ARCADIA, Ca. -- The undercard on Breeders' Cup (BC) Saturday includes a number of talented thoroughbreds, including a first glimpse at some top European turf horses looking to bring the large purses back overseas. With nine total Breeders' Cup races on tap for Saturday afternoon, there's a full schedule of betting opportunities for your friendly, neighborhood horseplayer.
Be sure to check tomorrow's print editions of The News for my advance on the $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic and the star-studded field of 14 that will head to the gate in prime time tomorrow night. Post time for the Classic is 8:35 p.m. ET. I'll be live on the Fan (1270 AM) this afternoon at 1:30 p.m. with some thoughts on Saturday's major race.
Let's play a little $0.50 Pick-4 with the four BC races into the Classic.
$3 million Longines Turf (Race 9, 6:22 p.m. ET) 1 1/4-miles on the turf for 3-year-olds and upward. With the defection of last year's winner Magician earlier in the week, it looks like it’s down to the overseas shippers in the $3 million Turf. 1-Telescope (7-2) looks to be the real deal and races with lasix for the first time, always a good angle with the Euros. 7-Flintshire (3-1) has raced against tough Group 1 company in France finishing second by two lengths to Treve in the Arc. The Graham Motion-trained 12-Main Sequence (9-2) raced last year in England and has not lost in his three starts in the States. Johnny V has the ride on the Aldebaran gelding. We'll go three deep (1,7,12) in the Pick-4 and play a saver win bet on long shot 9-Hardest Core (10-1), this year's Arlington Million winner.
Post Time Outlook: 1-Telescope, 2-Flintshire, 3-Main Sequence, 4-Hardest Core
$1.5 million Xpressbet BC Sprint (Race 10, 7:01 p.m. ET) Six furlongs on the dirt for 3-year-olds and up. This is the race that usually shoots down my Pick-4, so be prepared to go deep with reliance on the Euros in the turf races in the sequence. 6-Rich Tapestry (5-1) has faced the toughest competition facing difficult fields in the Hong Kong Sprint Cup at Sha Tin and Dubai Golden Shaheen (finishing second) at Meydan. 5-Private Zone (6-1) has taken on all comers on both coasts and has three seconds in four tries at Santa Anita. Defending winner 4-Secret Circle (9-2) could be rounding into form at just the right time, second off the layoff for Bob Baffert, who has back-to-back Sprint titles on his resume with Midnight Lute. Our long shot play is 11-Bakken (10-1) with veteran Gary Stevens aboard for Chad Brown. We'll throw in closer 9-Salutos Amigos (6-1) in case there is a pace meltdown for a price. So five deep in the Pick-4 (4,5,6,9, 11).
Post Time Outlook: 1-Rich Tapestry, 2-Private Zone, 3- Secret Circle, 4-Bakken
$2 million BC Mile (Race 11, 7:40 p.m. ET) One mile on the turf for 3-year-olds and upward. With the injury to two-time Mile winner and Horse of the Year Wise Dan, the field swelled to 14 horses, including several top European entrants. Sign me up for 5-Toronado (5-2), the multiple-Group 1 winner running on lasix for the first time for conditioner Richard Hannon. He's a potential single in the Pick-4 sequence. This is your classic box the Euros race. My long shot in here is 3-Veda (12-1), a 3-year-old getting a six-pound weight break from his elders. We'll throw in 8-Trade Storm (12-1), the Woodbine Mile winner and 9-Anodin (6-1) for Freddie Head in our four horse exacta box. For Pick-4 purposes we'll go with 3,5.
Post Time Outlook: 1-Toronado, 2-Veda, 3-Trade Storm, 4-Anodin
Post Time $0.50 Pick-4 (Race 9): 1,7,12/4,5,6,9,11/3,5/6,8,11 (Cost = $45)
Gene Kershner, a Buffalo-based turf writer, is a member of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association, and tweets @EquiSpace.