Breeders' Cup 2021 Trends

Breeders’ Cup 2021: Trends

This will be the 38th renewal of the great transatlantic set to that is the Breeders' Cup and, while some races are newer than that, most have a historical identikit profile worth noting. What follows are some observations based on what we've seen previously in the hope that it may inform what happens on the first weekend in November.

Breeders' Cup 2021: Friday Trends

Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf (1m, Turf) (14 renewals to date)

  • Euro 8 US 6 (Euro 1st Del Mar 2017, always handy from post 1)
  • 2-6 runs (13/14 had 2 to 5 runs - Prior Starts: 2-2/3-3/4-6/5-2/6-1)
  • 5/6 US won at 1m+, only 3/8 Euro won at 1m (incl ’17 & '18 winners, however)
  • 1st-3rd Fav Only 7 from 42 (14 renewals) - 50% winners outside top 3 in betting
  • 14/14 Top 3 LTO or within 2L of winner (ran sharp)
  • 0 Front Runner winners (8 CLOSERS, 6 PROMINENT)
  • 6 of the 8 Euro winners plus Hootenanny recorded RPR of 110+; '16 winner 108 LTO, '18 winner 105 LTO
  • 8/8 Euro winners placed in G1/2 LTO, or won lesser stakes; 3 of last 5 Euro winners placed in Dewhurst LTO ('18 winner won G3 LTO)
  • 6/6 US winners had won a Stakes and were placed 123 in all Stakes runs
  • Euro winners 20-42 days absent (5/8 20 or 21 days); US 20, 34, 34, 35, 49, 68 days absent
  • Pilgrim Stakes considered a key prep: got 1st win in ’16, 2nd win in '19, 3rd win in '20

Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (1m½f, Dirt) (37 renewals to date)

  • >> Good race for an upset when trials were slow…
  • 16 of the last 19 had 3-5 career starts (exceptions, 2 starts, ’07, ’17 & '19)
  • Last 19, career runs: 2-3/3-7/4-6/5+-3
  • Layoff: 32/37 were running within 30 days (‘16 winner 35 days off); (34/37 5 weeks off or less)
  • 30/37 (81%) had a Grade 1, 2 or 3 win, from c.60% of the runners. 3/7 non-qualifiers placed in Frizette (incl. ’17 winner)
  • 21/26 improved Beyer when racing 7f+ for 1st time (excludes pre-Beyer BC's and winners with no 7f+ form)
  • 90+ Beyer = very strong, 80+ 1 or 2 starts = strong
  • 34/37 were top 4 or less than 4L behind the winner last time out
  • Favourite is 18/37 (49%)
  • "Look beyond the obvious when trials were slow", favour lightly raced improver
  • 22/37 (59%) had NOT won at the distance

Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (1m, Turf) (13 renewals to date)

  • 8/11 US winners ran in Miss Grillo or Natalma, ’17/'20 winners exited Jessamine, '19 winner minor Stakes
  • US 11 Euro 2 (both Euro in the two non-Lasix years)
  • 12/13 finished top 3 or within 1.5L of the winner last time out (exception ran in Miss Grillo)
  • 12/13 won at 1m+ (exception, Flotilla, 1.5L behind in Arc weekend G1)
  • 13/13 finished top 3, or within 1.5L of the winner, in a Stakes race
  • Frontrunners 3, Prominent 6, Late runners 4
  • Layoff: 3wks-2 / 4wks-3 / 5wks-5 / 6wks-1 / 7wks-2 (Euro 4-5wks)
  • Prior Runs: US winners 2-7; 3-2; 4-1; 5-0; 6-1 / Euro winners 4-1; 5-1
  • 80+ Beyer – 8/11 recorded 81+ (2 others had only 2 starts) / Euro RPR's 114, 106
  • 2 Euro winners ran in G1 races LTO (1st, 1.5L 4th) - Euro^ = G1 LTO
  • Chad Brown has trained 5 JFT winners (4 in California) , incl. 5 of the last 7
  • 4 of Chad's 5 won the Ms Grillo
  • All US exacta: 5/13

Breeders' Cup Juvenile (1m ½f, Dirt) (37 renewals so far)

  • 35/37 ran 123 or within 4L of the winner last time out
  • Look for solid workouts, especially off a longer (35+ day) layoff
  • 19 of the last 28 winners posted a new Beyer top LTO
  • 18 of last 25 winners improved their Beyer racing at 7f+ for the first time
  • Uncoupled entries won in 2010, 2013 and 2015
  • Prior runs of US winners since 2000: 2-6 (incl 4 in last 8 years)/ 3-5 / 4-6

Breeders' Cup 2021: Saturday Trends

Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (7f, Dirt) (14 renewals so far)

  • Winner's age: 64454455445333
  • 3yo's 3 from 39 to date; '18 winner 3yo, 20/1; '19 1st/2nd only two 3yo's in the field
  • 3yo's won 0 of first 11, and now won last 3!
  • 13/14 finished in the top 3, or within 3L of the winner, last time (not ’17 winner)
  • 11/14 won at 7f; 5/14 2+ wins at 7f
  • 11/14 won or were 2nd in a G1 ('17 winner 2nd 7f G1 2 yrs ago, '18 winner 1st G2 LTO, only 7f start)
  • TCA at Keeneland is a key prep (albeit over 6f) –
  • PID Masters also key race – no longer being run?
  • Surface switch (synth or turf to dirt) : 7/14 winners; '18 winner 1stx2 on synths prior to final prep on dirt
  • Fav 5/14, 2nd fav 2/14, 3rd fav 0/14. 7/14 4th or lower in the betting

Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (5f, Turf) (13 renewals so far)

  • 9/13 were distance winners (material when run at 5 1/2f, not relevant in 2021)
  • Age 3-1; 4-5; 5-3; 6-3; 8-1 (all largely in line with representation)
  • 11/13 winners were top 3 or within 3L of the winner last time out (not ’17 winner)
  • 11/13 had 99+ Beyer or 115+ RPR; 13/13 96+ Beyer or 115+ RPR
  • 12/13 had 4+ starts in year
  • 12/13 had a 28+ day layoff
  • 13/13 placed in Graded Stakes (9/13 WON Graded Stakes)
  • Europeans 1 from 12 so far (Glass Slippers in 2020)
  • Favourite is 4/13
  • Peter Miller won the three renewals between 2017 and 2019 (including 2x exacta!)
  • Y/N - Previous runs, not what is declared for BC
  • CT - Class turnback, as deployed by Bobby's Kitten 2014

Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (1m, Dirt) (14 renewals to date)

  • 11/14 ran in a Grade 1 or 2 last time out (but NOT '19 or '20 winners)
  • All 14 notched at least one 100+ Beyer in their last two races
  • 9/14 had 5+ runs in the year, 8/14 had 6+ runs in year
  • # of runs from 2012: 5-8-4-3-3-9-4-7-2 (tendency to less, '20 winner lightest raced in the season ever)
  • Seasonal run breakdown: 2-1/3-2/4-2/5-1/6-2/7-1/8-2/9-2/10-1
  • Layoff: 11/14 27-42 days ('18 winner 70 days, '19 winner 20 days)
  • 8/14 'turned back' in distance (2/4 exceptions were Goldencents)
  • Top 3 favourites: Fav 3/14; 2nd fav 3/14; 3rd fav 1/14 [7/14 outside top 3 in betting]
  • Age 3-4/4-8/5-1/6-1 = 12/14 aged 3 or 4yo
  • 13/14 had won a Graded Stakes in career
  • 9/14 had won at a mile (not '20 winner)

Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (1m3f, Turf) (22 renewals to date)

  • US/import 12 Europe 10
  • 8/8 US winners 1st/2nd LTO; 3/4 ex-Euro imports 1st LTO; 1/10 Euro 1st LTO!
  • Layoff: US/import 10/12 35 days or less; '18 winner off 84 days (Chad)); Euro, anything goes!
  • Age: 3-6 (all Euro, including 16, 17 & 19 winners); 4-10; 5-4; 6 or more-1
  • Since 2007, Euro 3yo: 4, US: 8, Euro 4yo+: 2
  • 20/22 - 4-7 runs this season (other 2 had 3 starts)
  • 9 of 12 US winners had a race at Keeneland that season
  • Since 2012, Chad Brown 4 Europe 5 (all 11/1 or shorter, 2nd with the fav in 2020 from 4 starters)
  • Del Mar start makes life potentially tricky for very low and high stalls

Breeders' Cup Sprint (6f, Dirt) (37 renewals to date)

  • 2007-2019, the BC Sprint winners came into the race with a combined 80/150 lifetime win record (53%)
  • Whitmore in 2020 was 14/37 lifetime (38%)
  • Last 29 winners had at least 50% 1-2 strike rate at 6f
  • 35/37 won a G1-3 that season
  • 1+ 6f wins AND ran sharp 7f last 12 months a solid recent angle
  • 22 of the last 28 had 2+ 6f wins that season
  • 13 of the last 23 winners were 50%+ lifetime winners
  • 12 of last 17 winners had 5 or fewer seasonal starts ('19 & '20 winners 6 starts)
  • 20 of last 27 winners showed a bullet workout
  • 28 of last 29 winners notched at least 103 Beyer in same season

Breeders' Cup Mile (1m, Turf) (37 renewals to date)

  • 18 of last 19 winners had 4-6 seasonal starts
  • 16/19 winners since 2002 had 2+ mile turf wins (exceptions, Euros Karakontie 2014, Expert Eye 2018, Order of Australia 2020)
  • Repeat winners common (Miesque, Lure, Da Hoss, Goldikova, Wise Dan)
  • 16 of the last 25 were US winners; 7 French-trained (UK/Ire 2 for 81 since 1995, Expert Eye in 2018, Order of Australia 2020)
  • Only Goldikova (x3), Karakontie, Expert Eye, Order of Australia have stemmed US dominance since 2004
  • 9/11 3yo winners were Euros (4 fillies); 12/13 5yo+ winners were US (exception Goldikova #3)
  • Euro G1 win important, US any Graded win (Expert Eye, Order of Australia no G1 win)
  • 24 of the last 27 ran 123 last time, or finished within 4L of the winner (Order of Australia an exception)
  • Career record at 1m of BC Mile winners since 2002: Runs 141, 1st 81 (57%), 2nd 30 (21%)
  • Thus, the last 19 BC Mile winners had a collective 78% 1-2 record at the distance
  • No front runner has been 1st or 2nd since 2000

Breeders’ Cup Distaff (1m1f, Dirt) (37 renewals to date)

  • 29/37 won by 3 or 4yo's ('19 winner 6yo, '20 winner 5yo though missed entire 4yo season)
  • 17/37 won by 4yo's (including 10 of the last 19)
  • 36/37 finished top 3 or within 4L of winner last time out
  • 21 of the last 30 winners ran 6-8 times in the year ('19 winner 5 runs, '20 winner 3 runs)
  • 27/33 1m1f Distaff winners had won at the distance already
  • Layoff: 29/37 35 days or less ('20 winner off 64 days)
  • 26/33 1m1f Distaff winners had won a Grade 1 in same year
  • The favourite is 16/37 (43% SR)
  • 34/37 had recorded a Beyer of 100+

Breeders’ Cup Turf (1m4f, Turf) (37 renewals to date)

  • 25/26 winners to have raced at the distance had been at least 2nd (Found in 2015 the exception)
  • Layoff: US 35 days or less (19 winner off 3 months); Euro any
  • 37/37 aged 3-5yo; 6yo+ 0/56
  • Euro 3yo's 7; US 3yo's 2 (last one in 1989)
  • 29/37 won G1 that season (7/8 exceptions were Euro, & averaged 13/1). US *MUST* have won G1 same season
  • 12/23 Euro winners last ran in the Arc (not usually the 'obvious' one, though Enable doubled up in '18)
  • Arc winners are 1/7 in same season (Enable first horse to do the double)
  • 8 US winners ran in Joe Hirsch, six of them winning that key prep ()
  • 24/27 since '94 had 3-8 starts - 3-5; 4 or 5-7; 6 to 8-12 (5 of last 9 had 6-8 seasonal runs, Enable won off just 2 runs in '18, Tarnawa off 3 in '20)
  • Every winner to have had at least two 1m4f runs won or was 100% ITM at the distance
  • Europe 16 1/2 US 5 1/2 since 1999 (2xUS winners trained Graham Motion, Englishman)

Breeders’ Cup Classic (1m2f, Dirt) (37 renewals so far)

  • All of the last 20 Classic winners had 3-8 runs that season
  • 36/37 ran 1-2-3 LTO (22 x 1st; 9 x 2nd; 5 x 3rd)
  • 33/37 won a G1 that season
  • 37/37 aged 3-5 (6yo+ 0/33) – 3yo 12 wins; 4yo 15 wins; 5yo 9 wins. (Tom's D'Etat 7/2, aged 7 in 2020, finished 2nd last)
  • 21 of last 32 posted stamina (6f+) workout since last run
  • 10/11 40+ day layoffs posted Bullet AND/OR Stamina works since last run
  • 10/13 3yo winners ran in at least one Triple Crown race (1 exception was a Euro)
  • 21 of the last 25 posted 100+ Beyer last time but below previous best ('19 winner, 106, new Beyer top; '20 winner, 105, equalled his top Beyer)
  • Where no distance form, check breeding for stamina credentials

 

Good luck!

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