Learn more about 2012 Breeders Cup Picks.
Without question the most competitive race of the 2012 Breeders’ Cup World Championships is the Ladies Classic. The race is as deep as I can remember in the history of the event. Nine fillies and mares will compete for the top spot and every single one has a legitimate chance to win the $2 million 1 1/8 miles race.
AWESOME FEATHER (Awesome of Course x Precious Feather by Gone West) is a perfect 10 for 10, but has raced just four times in the past two years. Her best career win came when she took the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies over 11 other foes at Churchill Downs in 2010. Since then she has added the Grade 1 Gazelle Stakes to her resume. Her last out win against minor stakes company saw her draw away by 11 1/4 lengths while never feeling the whip and stopping the clock in 1:32 3/5 seconds for a mile. She’s freaky good and on her game. Chad Brown is the trainer.
Defending champion ROYAL DELTA (Empire Maker x Delta Princess by A.P. Indy) is the one to beat. She has looked even better this year than she did in 2011. I got to watch her Grade 2 Fleur de Lis from a suite at Churchill Downs and it’s easily one of the most impressive wins that I’ve personally witnessed. That’s saying something because I’ve been to the Breeders’ Cup many times in the past. Even better than that win was her last out triumph in the Grade 1 Beldame Invitational. She ran off to win by 9 1/2 lengths over Grade 1 winner It’s Tricky. If this Bill Mott trained filly brings her best race, then she is the most likely winner. Supporters might try keying her on exacta tickets.
QUESTING (Hard Spun x Chercheuse by Seeking The Gold) freaked to win the Grade 1 CCA Oaks by 4 1/4 lengths before smashing her Grade 1 Alabama Stakes competition by nine lengths. Look for her on or near the lead, as that is her style. Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin brings her to this race after losing the Grade 2 Cotillion Stakes by a nose. This filly is one of many that wouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. She has talent and speed; a deadly combination.
MY MISS AURELIA (Smart Strike x My Miss Storm Cat by Sea of Secrets) is undefeated with her latest victim being Questing in the Cotillion Stakes. Last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies winner has had an abbreviated sophomore campaign as this will be only her third race of the year. Still, her talent runs deep. Steve Asmussen is the trainer. Don’t be shocked if she stays undefeated after this race. Leave her off Pick 4 tickets at your own risk.
LOVE AND PRIDE (A.P. Indy x Ile de France by Storm Cat) will be a pace factor. The front running filly has been a new animal since Todd Pletcher removed her blinkers two starts ago. Since doing so she has won the Grade 1 Personal Ensign and the Grade 1 Zenyatta which took place over this track. Word on the street is that she is training up a storm at Santa Anita.
INCLUDE ME OUT (Include x Don’t Trick Her by Mazel Trick) is one of two fillies in this race to have captured a Grade 1 event over this surface as she won Santa Margarita back in March. Since then she has added a win in the Grade 1 Clement L. Hirsch to her resume. It looks like the Ron Ellis pupil is just a step below the likes of Royal Delta, but she does boast home field advantage. That means she has more than just a punchers chance.
GRACE HALL (Empire Maker x Season’s Greetings by Ezzoud) failed as the favorite in the Kentucky Oaks and Alabama Stakes this year. This will be her final chance to make amends on the big stage. She looks ready to give it her best shot after what is arguably the best race of her life in the Grade 2 Indiana Oaks. She dismissed four other foes while ridden out under Brian Hernandez. It will take a move forward for her to win, but she has enough pedigree and class to do this thing. Use her on the bottom of trifecta tickets.
Todd Pletcher’s second entry is IN LINGERIE (Empire Maker x Cat Chat by Storm Cat). She took her first Grade 1 on October 7 when she won Keeneland’s Spinster Stakes by two lengths. The bay filly is fabulously bred for the distance and looks to be coming into her best race yet. Look for the jockey to grab hold of her early and come running late. She will help the superfecta pay well if she can make the top 4.
CLASS INCLUDED (Include x A Classic Life by Sky Classic) has never missed the exacta in 16 career starts while winning 10 races. This race is a serious class test as she has never raced away from Emerald Downs or Hastings Racecourse.
Learn more about 2012 Breeders Cup Picks.