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Horse racing expert and handicapper Andrew Champagne is here with his best picks and betting strategy for the Breeder's Cup Classic from Del Mar.

Breeders Cup Predictions and Picks: Expert Betting Strategy For Saturday's Action

Well, Friday’s Breeders’ Cup card was certainly eventful. We won’t focus too much on the three-ring circus that was the Juvenile Turf, but we’ll simply say Saturday’s proceedings can’t possibly be as chaotic…right? Right?

Anyway, here are a few key betting strategies for Day Two of the 2021 Breeders’ Cup at Del Mar.


This isn’t technically a Breeders’ Cup race, but it houses one of my strongest leans of the day. The Grade 2 Goldikova drew a pretty strong group, and while I respect #2 PRINCESS GRACE and #7 GOING GLOBAL, I’ll try to beat both of them with #1 ZOFELLE.

Zofelle’s last race is a total throw-out. She’s clearly at her best going two turns, not one, and I think the return to such a route will suit her here. This barn has had lots of success with horses coming in off of long breaks, and I think there’ll be plenty of speed to set up for her late kick. I’ll bet her to win, and I’ll key her in exactas with a few runners as well.


  • Win Bet: 1
  • Exacta Key Box: 1 with 2,3,7,8


The Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint has drawn plenty of attention, and not for positive reasons. We’ll go with a field of just five horses, and #5 GAMINE will likely be an odds-on favorite.

However, I think there’s a very viable alternative. #4 CE CE figures to benefit from #3 EDGEWAY and #6 BELLA SOFIA, both going early. This will likely force the chalk to work early on, and if she’s put to the test early, it ought to give Ce Ce enough of a setup to capitalize and, potentially, spring a mild upset.

Ce Ce is 4-1 on the morning line. I don’t think we’ll get that, and we may have to settle for 5/2. However, I’m playing her to win, and I’ll also play a cold Ce Ce-Gamine exacta as well.


  • Win Bet: 4
  • Exacta: 4 with 5

RACES #10 AND #11

Finally, we’ll focus on the Distaff and Turf, which house a pair of longshot plays for me. We’ll need to wait a bit to get there, but I think our patience will be rewarded.

In the Distaff, I’ll try to beat heavy favorite #6 LETRUSKA with #2 ROYAL FLAG. Letruska figures to be tested early by #7 HOROLOGIST, #8 SHEDARESTHEDEVIL, and maybe even a few others. I think a closer stands to benefit from the likely race shape, and Royal Flag exits an impressive victory in the Beldame, where she drew off to win by more than four lengths. Of the front-runners, I most prefer Shedaresthedevil, who has at least shown she doesn’t necessarily need the lead in order to win.

Meanwhile, in the Turf, reigning champion #13 TARNAWA merits respect, and the post draw isn’t quite so bad since a few runners to her inside will scratch. Perhaps she’s good enough to win, but at his likely price, #8 BROOME is very, very appealing. I’m inclined to draw a line through the Arc de Triomphe, and if one does that, Broome’s form looks far, far better. Frankie Dettori sees fit to ride for Aidan O’Brien, who has won this race on six occasions, and I think this world-class duo is very live at a price.

I’ll play my top picks to win in each race, and I’ll also play doubles using all four horses I’ve mentioned. Beating Letruska in the first leg would certainly unlock some value in that wager, and it’s a strategy I’d advise in other multi-race exotics late in the program as well.


  • Win Bets: 2 (R10) and 8 (R11)
  • Doubles: 2,8 with 8,13

Article Author

Horse Racing

Andrew Champagne is a horse racing handicapper with a specialism in juveniles. One thing is for certain, Champagne gets the party started.


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