Three Breeders Cup Spots Up For Grabs
There are a plethora of outstanding thoroughbred horse races this weekend (Aug. 13-14), including automatic qualifiers for the Breeders Cup set for Nov. 5-6 at Keeneland. The “Win and You’re In” races are turf races at Churchill Downs and Saratoga. The other automatic entry goes to the winner of the Prix Jacques le Marios at Deauville, the biggest race in France this weekend.
Grade I Beverly D. Stakes
The $500,000 Grade I Beverly D. Stakes race at Churchill Downs will have just five runners this year. The race serves as a “Win, and You’re In” for the Makers’ Mark Breeders Cup Filly & Mare Turf. The Beverly D. Stakes, previously held at Arlington Park (Chicago), is a 1⅛ mile event for fillies and mares 3 years old and upwards.
While the field only consists of five runners, the race is expected to be wide open, as evident by four horses having a morning line of 3-1 or better. Chad Brown-trained Rougir is the slight favorite at 2-1. Rougir has just one win in four races on American soil though Brown has won this race a record six times.
Irish-bred Lily Pond, making her debut in America, is the second choice at odds of 5-2. Family Way and Princess Grace are each at 3-1, while Dalika is the long shot at 8-1. The winner of the Beverly D. Stakes, formerly the Beverly D. Handicap, has won the Breeders Cup counterpart twice in the last nine years with Sistercharlie (2019) and Dank (2013).
Grade I Fourstardave Stakes
The $500,000 Grade I Fourstardave Stakes at Saratoga, for 3-year-olds and older, also has a small field this year. The one-mile race is a preamble for the FanDuel’s Breeders Cup Mile.
Brown will attempt to win this race for the first time with either of the two favorites, Regal Glory (6-5 morning line) and Masen (2-1). Regal Glory, a 6-year-old mare, has won four straight races and is 12-for-19 with four seconds in her lifetime for career earnings of over $2 million. Meanwhile, Masen is making just his fourth start under Brown’s direction and has two stakes wins along with a second-place finish in the Grade I Maker’s Mark Mile at Keenland in May.
Casa Creed, trained by Bill Mott, is the third choice at odds of 5-2. Mott has won the event a record four times. Get Smokin (8-1), and Front Run the Fed (10-1) round out the field that has a post-time of 6:30 p.m. (ET).
Several world champions have come out of the Fourstardave stakes, including two-time Breeders Cup mile champions Lure (1992 & 1993), Da Hoss (1996 & 1998), and Wise Dan (2012 & 2013). World Approval was the last Fourstardave Stakes winner to be crowned World Champion in 2017.
Grade I Prix Jacques le Marios
The Jacques le Marios is a 1-mile turf event for fillies and colts ages 3 year olds and upwards. This year’s 1 million euro race is set for Sunday, with the field now down to 10 horses following the recent scratch of Maljoom due to a dirty scope. Maljoom had won two of his three career races – which included a win in the G2 Mehl Muhlens-Rennen – and was considered a contender in this race.
With Maljoom out, Coroebus (7-4) and filly Inspiral (11-4) are the clear favorites, while State Rest (5-1) is the third choice. Coroebus has won four of his five starts, with three being stakes victories. Coroebus is trained by Charlie Appleby and owned by Godolphin, who teamed up to win the Breeders Cup Mile last year with Space Blues.
Inspiral (6-5-1-0) is coming off her first defeat as she faced horses older than 3 years old for the first time in the Grade I Falmouth Stakes on July 8. Frankie Dettori gets the ride on Inspiral, which John and Thady Gosden train. Dettori and John Gosden have won the last two Jacques le Marios with Palace Pier.
The Prix Jacques le Marios has been in existence since 1921. 2010 is the first year that the race was added to the Breeders Cup Challenge Series, with the winner getting an invite to the Breeders Cup Mile since 2012. However, the Goldikova is the last horse to win the Jacques le Marios and the Breeders Cup Mile in 2009.