The Breeders Cup Turf, run over 1m4f, invariably attracts the top middle distance talent from Europe and North America. Indeed, European trainers have saddled seven of the last ten winners and are well represented in this year’s renewal (10.22pm GMT, Saturday at Santa Anita, USA).
Following the defection of last year’s winner, Magician, Aidan O’Brien relies on Chicquita (12/1), for whom he has secured the services of Frankie Dettori. The Montjeu filly won the Irish Oaks at the Curragh last July, despite hanging badly left in the closing stages and again showed wayward tendencies when effectively throwing away the British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes at Ascot two weeks ago.
Chicquita has 7¼ lengths to find with Flintshire on their running in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp earlier this month and, while she may prove better suited by faster underfoot conditions than Andre Fabre’s charge, she’s hard to fancy for win purposes.
Andre Fabre’s Flintshire (11/4) heads the market on the strength of his two-length second behind Treve in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. That is undoubtedly the best single piece of form on offer. However, the Dansili colt has been beaten on all six starts since impressively winning the Grand Prix de Paris as a three-year-old and, having done all his winning on good going, may be vulnerable once again.
Like Aidan O’Brien, Sir Michael Stoute (pictured) has won the Breeders’ Cup four times and this year relies on Telescope (11/4), a four-year-old who hasn’t achieved as much as once seemed likely. That said, the form of his 7-length win the Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot on good to firm going is hard to fault. He also has creditable placed efforts behind Noble Mission, Taghrooda and Australia and he makes by far the most appeal of the foreign challengers.
Main Sequence (7/1), who was beaten on all three starts at the highest level when trained by David Lanigan, has proved something of a revelation since being transferred to US-based Englishman Graham Motion in July.
The five-year-old clearly had quirks when in England but looks transformed since crossing the pond, winning all three of his races at Grade 1 level at Monmouth Park, Saratoga and Belmont Park. In so doing, he has not only forged an excellent relationship with jockey Rajiv Maragh, but he has also demonstrated a liking for rattling fast ground, which could be the key to his chance.
Hardest Core (11/1) readily beat Magician by a length in the Arlington Million Stakes, over 1 mile 2 furlongs, in August on his first attempt at Grade 1 level and, with winning form over 1m4f on firm going, clearly commands respect. He returns from a 77-day break, but could still be open to further improvement after just six career starts and makes significant appeal at the odds on offer.
There is no doubt Brown Panther (14/1) will have his regular loyal band of supporters, especially after his demolition of Leading Light in the Irish St Leger over 1m6f. That was arguably the best form of his career but the other jockeys gave him too much rope in the lead and he may be flattered. This higher class, shorter trip and tighter track are against him. You can’t blame connections for taking their chance and he will need to be ridden as positively here as he was in Ireland to stand any chance in this better class.
Breeders Cup Turf Betting Tips Advice
Main Sequence and Hardest Core head a strong home contingent. Certainly master-trainer Graham Motion, who handled the career of Kentucky Derby and Dubai World Cup hero Animal Kingdom, seems to have improved Main Sequence since the switch to his yard. Motion knows what it takes to win at this meeting.
- However Telescope has raced with distinction against some of the best middle distance horses in Europe this season and deserves to win a major prize. Our betting tips advice is to back TELESCOPE to win at best odds of 11/4 with Bet365, in the expectation that he can become Sir Michael Stoute’s fifth winner of the Breeders’ Cup Turf.