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Breeders’ Cup Classic attracts classic field

New York Hot List Staff | Friday, November 5, 2021

Today’s the day. All of the hopes and dreams built into a horse’s championship season aspirations come to a head today with the 38th edition of the Breeders’ Cup. The final nine races at the World Championships will be contested Saturday with the highlight being the finale, the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic. A field of nine will square off, with trainer Brad Cox having the two favorites and the top Horse of the Year choices in Knicks Go and Essential Quality. But it will not be a stroll in the park for them with the field also including Hot Rod Charlie, Max Player, Art Collector, and Medina Spirit, who is the Kentucky Derby winner, for now. It should be a classic in every possible way.

Here’s the Hot List picks for the Breeders’ Cup Classic:

The $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1), Del Mar, Saturday, Race 12.

(4) Essential Quality won me over this year as, time after time, he would get an ideal trip and power his way down the stretch to get up and win. That has happened in every start except the Kentucky Derby when he fell a length short. Plenty of early pace is expected in the Classic, so expect Essential Quality to get another clean trip and a well-timed closing move. (6) Art Collector is the winner of his last three starts which were after he joined the barn of Bill Mott who knows how to win the Classic. He should sit a stalking trip and gets the services of Mike Smith since Luis Saez had to stay on Essential Quality. (3) Hot Rod Charlie finally got a Grade 1 win in the PA Derby. He faced lots of tough competition on the 3-year-old circuit and was always a contender. Blinkers go on again after his inability to keep a straight course in his last two starts and that equipment change is a bit concerning. (5) Knicks Go is hard to beat when he gets the early lead because he is fast and can carry that speed around two turns with ease. This is the first time that he will go the 1 ¼ mile distance and it is expected that Medina Spirit will challenge him for the early lead.

The rest of the NY Hot List picks for the entire Breeders’ Cup card and the Special Saturday Pick 3 are available free of charge at this website.