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2019 Breeders’ Cup Classic Odds: McKinzie Lukewarm Favorite

McKinzie Breeders’ Cup Classic Odds Favorite Santa Anita

The Bob Baffert-trained McKinzie remains the early betting favorite for the $6-million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) as he looks to improve off his 12th-place finish in last year’s edition.

The colt is currently listed at +350 in early Breeders’ Cup Classic betting at Bovada, his price drifting upward from +300 two weeks ago.

Last year at Churchill Downs as a three-year-old facing older for the first time in his career, he was sent off at odds of +390. The colt prompted the early pace but faded to finish 31 lengths behind winner Accelerate.

The colt came into last year’s Classic off a victory in the Pennsylvania Derby (G1) at Parx Racing.

This year the colt has won two of his six starts, winning the Alysheba (G2) at Churchill Downs in May and the Whitney (G1) at Saratoga in August, which earned him an automatic starting spot as part of the “Win and You’re In” series of races.

In his final prep in the Awesome Again (G1) over the Santa Anita main track, he had to settle for the runner-up spot behind long shot Mongolian Groom.

Does McKinzie Offer Value?

The question horseplayers have to ask is whether the colt is going to offer much value as the betting favorite. He has two major pluses in his corner. He has not missed landing in the exacta in seven trips over the Santa Anita main track and his Hall of Fame trainer has won the Classic three times, with Bayern in 2014, American Pharoah in 2015 and Arrogate in 2016.

His lone start in his career where he did not land in the exacta was last year’s Classic. He faces a solid while not spectacular group next Saturday, and his price may actually be a bit shorter than his current odds of +350 by post time.

Code of Honor a Main Threat

Code of Honor is coming into the race the right way for another Hall of Fame trainer in Shug McGaughey. The colt was beaten a nose by Vino Rosso in the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) at Belmont Park but was placed first through a disqualification of the winner for interference in the stretch.

The three-year-old is the current second choice in early Classic betting at Bovada at +400. Since 2007, three-year-olds have won the Classic five times, three of those coming from the Baffert barn.

The Todd Pletcher-trained Vino Rosso put in a career top effort last time out in the Jockey Club Gold Cup only to be taken down. He shipped west to win the Gold Cup at Santa Anita (G1) in May. He is the third choice in early Classic wagering at +600.

Mott Has Two Contenders

The mare Elate will be cross-entered in the Classic and Distaff, but trainer Bill Mott has stated she is likely headed to the Classic to take on the boys. She is listed at +750 at Bovada.

The Distaff is run at 1 1/8 miles and she is perfect in her three starts at the Classic distance of 1 1/4 miles. She was beaten a half-length by Blue Price in her final prep in the Spinster (G1) at Keeneland at 1 1/8 miles.

Mott will also saddle Yoshida, who was fourth in last year’s Classic. The five-year-old is listed at +800.

He is 0-for-5 this year, his best finish a second to McKinzie in the Whitney where he was beaten 1 3/4 lengths. He rallied for third in the Woodward (G1) at Saratoga in his last outing.

Others that are pointing toward the Classic include Higher Power, Owendale, Mongolian Groom, Math Wizard, Seeking the Soul and War of Will.

Pre-entries will be announced on Wednesday evening and post positions will be drawn next Monday.

Handicapper Michael Dempsey will be covering the Breeders’ Cup for Odds Shark and his full card reports with selections, analysis, fair odds line and wagering recommendations for major tracks can be found daily at turfnsport.com.

2019 Breeders’ Cup Classic Odds
Code Of Honor+400
Vino Rosso+500
Higher Power+1600
Mr Money+1600
Gift Box+2000
Mongolian Groom+2000
Sir Winston+2000
Catalina Cruiser+2500
Catholic Boy+2500
Math Wizard+2500
War of Will+2500
Hidden Scroll+3300
Seeking The Soul+3300
Comical Ghost+3300

Odds as of October 22 at Bovada