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Breeders’ Cup Turf Top Contenders and Betting Trends

Defending champion Found was ninth in last year’s Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (G1) at Chantilly, ran second in the Champion Stakes (G1) and then won the Turf, becoming the 10th Turf winner to have also run in the Arc.

However, no Arc winner has won the Turf. Oops, Found won the Arc this year at 9-1, so is that a bad thing? She has kept her busy schedule, running a good second in the Champion Stakes (G1). She seeks to give her trainer Aiden O’Brien his sixth win in the Turf.

The Arc winner is currently at 2-1 in early Breeders’ Cup Turf wagering.

O’Brien is also sending over Highland Reel, who ran a good second in the Arc at 24-1. He looked washed out before the race which got me off him, but he bounced back nicely off his seventh-place finish in the Irish Champion Stakes (G1) at Leapordstown in his previous start. He made a trip to the U.S. in 2015, winning the Secretariat (G1) at Arlington Park. 

Flintshire could end up the betting favorite for the Turf (he is currently 12/5 at Bovada) and he ran second in the race in 2014 behind Main Sequence. Since sticking in the U.S. and landing with Chad Brown, he won his first three starts for the barn but then was upset in the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic (G1) over yielding footing he did not seem to care for. He will get firmer footing at Santa Anita.

He was beaten in the Joe Hirsch by the Todd Pletcher-trained Ectot, who was able to take the field gate to wire. That was his first win since taking the Prix Niel (G2) in September 2014.

Other U.S. hopefuls include John Henry Turf (G2) winner Ashleyluvssugar and Kentucky Turf Cup (G3) winner Da Big Hoss.

Breeders’ Cup Turf Betting Trends
  • Euro invaders making their last start across the pond have accounted for 17 of the 32 winners of the Turf including four of the last six.
  • None of those four Euros were the betting favorite or the highest-profile runner coming over…Nine three-year-olds have won the Turf and seven of the nine were Euro shippers.
  • Females have won the race three times, Pebbles (1985), Miss Alleged (1991) and Found (2015), all Euro shippers.
  • Three of the last four Turf winners did not have a win at 1 ½ miles coming into the race.
  • There have only been three gate to wire winners, Great Communicator (1988), Buck’s Boy (1998) and Little Mike (2012).
  • The betting favorite has only won once in the past 13 years, landing second four times during that period.
  • The winner of the race the last six years has paid between $14.40 and $36.60…Trainer Aiden O’Brien has won the Turf five times.
  • Jockey Ryan Moore has won four of the last eight editions.
  • Euros have won the Turf four times at Santa Anita, the U.S. five times (there was a dead heat in ’03)
  • The Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe has produced 10 Turf winners but none of those 10 actually won the Arc.
  • The key U.S. races are the Joe Hirsch and Man O’ War.
Breeders’ Cup Turf Betting Odds

Odds as of November 3 at Bovada

  • 1. Ralis   50/1     
  • 2. Da Big Hoss   25/1                      
  • 3. Ectot (GB)   12/1                         
  • 4. Flintshire (GB)   12/5                  
  • 5. Ashleyluvssugar   25/1              
  • 6. Mondialiste (IRE)   20/1                           
  • 7. Ulysses (IRE)    10/1                   
  • 8. Twilight Eclipse   50/1               
  • 9. Money Multiplier   33/1                           
  • 10. Found (IRE)   2/1                      
  • 11. Texas Ryan   50/1     
  • 12. Highland Reel (IRE)   11/4                     
  • 13. Metaboss   33/1 (scratched)

Handicapper Michael Dempsey will be covering the Breeders’ Cup for OddsShark and his full card reports with final selections, analysis, fair odds line and wagering recommendations for both days of action will be available at turfnsport.com where you can also pick up the Turf ‘n’ Sport 2016 Breeders’ Cup Wagering Guide, a 38-page look at the early contenders and betting trends for each race.