We put a lot on the line last night at Santa Anita as we made our followers well aware that we were opposing Excelebration in the Breeders’ Cup Mile. It came to many disbelief, given the form he had in the book. With Frankel out the way, it looked a formality that he would shine on the big stage following his QEII demolition job. We have had our concerns regarding this horse for a while, and until now seemingly been proved wrong. We controversially made him a lay at Ascot and got our fingers well and truly burnt. A naive lay and a decision we obviously regret in hindsight given conditions were in his favour. We did however, have our reasons for the lay and were again happy to take him on, this time out of his comfort zone. He had a lot of questions to answer at Santa Anita and when he opened at 5/4 our decision was all but made up. The tight turning track would by no means prove in his favour. This combined with Joseph O’Brien not being one to rely on in a tactical affair, which we had no doubt it would turn into. Wise Dan was always going to have first run on Excelebration with the track a negative for Aidan O’Brien’s mount, it would prove a huge positive for Velazquez. There was a huge question mark regarding the ground as well. It was riding quicker than anything Excelebration had ridden on before and with his best form all coming on ground with juice in it, it would only add to a long list of negatives. Wise Dan had been prepped for the race and it was a brilliant training performance to land the Breeders’ Cup Mile. The American wonder-horse kicked off the home turn to devastating effect with Excelebration finishing a one-paced fourth having held every chance. Animal Kingdom, after a lengthy absence ran an absolute cracker in second with Obviously grabbing third at the death. Moonlight Cloud was never able to land a blow for trainer Freddy Head, five times a winner of the $2 million race. John Velazquez had been aboard Animal Kingdom when he triumphed beneath the twin spires at Churchill Downs last year, but the prospect of another opportunity to partner the revitalised Wise Dan proved too tempting to resist. It was great to see Animal Kingdom back to his best, with a touching trained-story behind him. He will surely remain in training with seemingly more to give. Trainer Charles Lopresti was an emotional wreck after the Mile, and how he was entitled to be. He said: “You could wait a lifetime for a horse like this”. To wait for Wise Dan at his prime racegoers had to hold on until this summers when Lopresti wtiched the Grade 1 dirt winner back to turf. It really was a fascinating Breeders’ Cup and one which we ended up in profit, making twenty points on both nights. Winners included 20/1 shot Calidoscopio and Royal Delta on day one, followed by Shanghai Bobby, Mizdirection and Wise Dan last night.
NAP – best bet of the meeting
NB – next best bet of the meeting
NAP – best bet of the day
NB – next best of the day
IWAC – in with a chance
A point refers to a set number ($1, $5, $10 etc).
(AW) = All Weather surface
(IRE) = Ireland meeting
Please read our article on The Basics of Betfair to learn how to place Starting Price (SP) bets.
*Please note, if the odds are over the listed price on the bet, we take that price otherwise use SP bet to get closest to best odds overall as most horses generally drift in.
12.45 Outback 5/1 2 point win
1.15 Attaglance 9/2 2 point win
1.45 Right Stuff 9/2 2 point win
2.20 Benny The Swinger 13/8 2 point win
2.55 Present View 4/1 NB 3 point win NB
3.30 Genny Wren 6/1 2 point win
4.00 Be Bop Boru 5/2 NAP 4 point win
12.55 A Star Is Born 9/4 NB 3 point win
1.25 Cottrell 9/2 2 point win
2.00 Barbados Bob 8/1 1 point EW
2.35 Devotion 7/1 1 point EW
3.05 Sugar Boy 6/1 2 point win
3.35 Unaccompanied 5/4 NAP 4 point win NAP
4.05 Albert Bridge 7/1 1 point EW
1.00 Rupert Bear 7/4 NB 4 point win
1.30 Kings Grace 9/4 NAP 5 point win
2.05 Ifyousayso 4/9F No Bet
2.40 Rival D’Estruval 11/8 4 point win
3.10 Rebel Swing 10/1 2 point EW IWAC
3.45 Worth A King’S 14/1 1 point EW
4.15 Vinstar EVS 4 point win
1.10 Brog Deas 4/6 4 point win
1.40 Dara Tango 12/1 1 point EW
2.15 Bundle Of Fun 6/1 2 point EW
2.50 The Crafty Butcher 7/4 3 point win
3.20 Baily Green 11/4 NAP 4 point win
3.50 Boxer Beat 12/1 1 point EW
4.20 Goodoldhonkytonk 9/4 NB 4 point win
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