While not my Chalk, The Turk is enamored with the pretty mare to the left in the wonderful Charles Pravata photo, Zenyatta. We wish her well and hopes she proves us wrong.
Race 9 at Santa Anita Post Time 6:45 ET; The Breeders' Cup Classic Grade I; 1 1/4 miles on very fake dirt for 3 YOs and Up.
I'm not thrilled to be presenting one Euro after another to win but they seem to be better right now on Turf and that form seems to be playing the best on the polytrack. Adian O'Brien has not had success on the American Stage yet but brings a solid runner in Rip Van Winkle with his rider Murtagh up today. Coming in with two straight Grade I wins after getting away in the conditions book from See the Stars, a theme it would seem today and another horse we are giving credit to for running only one beaten length to the superstar. Hedging down and I think he's a very vunerable chalk.
I'm going to give Hall of Famer Baffert's Richard's Kid another chance to show me he's for real. A decent Goodwood followed up his Pacific Classic win. Proven on poly but a big stretch here. Working very well.
Either Gio Ponti or Einstein I expect to step up and possibly surprise for the win and both are capable of being in the top four. How easy it is to overlook these two titans as a knowledgeable horsewoman named Cathy reminded me of today.
Summer Bird has as many wins on an off track (2) as he has on fast dirt, but no starts on turf or poly. In my mind he's done enough to be the 3 YO of the year and if he can find the top three here today, he'll cement his status, but I'm not banking on it.
Mighty Zenyatta is a very very very good horse, a great F&M runner, and a poly monster. I think she should have tried the Classic last year, not this year. I truely hope I am wrong but I think she's wearing down not speeding up and a 98 BSF won't win today.
I have great respect for the little gelding that could, Mine That Bird. I look forward to his 4 YO season and I haven't written him off here, I'm just being realistic. More then talented, but the Goodwood was so-so and last year's BC was abysmal, so this particular form of fake dirt may not be his cup of tea.
These are the days. Have fun, Turk Out!