Tuley's Thoroughbred Takes for 2021 Breeders' Cup at Del Mar (11/5 and 11/6)

By Dave Tuley  (VSiN.com senior reporter) 

November 4, 2021 08:20 AM
Derrynane

Football season is in full swing, but there’s still time to sneak in some horse racing wagers, so Team Tuley continues to look for value at tracks from coast to coast. But this Friday and Saturday, we’re focusing on the Breeders’ Cup at Del Mar.

I’ve had a lot of success over the years with my long-shot picks in the BC, primarily because we get very high-quality horses that the public overlooks at great prices. But there can obviously be long stretches between the winners (which usually make up for it), so I’m glad to offer the picks from my handicapping crew – including Rampart race and sports book manager Duane Colucci, Ed Sehon (Mr. Ed from his “Saratoga on (about) $100 a Day” reports) and John Lauro – to give more depth to our portfolio and cash more overall tickets. The multiple points of view also helps in building vertical and horizontal tickets. For the uninitiated, vertical tickets are within the same race like exactas, trifectas and superfectas while horizontal tickets are multi-race wagers like pick 3’s, pick 4’s, etc.

Here are our plays for Saturday's second day of the Breeders' Cup. Plays for Friday’s first day are below. Colucci and Sehon had a great day of picking the ponies on Friday as they both had Twilight Gleaming ($12.40) to win the opening BC race, the Juvenile Turf Sprint, and then Colucci also gave out Pizza Bianca ($21.80) in the Juvenile Fillies Turf. In addition, Colucci and Sehon both hit the first four legs of the Late Pick 5 before Sehon suffered one of the worst "Bad Beats" I've ever seen in horse racing.

In the last BC race of the day, the Juvenile Turf, Sehon's ticket was live to four horses, including the favorite #1 Modern Games with a "will pay" of $584. The horse in the next stall, #2 Albahr (coincidentally my pick in that race) flipped and fell in the starting gate and had to be scratched. #1 Modern Games was also announced as a scratch, but the veterinarians said he could run. Stewards determined he would have to run for purse money only and that all wagers on him would be refunded or transferred to the post-time favorite for multi-race wagers like Sehon's Pick 5. Modern Games ended up winning the race, but Sehon lost because the favorite, #3 Dakota Gold, didn't finish second as the winner for pari-mutuel purposes. So, Sehon (and any followers) had all five winners but came up empty. Now that's a Bad Beat!

I went 0-for-4 with my picks after the scratch (though I had 2nd-, 3rd- and 4th-place finishers, all at decent prices, so most of my long shots were live) and Lauro lost his lone selection, but we all hope for a better day on Saturday.

SATURDAY'S PLAYS

Filly and Mare Sprint: Del Mar Race No. 4 (3:05 p.m. ET/12:05 p.m. PT)

John Lauro likes #6 Bella Sofia (5-2 morning line). “Bella Sofia is a strong play to upset Gamine. She was supplemented to this race for $100,000. Connections and clockers say she is ready for the top prize here.”

Dave Tuley like #1 Proud Emma (20-1 morning line). “Gamine won this race last year and hasn’t lost since (barely even been headed in four races). I believe that IF she’s to lose, it'll be because of being pushed too hard early by Bella Sofia or Edgeway. I’ve heard others saying the Ce Ce would be helped the most by a speed duel, but I believe she’ll be too close to the pace and could get drawn into it. So, Proud Emma is my choice as the top upsetter for trainer Peter Miller, who is hitting at 33 percent with hot jockey Flavien Prat the past two months. Proud Emma also has a little bit of a home-course advantage with two wins and two seconds in four starts over the Del Mar dirt (toss out the poor turf effort at DMR). Wager: Win and Place.”

All-BC Stakes Pick 3: Del Mar Races Nos. 5-7 (3:40 p.m. ET/12:40 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes a $1 Pick 3 (cost $32)

Race 5: 1,3,8,9

Race 6: 1,8

Race 7: 1,6,7,12

Turf Sprint: Del Mar Race No. 5 (3:40 p.m. ET/12:40 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes a four-horse exacta box. “Anticipating inflated Breeders’ Cup exotic payoffs, I’m willing to go four deep with #1 Glass Slippers (6-1 morning line), #3 Golden Pal (7-2), #8 Caravel (20-1) and #9 Kimari (6-1) — in an effort to cash pricey ticket. Wager: Exacta box of 1,3,8 and 9.”

Dave Tuley likes #1 Glass Slippers (6-1). “I like to bet defending BC champions. For one thing, they’ve proven they can do it against this level of competition. But I also believe that the connections of such horses get single-minded after BC success and their only goal is to get back to the limelight and do it again. So, I’m not concerned with Glass Slippers’ three third-place finishes this year as I see those as just prep races for Saturday’s race where she should be able to sit off the pace and make one big run down the stretch. Wager: Win (no Place unless she drifts up to 10-1). 

Dirt Mile: Del Mar Race No. 6 (4:19 p.m. ET/1:19 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes #8 Eight Rings (10-1 morning line). “Expensive ($520,000) 4-year-old son of Empire Maker turns back to a mile, gets new rider (J.J. Hernandez) and sports three blazing works over seaside oval. While other Bob Baffert-trained BC entries possess higher profiles, this overlooked guy’s poised to explode in stretch. Wager: Win and Place.”

Dave Tuley likes #7 Snapper Sinclair (12-1 morning line). “I like that Mr. Ed is going with a price play, but I like another mid-range horse in #7 Snapper Sinclair. He was fourth in the Dirt Mile back in 2019 at Santa Anita. He also finished fourth over in Dubai back in March, but he’s had three solid races (all on the turf) since returning to the states. I see no reason he can’t carry his turf form over to the dirt to pull the upset, and I think I have the better closing jockey in Rosario. Wager: Win and Place.” 

Filly and Mare Turf: Del Mar Race No. 7 (4:59 p.m. ET/1:59 p.m. PT)

Duane Colucci likes #4 Rougir (6-1 morning line). “Winner of the Prix de l’Opera is definitely peaking now. This 3-year-old beat last year’s winner of this race in France and still gets 4 pounds vs. her today! Bet 4 to Win and key 4 over 6,7 and 12 in exactas, trifectas and reverse.”

Dave Tuley likes #2 Pocket Square (15-1 morning line). “I first looked at defending champ Audarya – again, not too concerned with the 0-for-4 record this year as she’s been pointing at defending her title. However, I don’t like her short odds in such a large field. Besides, foreign horses don’t fare as well in this race as other turf races, so I instead landed on #2 Pocket Square. She’s also a foreigner, but has been in the states since May and has been consistently closing against all competition. Irad Ortiz Jr. should be able to give her a ground-saving trip from the inside post and have her in position for the late run to the wire. Wager: Win and Place.”

Sprint: Del Mar Race No. 8 (5:38 p.m. ET/2:38 p.m. PT)

Dave Tuley likes #4 Matera Sky (20-1 morning line). “I’ve heard several people saying they’re passing this race (and none of my friends here are picking it) as they expect #2 Jackie’s Warrior to romp. However, the favorite has won this race just three times in the last 20 years, so I’m willing to take a shot. Now, you won’t see much by looking at the PPs for Matera Sky, but he’s obviously a high-quality horse with a trip to Dubai and has run some fast races in Japan. He has a case of seconditis (9-of-35 in lifetime and 4-of-8 recently), but I’m fine with that at this price. Wager Win and Place, but I also like the closer, #3 C Z Rocket, plus it’s not the worst idea to have an exacta box with 2,3 and 4.”

All-BC Stakes Pick 4: Del Mar Races Nos. 9-12 (6:20 p.m. ET/3:20 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes $0.50 all-BC stakes Pick 4 (cost $54)

Race 9: 3,6,10

Race 10: 1,3,8

Race 11: 3,6,13

Race 12: 4,5,6,8

Duane Colucci likes $0.50 all-BC stakes Pick 4 (cost $50)

Race 9: 3,4,6,9,10

Race 10: 1,2,3,4

Race 11: 1,4,5,10,13

Race 12: 5

Mile: Del Mar Race No. 9 (6:20 p.m. ET/3:20 p.m. PT)

Duane Colucci likes #3 Space Blues (3-1 morning line). “This Charles Appleby trainee has been crushing the competition lately, both in France and Britain. Space Blues should enjoy going one more furlong and jockeyWilliam Buick has vast international experience. Looks to like a firm to good course and has carried more weight than today as well. Bet 3 to Win and key 3 over 4 and 6 in exactas, trifectas and reverse.”

Dave Tuley likes #12 Pearls Galore (12-1 morning line). “For my money, if you like favored Space Blues, I prefer Pearls Galore at 12-1 as this 4-year-filly just lost to Space Blues by two lengths. She also had two Group 3 wins in Ireland this summer before her two runner-up finishes, so she’s in great form. Wager: Win and Place. Back when I would list my 1-2-3-Longshot plays in BC races instead of just focusing on my top choices, #4 Raging Bull (15-1) would have been my “Longshot” play. He probably needs a fast pace, but could be circling the field late, so I’m tossing him in my exotics with 3 and 12.” 

Distaff: Del Mar Race No. 10 (7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT)

Dave Tuley likes #9 As Time Goes By (15-1 morning line). “Letruska is a deserving favorite as she’s been kicking butt in the East and Midwest. But, no offense, there’s speed and then there’s California speed as this is her first race at Del Mar. She’s going to get pressed a lot hard up front and I’m looking for a distaffer to come from off the pace. As Time Goes By should be able to bid her time just off the pace and have first run on the other closers turning for home. Wager: Win and Place.”

Turf: Del Mar Race No. 11 (7:40 p.m. ET/4:40 p.m. PT)

Dave Tuley likes #9 Sisfahan (12-1 morning line). “This 3-year-old colt won the German Derby back in July, but has been flying under the radar despite a second-place finish to Torquator Tasso in a Group 1 race in September. Tarnawa, the 9-5 favorite in this race, finished second to Torquator Tasso in the Arc de Triomphe, so Sisfahan is in pretty good company at a much better price! Wager: Win and Place.”

Classic: Del Mar Race No. 12 (8:40 p.m. ET/5:40 p.m. PT)

Duane Colucci likes #5 Knicks Go (5-2 morning line). “Knicks Go should be off to the races from the get-go. I don’t believe there will be a hot pace. Joel Rosario should have an easy trip wire to wire. Trainer Brad Cox is holding all the cards. Bet 5 to Win and key 5 over 4,7,8 and 9 in exactas and trifectas.”

Dave Tuley likes #9 Max Player (8-1). “I’ve always said that I’d rather be on a horse early rather than late. That’s because, playing long shots like I do, if a horse scores at a price, a ton of people jump on the bandwagon and you usually never see that price again. Max Player was my Derby pick this year, and finished fifth. Fortunately, I was able to get my money back when he won Belmont’s Grade 2 Suburban at 11-1 in July. I didn’t bet him when he won the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup at Saratoga on Labor Day Weekend as he was just 7-2 (kinda proving my earlier point). Anyway, this is the Breeders’ Cup Classic, so we get an odds boost against the increase in competition, but I still believe this should set up for his closing style and that his true odds are closer to 9-2 or 5-1. Wager: Win (no Place price unless he drifts up to 10-1, which is possible if the public gravitates to other contenders).

FRIDAY'S PLAYS

Juvenile Turf Sprint: Del Mar Race No. 6 (5:50 p.m. ET/2:50 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes #6 Twilight Gleaming (4-1 morning line). “When it comes to young sprinters, it’s very hard to beat those from the Wesley Ward barn. After placing last Spring at Keeneland and breaking her maiden at Belmont, the conditioner shipped his speedy filly to England and France where she finished second and first, respectively. Irad Ortiz Jr. rejoins well-traveled gal where the surf meets the turf. Wager: Win and box in exactas with 8 and 9.”

Duane Colucci also likes #6 Twilight Gleaming (4-1 morning line). “Irad Ortiz Jr. teams with Wesley Ward, a master with 2-year-olds sprinters. Steady workouts since her return from France should make her ready. Bet 6 to Win and key 6 over 3,5,8 and 9 in exactas, trifectas and reverse.”

Dave Tuley likes #11 Derrynane (12-1 morning line). “In a 5-furlong sprint like this, most bettors are looking for a speed horse to go wire-to-wire, but just as often a closer comes out of the clouds to win these, especially on turf. This New York-bred filly (pictured above) won from off the pace for first win at Saratoga under my favorites closing jockey Joel Rosario and then trainer Christophe Clement took her to Canada and she pulled off the same feat. She’s definitely stepping up in class, but Clement knows how to place his horses and he’s hitting 24 percent when using Rosario the past two months. Wager: Win and Place.”

Del Mar  Races Nos. 6-10 (5:50 p.m. ET/2:50 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes the following $0.50 all-Breeders Cup Pick 5 (cost $90)

Race 6: 6,8,9

Race 7: 6

Race 8: 1,4,5,7,9

Race 9: 1,10,12

Race 10: 1,3,6,10

Duane Colucci likes the following $0.50 all-Breeders Cup Pick 5 (cost $80)

Race 6: 3,5,6,8,9

Race 7: 4,6

Race 8: 1,2,9,14

Race 9: 1,8,12

Race 10: 3,6

Juvenile Fillies: Del Mar Race No. 7 (6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT)

Dave Tuley likes #4 Tarabi (12-1 morning line). “The chalk has won this race only once since 2010, so you know I love it – and I hit with Take Charge Brandi in 2014 at $125.40 and Vequist last year at $15.20. This is a short six-horse field and my colleagues are mostly avoiding it because of undefeated front-running favorite Echo Zulu (Sehon singles her in his Pick 5). And most people will cross out Tarabi because she chased Echo Zulu around the track in the Grade 1 Spinaway and wasn’t able to pass her, but we see horses turn the tables all the time, and we especially give these young 2-year-old the benefit of a doubt that they’ll improve. Wager: Win and Place.”

Juvenile Fillies Turf: Del Mar Race No. 8 (7:10 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes #7 Consumer Spending (8-1 morning line), who is his price play of the day. “Steadily improving daughter of More Than Ready cuts back to mile for superior trainer Chad Brown, who adds top rider Flavien Prat for West Coast debut. Potential payoff is icing on the cake. Wager: Win and Place.”

Duane Colucci likes #1 Pizza Blanca (5-1 morning line). Even though Christophe Clement has yet to win a BC race, he is a top-notch trainer. This horse had a solid yet rough run at Woodbine. Should move forward here. Clement shows a $2.93 ROI with 2-year-olds. Bet 1 to Win and key 1 over 2,9 and 14 in exactas, trifectas and reverse.”

Dave Tuley likes #6 Hello You (10-1 morning line). “In these turf races, I like to look at the Europeans. They haven’t won this race since 2013, but I like a trio of them with #6 Hello You on top. She won the Group 2 Rockfel Stakes at Newmarket last time out over #3 Cachet. In her prior race, she had trouble in a Group 3 race won by #13 Miss En Scene, who many regard as the top invader here. Wager on 6 to Win and let’s use the 3,6 and 13 in exotics.”

Juvenile: Del Mar Race No. 9 (7:50 p.m. ET/4:50 p.m. PT)

Duane Colucci likes #8 Barossa (10-1 morning line). “Barossa was able to improve second time running a mile. Bet Win on this Baffert entry at a price, plus he has the highest Beyer going a route in this field. But I’ll be honest: make a three-horse box with 1,8 and 12 because this race looks chalky.”

Dave Tuley likes #4 Pappacap (15-1 morning line). “This isn’t the last race of the day, but it’s actually the marquee event as the winner will likely move to the top of the Kentucky Derby future-book list (or very close to it). This Mark Casse trainee won her stakes debut in the Grade 2 Best Pal at 6 furlongs and then came up short as she stretched out in her next two outings. But that’s why we’re getting such a juicy price. She should be sitting just off the pace under veteran jockey Joe Bravo and have a great shot turning for home. Wager: Win and Place.”.  

Juvenile Turf: Del Mar Race No. 10 (8:30 p.m. ET/5:30 p.m. PT)

Ed Sehon likes #10 Portfolio Company (6-1 morning line). “This young turfer has been on my Watch List since his first-out maiden win at Saratoga in mid-July. A win here would complete Chad Brown-Flavien Prat daily double with #7 Consumer Spending in Race No. 8 — and increase the value of Brown’s stock portfolio. Wager: Win and bet top and bottom in exactas with 1,3 and 6.”

Duane Colucci likes #6 Mackinnon (8-1 morning line). “Doug O’Neill trainee is 2-for-2 here, where the turf meets the surf. O’Neill has been on fire the past couple of weeks, plus the horse has solid workouts. Check out Oct. 15 and 22. Bet 6 to Win and key 6 over 2,3 and 10 in exactas, trifectas and reverse.”

John Lauro also likes #6 Mackinnon (8-1 morning line). “O’Neill trained. Great closing kick. Strong Win bet. Also use with #1 Modern Games in exacta box.”

Dave Tuley likes #2 Albahr (6-1 morning line). “This is a shorter price than I usually shoot for — and hopefully it doesn’t get bet lower – but Albahr is my most likely winner if he can avoid a troubled trip from this inside post in a crowded field. I trust jockey Frankie Dettori, plus this gelding won three straight over in England before trainer Charles Appleby brought him over the pond early and they won the Grade 1 Summer Stakes at Woodbine for good measure. Wager on 2 to Win and I’ll also use my colleague’s picks (6 and 10) along win #1 Modern Games in exotics.”

 
 
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