Breeders' Cup Saturday: Lieutenant Dan (10/1), War Like Goddess (4/1), Master Of The Seas (14/1)

19:40: 5f Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (Grade 1) (3yo+) (Turf) (3yo+)

My rule of thumb is to always back Americans in International Group One sprints, particularly those raced in America. The style of racing and the firm ground is so different to Europe and I’m happy to put a line through the European challenge for this prize. Emaraaty Ana second favourite? Seriously? I love a sprinter drawn low with lots of ones and twos in his form – particularly when two of those are course and distance wins at Del Mar – which is exactly what LIEUTENANT DAN is for the Turf Sprint. He’s got the race favourite and likely pace in the race, Golden Pal, next door to him in three, so seemingly has everything in his favour to get a tow into the race. Expect him to sit off Golden Pal up with the pace and try to outstay, or even out-sprint him, in the final stretch.

1pt win Lieutenant Dan @10/1, 19:40 Del Mar, Saturday

20:59: 1m3f Maker’s Mark Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (Grade 1) (3yo+ Fillies & Mares) (Turf) (3yo+)

For all the Europeans have such a good record in this race, I can’t escape the claims of antepost race favourite WAR LIKE GODDESS here at 4/1. She’s been winning her races very easily this season and has four wins from five career starts – her only defeat coming on debut. There are no stamina doubts and all the fancied European horses are drawn wide – I don’t think they’re the strongest bunch and, besides Arc-day winner Rougir, they’re largely out of form or conservatively priced. Japanese raider Loves Only You has claims to be the class horse in the race but a short price and stall eight cool the enthusiasm. It was a toss up between the selection and trying to land Going To Vegas each-way, but nagging stamina and class doubts won over.

1pt win War Like Goddess @4/1, 20:59 Del Mar, Saturday

22:20: 1m FanDuel Breeders’ Cup Mile presented by Permanently Disabled Jockey Fund (Grade 1) (3yo+) (Turf) (3yo+)

I found this the hardest race of the meeting as it’s just so competitive. Space Blues is a brilliant horse but fast ground and a mile with his run style doesn’t sound like a good recipe for Del Mar. On the other end of the spectrum, Smooth Like Strait looks tailor made for the track and, if you’re looking to steal a place, is the each-way play from a low draw, but I’ve got class doubts. Mo Forza – who’s beat him twice this season – has stronger claims and looks a fair price, but I think we need double-digit odds in this race as the favourites have plenty to beat. MASTER OF THE SEAS is a very good horse on fast ground and this race has been the plan since a setback ruled him out of the Summer months. He as good as won the 2,000 Guineas as only the most unfortunate of head bobs went against him versus Poetic Flare, who has really rubber stamped the form since. If breaking well, he should be able to sit behind the pace from stall one and from there you’d have to say 14/1 is an excellent price for a horse with so much potential – he’s just got to break well or it’ll be over very quickly.

1pt win Master Of The Seas @14/1, 22:20 Del Mar, Saturday

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