There has been a major boost in sports bettor’s interest in horse racing following American Pharoah’s dramatic run to the first Triple Crown title in 37 years. The following weekly betting report is designed to keep you up to speed with a quick look into some of the graded stakes racing excitement this sport has to offer.
There is a bit of a lull in the action this weekend when it comes to major graded stakes races, although the $200,000 Grade 2 Summertime Oaks at Santa Anita Park for three-year old females and up should grab some attention on this Friday’s racing card. Also on tap at Woodbine this Saturday is the $200,000 Grade 2 King Edward Stakes for three-year olds and up.
The biggest horse racing event on the calendar following the Triple Crown racing season is the Breeders’ Cup, which is a series of races featuring some of the top thoroughbreds from both the United States and around the globe. The biggest race of the day at Keeneland Park for this season’s Breeders’ Cup in late October will be the $5 million Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Classic for three-year olds and up. What makes this year’s race so special is that Triple Crown winner American Pharoah is expected to be in the field.
Bovada has recently updated its futures odds for this year’s classic and as expected this champion three-year old has been listed as a 17/10 favorite to add this prestigious title to his resume as well. Trainer Bob Baffert has yet to determine if this will be American Pharoah’s first race since winning the Belmont Stakes earlier this month. There is some speculation that he may run in the $1 million Grade 1 Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park on Aug. 2. Two other potential races to try and keep his amazing winning streak alive could be the $600,000 Grade 1 Jim Dandy Stakes on Aug. 1 at Saratoga Race Course or the $1 million Grade 1 Pacific Classic at Del Mar on August 22. We'll keep you updated so you can place your sports picks.
The second-favorite on Bovada’s futures list to win this year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic is last season’s Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner California Chrome. This would obviously be a head-to-head matchup made in heaven between two of the most dominant thoroughbreds the sport has seen in quite a while.
After coming-up short in his bid to land a Triple Crown title with a disappointing fourth-place finish in the 2014 Belmont Stakes, California Chrome went on to finish third in last year’s Classic behind Bayern and Toast of New York. Trained by Art Sherman, this champion colt returned to the Winner’s Circle in late-November with a victory in the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby at Del Mar. As far as his career as a four-year old, he placed second in both the Grade 2 San Antonio Handicap at Santa Anita in early February and the Grade 1 Dubai World Cup at Meydan in late March.
Bayern ended-up posting a very successful racing season as a three-year old with victories in the 2014 Haskell Invitational and the Grade 2 Pennsylvania Derby at Philadelphia Park leading-up to his win in last season’s Breeders’ Cup Classic. So far this season, he has finished out of the money in both the Grade 2 Churchill Downs Stakes and the Grade 1 Metropolitan Mile at Belmont Park earlier this month. Also trained by Baffert, Bayern’s futures odds to successfully defend last year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic title stand at 16/1.
The betting odds for a few of the other top contenders to win this year’s Classic have Palace Malice also listed as a 9/1 second favorite followed by Toast of New York and Tonalist at 12/1. Honor Code rounds-out the top seven horses expected to be in the field at 14/1 betting odds.