From looking almost invincible, the final month’s build up to the Breeders’ Cup meeting has thrown up at least two reasons as to why Wise Dan can be prevented from defending his title in the Breeders’ Cup Mile.
Firstly, the six-year-old saw his nine-race winning streak brought to an end in the Shadwell Turf Mile and then he was given a perceived bad draw for the 2013 Mile, where he will break from stall eight of the 10-horse field.
Ladbrokes are currently offering the top price of 1/1 that Wise Dan wins the Breeders’ Cup Mile for the second successive year and despite these hiccups, this price remains well worth taking.
It is tough to forget Wise Dan’s 2012 victory when beating a field that included Excelebration, alongside 2013 Dubai World Cup winner Animal Kingdom and Moonlight Cloud.
Not only did he triumph, Wise Dan broke the track record, while coming within an eyelash of setting the world record anywhere over the distance of 1m.
This season started with further serene dominance, as the reigning horse of the year coasted to five victories without barely breaking sweat.
A change arrived last time though, as Wise Dan failed to reel in Silver Max in the Shadwell and these two will lock horns again in the Breeders’ Cup Turf.
The key that day was that Silver Max was allowed to track over to the inside rail and then dictate from the front.
A similar strategy could work at Santa Anita with Silver Max in stall three, but the fact that the race is run on turf and not polytrack, alongside being over 1m instead of 9f, should allow Wise Dan to bounce back to winning ways.
Stall eight is not too much of a hindrance either, if previous renewals of the race are anything to go by.
In three of the last four and five of the last seven years, the Breeders’ Cup Mile winner has broken from stall eight or higher.
This is interesting for leading European challenger Olympic Glory, who is 4/1 to win the Breeders’ Cup Mile after gaining what has been regarded as the optimum draw in stall five.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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