By News Team
4th November 2020
There are plenty of European riders heading over to Keeneland for this year’s Breeders’ Cup, but Nick Luck is expecting American dominance on the opening day of the big meeting.
Here are his thoughts on the five juvenile contests on day one.
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Sprint
MOMOS can cap a fine year for brilliant veteran trainer Christophe Clement by giving him a long overdue Breeders’ Cup victory. This speedy colt (14/1) showed a nice bit of improvement on his first turf run at Belmont Park, where his main asset was clearly his blinding speed. It is that kind of brazen early dash that has won both runnings of this race, and the fact that Clement reaches for blinkers shows his intent. Golden Pal (13/8) is clearly a worthy favourite, but stall fourteen will be tough.
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf
MUTASAABEQ (9/2) could be the one to give Todd Pletcher a second win in this race, 10 years after Pluck’s win down the road at Churchill Downs. This horse was very impressive when winning the Bourbon here with a withering late run having forfeited a huge amount of ground and will benefit from both a fair post position and a likely searching pace. The settled forecast will ensure genuinely fast ground, which mildly tempers enthusiasm for the European challenge, though Cadillac (13/2) and New Mandate (7/1) are feared most.
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies
VEQUIST might offer a bit of value here at 8/1, even though she appears to have a big task overturning her form in the Frizette with Dayoutoftheoffice (10/3). There is no doubt, however, that is the best form on offer in the race, for all Princess Noor’s tall reputation and visual impression out West. Vequist stuck at it valiantly enough in New York and, if her old rival hooks up with Simply Ravishing too early, she might enjoy the perfect trip with Joel Rosario replacing Luis Saez.
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf
Likely favourite AUNT PEARL looks to have an awful lot in her favour here, not least the red-hot form this year of her extremely talented trainer, Brad Cox. She has natural pace, the best course form, progressive and strong speed figures, and a more favourable post than either of her two wins to date. Although she has made all both times, she doesn’t look a tearaway, and is one of the meet’s better favourites at 11/4.
I will be backing MISS AMULET each-way as well at 10/1, and in exotic bets underneath the selection. She is well drawn, tough, consistent and might well stay a two-turn mile – certainly, the booking of Julien Leparoux will help in that regard.
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile
KEEPMEINMIND is a big price here as he seeks to break his maiden, but he’s not out of this by any means and should be backed each-way at 33/1 and included in any exotic wagering. Pitched in deep in the Breeders’ Futurity here at Keeneland last time, he ran a huge race to finish second to today’s rival Essential Quality (who is likely to be about a fifth his price at around 7/2). He didn’t have a great trip that day, but Jose Ortiz is a massive jockey upswitch, blinkers are applied and he’s got a nice draw. Jackie’s Warrior (6/4) will be very hard to stop, but ought to get more pace pressure than he’s had so far.