (Jackpot Hi-5)

Brendan Walsh IS the Marathon Man..

Most Likely: #8 Honorable Duty 4-1 6th
Best Value: #7 Big Dollar Bill 5-1 3rd
Next Best: #10 Rocketry 7-2 WON ($6.60)
Exotics Use: #2 Dabster 9-2 2nd

P4 Grid:

7: 4-10 (A), – (B), 1-7 (C)
8: 2-5-14 (A), 4-12 (B), 7-10 (C)
9: 6-9 (A), – (B), 1-8 (C)
10: 7-8-10 (A), 1-2-5-6-9 (B), – (C)

Simple (A+B): 2x5x2x8 = 160 x .50 = $80
All A’s: 2x3x2x3 = 36 x .50 = $18

$0.50 Pick-4 (7/5/9,11/3,10) Paid $199.60 (C-A-A-A)