Learn more about 2012 Breeders Cup Picks.
The Breeders’ Cup Marathon is a strange race. Due it’s unusual distance, it can produces unusual results. Last year’s winner, Afleet Again, won at odds of 41-1. Let’s take a look at this year’s field.
ALMUDENA (Silver Planet x Fire Legend by Engrillado) is a five-year-old Peruvian mare. She has won 6 of 18 races in her native land and will be making her first start outside of South America. Trainer Juan Suarez’s filly is largely an unknown commodity.
The likely favorite for the Marathon is Ken McPeek’s ATIGUN (Istan x Rimini Road by Dynaformer). Probably a better fit in the Classic, McPeek probably sees this race as low hanging fruit. The three-year-old colt enters this race after fourth place finishes in the Travers and Jockey Club Gold Cup.
BALLADRY (Unbridled’s Song x Storm Song by Summer Squall) owns a win over this track. The Godolphin Racing owned colt hasn’t won at races close to this distance, but has put together some respectable finishes. This roan runner would benefit from a pace meltdown. Eoin Harty is the trainer.
CALIDOSCOPIO (Luhuk x Calderona by Lefty) is a nine-year-old with only 39 races. He has won nine times, including twice this year in his native Argentina. He is bred well for an ultra route race like this one and has even won a few races of this nature back home.
COMMANDER (Broken Vow x Pout by Deputy Minister) will ship down from Hastings after winning six consecutive races in Canada. The Troy Taylor trained gelding likes to race near the front and should have an experienced Santa Anita jockey in the form of Kentucky Derby winning jockey Mario Gutierrez.
ELDAAFER (A.P. Indy x Habibti by Tabasco Cat) has won three races since annexing the Breeders’ Cup Marathon in 2010. His form had seemingly tailed off, but he is doing much better recently. The Diane Alvarado trained gelding was last seen finishing a good third to Pool Play and Cease in the Hawthorne Gold Cup.
The multiple Group 1 winning horse FAME AND GLORY (Montjeau x Gryada by Shirley Heights) should be feared. Trained by Aidan O’Brien, the bay racehorse has thrived against some of Europe’s best racehorses going distances similar to that of the Marathon.
GRASSY (El Prado x High Savannah by Rousillon) is a dual Grade 2 winner on turf, but has never raced on dirt. Martin Jones has recently taken over training duties from Christophe Clement. It will take some turning around in form for him to impact this race, but if he takes to the dirt who knows what might happen.
JAYCITO (Victory Gallop x Night Edition by Ascot Knight) figures to improve stretching his legs at a distance like this one. Conditioned by Bob Baffert, the Grade 1 winner won the second race of his career at Del Mar against optional claiming company. He was last seen finishing a close third in a minor stakes race and earned a career best Beyer number while doing it. He could be ready to run another big time race for the Breeders’ Cup.
JUNIPER PASS (Lemon Drop Kid x Child Bride by Coronado’s Quest) won his only start on Santa Anita’s dirt track. He excels in long races. Look for the Thomas Bell trained gelding to be near the front early on.
NOT ABROAD (Not for Love x Timely Broad by Broad Brush) enters this race after drawing clear for a four length win in the Maryland Millions Classic. Last year, his form peaked near the end of his campaign. It looks like the same thing is happening again. Michael Petro is the trainer.
QUAIL HILL (Candy Ride x Midwife by Family Calling) is a claimer that was last seen finishing second in a stakes race at Fairplex. He will need a scratch in order to draw into this race. If he wins, it will be a huge upset.
ROMP (Incurable Optimist x Stormy Secret by Hidden Prize) has won just 4 of his 58 races. He hasn’t won since taking an allowance race in 2010. That makes it hard for us to take him seriously in this spot. Kristin Mulhall is the trainer.
The Irish bred SENSE OF PURPOSE (Galileo x Super Gift by Darshaan) is a nice looking mare that is a Group 3 winner across the pond. She enters this race after being badly beaten in the Autumn Fillies Handicap at the Curragh and is without a win in three tries this year. We know she will handle the distance, so if she takes to the dirt track she is a contender.
WORTH REPEATING (Giant’s Causeway x Lady Nichola by A.P. Indy) enters this race with strong form and could be flying under the radar. The Michael Machowsky pupil was last seen taking a minor stakes event at Fairplex. Earlier this season he was second to Classic contender Richard’s Kid in the Cougar II Handicap. It should be noted that he is a Grade 3 stakes winner at this track going 1 1/2 miles.
Learn more about 2012 Breeders Cup Picks.