Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider's 5-year-old homebred mare Elate, winner of the Fleur de Lis (G2) and the Delaware Handicap (G2), has jumped into the Top 10 in the latest poll of the Breeders' Cup Classic Rankings, while Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman's 4-year-old McKinzie remains in first place.
Elate (90 votes), a bay daughter of Medaglia d'Oro out of the Distorted Humor mare Cheery, trained by Bill Mott, rose from No. 14 to No. 7 during the past week. Elate, who has won two of her five starts this year, finished second by a nose in an epic battle with Midnight Bisou in the Personal Ensign Stakes (G1) at Saratoga on Aug. 24.
Elate's victory in the Fleur de Lis at Churchill Downs on June 15 earned her an automatic berth into the Longines Breeders' Cup Distaff. Both Mott and Claiborne Farm are considering a start in either Distaff or the Classic for Elate. Mott won the Breeders' Cup Classic in 1995 with Cigar and again in 2011 with Drosselmeyer.
The 4-year-old McKinzie (260 votes) is slated to be the heavy favorite in this Saturday's “Win and You're In” 1 1/8-mile Awesome Again Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita Park for trainer Bob Baffert. A bay son of the 2006 Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner Street Sense, McKinzie earned a free berth into this year's Classic when he won the Whitney (G1) on Aug. 3.
With Godolphin's Thunder Snow (IRE) off the Classic trail, William S. Farish's Code of Honor (202 votes), moves into the second spot in this week's rankings. Trained by Shug McGaughey, Code of Honor, who won the Travers Stakes (G1) at Saratoga on Aug. 24, is being pointed to Saturday's “Win and You're In” Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) at 1 ¼ miles.
Both the Awesome Again and the Jockey Club Gold Cup will be televised on NBCSN, beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET as a part of the “Breeders' Cup Challenge Series: Win and You're In – Presented by America's Best Racing.”
Also scheduled to run in the Jockey Club Gold Cup is Centennial Farm's 6-year-old Preservationist (187 votes), who moves up to third place this week. Trained by Jimmy Jerkens, Preservationist has won both the Suburban (G2) at Belmont Park and the Woodward (G1) at Saratoga this year.
China Horse Club International, WinStar Farm and Head of Plains Partners' 5-year-old Yoshida (JPN) (148 votes), third in the Woodward, rises from sixth to fourth place this week, one spot above TVG Pacific Classic (G1) winner Higher Power (142 votes) for Hronis Racing. Trained by John Sadler, Higher Power is also scheduled to start in the Awesome Again.
Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable's 4-year-old Vino Rosso (104 votes), winner of the Gold Cup at Santa Anita (G1), is now in sixth place just ahead of Elate in seventh.
Charles Fipke's 6-year-old Seeking the Soul (70 votes), who captured the “Win and You're In” Stephen Foster (G2) at Churchill Downs, is now in eighth place.
Mott's third horse in the Top 10 is Juddmonte Farm's 3-year-old Tacitus (62 votes), who was runner-up in the Belmont Stakes (G1), Jim Dandy (G2) and the Travers. Tacitus, a gray/roan son of Tapit, moves up from 11th to ninth place. Gary and Mary West's TVG.com Haskell Invitational (G1) winner Maximum Security (46), who was scratched from last Saturday's Pennsylvania Derby (G1) due to colic, is now in 10th place.
The Breeders' Cup Classic Rankings, a weekly rating of the top 10 horses in contention for the $6 million Breeders' Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita Park, Nov. 2, are determined by a panel of leading Thoroughbred racing media, horseplayers and members of the Breeders' Cup Racing Directors/Secretaries Panel. Rankings are announced each week through Oct. 15 and can be found on the Breeders' Cup website along with the list of voting members.
In the Breeders' Cup Classic Rankings, each voter ranks horses by assigning their allotted votes on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 system in descending order.
Breeders' Cup Classic Rankings Top 10 – Sept. 24, 2019 *
|Rank||Horse||Total Votes||First Place Votes||Previous Week|
|2||Code of Honor||202||0||3|
|8||Seeking the Soul||70||0||13|
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