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Accelerate Leads Breeders’ Cup Classic Odds

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With the clock ticking down to the running of this year’s edition of the Breeders’ Cup, Accelerate leads the way as a +300 favorite on the Breeders’ Cup Classic odds.

After turning in a disappointing ninth-place finish in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, Accelerate returned to the form that earned the chestnut stallion an impressive victory at the 2017 San Diego Handicap. The five-year-old has been dominant in 2018, galloping to victory in five of his past six races ahead of Saturday afternoon’s running of the 2018 Breeders’ Cup Classic at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky.

In addition to last month’s win at the Awesome Again Stakes, the John Sadler-trained chestnut stallion has raced to victory in three other races at Santa Anita Park, including the San Pasqual Stakes, Santa Anita Handicap, and Gold Cup, but will be hitting the track at Churchill Downs this weekend for the first time in his career.

It remains a battle for second spot on the Breeders’ Cup odds, with McKinzie holding the edge at +450 to win the Classic, just ahead of Catholic Boy at +600, while West Coast and Roaring Lion lag at +650 and +800, respectively.

Trained by Bob Baffert, who is seeking a record fourth trip to the winner’s circle at this year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic, McKinzie has gotten his career off to a spectacular start. The three-year-old colt has picked up wins in four of his first five races, capped by an impressive win by two lengths at last month’s running of the Pennsylvania Derby.

A descendant of 2010 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense, McKinzie has also picked up wins in the Sham Stakes and Los Alamitos Futurity, and finished second to Bolt D’Oro back in March at the San Felipe Stakes.

 

Catholic Boy Riding Three-Race Winning Streak

Trained by former Todd Pletcher assistant Jonathan Thomas, Catholic Boy has tallied wins in three straight races, capped by a spectacular victory last time out in the Travers Stakes. Catholic Boy has also edged out this year’s second-place finisher in the Belmont Stakes on two occasions, forcing Analyze It to settle for second place in both the Pennine Ridge Stakes and Belmont Derby.

Roaring Lion makes his North American debut at this year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic after an impressive season over in the UK and Ireland. Also a descendant of Street Sense, the three-year-old colt closed out his year in England earlier this month with a victory in the one-mile Queen Elizabeth II Stakes.

That marked his fifth win of 2018 and his fourth straight victory, a run that featured victories in his only two previous 1.25-mile races, including last month’s Irish Champion Stakes and the Coral Eclipse.

The second of three Baffert-trained horses in this year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic, Seattle Slew descendant West Coast dominated with six victories in 2017. But the four-year-old colt has failed to find the winner’s circle this year, settling for second in three outings, including a loss to Accelerate at the Awesome Again Stakes.

Further down the Breeders’ Cup Classic odds, Mendelssohn sits at +900, just ahead of Yoshida at +1000, and Mind Your Biscuits at +1200, while Thunder Snow is pegged at +1400.

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