- The final two Breeders Cup Win and You’re In Races are Saturday at Royal Ascot
- Champions Day Across the pond includes two ritzy Group 1 races
- Where can we find betting value in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes & Champion Stakes?
On Wednesday the final North American Breeders Cup Win and You’re In race was contested at Keeneland. The World Championships are coming up, the first weekend of November at the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club near San Diego. Globally, two more spots remain. Both are up for grabs Saturday at Royal Ascot.
Palace Pier and Baaeed are the top contenders in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, while Mishriff and Adayar are vying for favoritism in the Champion Stakes. The venue for both, Ascot, has been hosting races since 1711 and is the grandest and high end the sport has to offer.
So who should we bet on Saturday? Let’s look at odds and consider where we can find value.
2021 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes Odds
|Master of Seas||+750|
Odds as of October 14
The Queen Elizabeth II Stakes is a one-mile turf event that was first run in 1955. Trainer Saeed bin Suroor, who works exclusively for Godolphin, the racing stable owned by the ruling party of Dubai, has captured the event a record five times. The purse is £1.1 million. Post time is slated for 10:10 am EST with the winner getting an expense-paid trip to the Breeders Cup Mile. TV coverage of Ascot on Saturday is provided by Fox Sports 2.
Palace Pier has won nine times during a 10 race career that began in August 2019. The one setback was in this race last year when The Revenant got the better of him. He has bounced back with four straight wins, including three Group 1 triumphs.
The track conditions were not perfect last year for the QE2, and perhaps that can be blamed for Palace Pier’s third-place effort. Since then, he has been perfect.
Baaeed is five-for-five after debuting in early June. He won his Group 1 debut in France last month.
Finishing behind Baaeed last time out was Order of Australia, who won a Breeders Cup race last year, but recently didn’t perform particularly well in a prep race at Keeneland.
Can lightning strike twice? It almost has already. The Revenant was the runner-up in this race in 2019, before winning it last year.
Though The Revenant has not won this year, his three results have all been pretty good (second, third and fourth) against top competition.
Godolphin has two options. Three-year-old Master of Seas, trained by Charlie Appleby, has three wins in seven starts including a Group 3 victory in April. Benbatyl is a seven-year-old conditioned by bin Suroor. His career earnings are just shy of $8 million. He has one win in four tries at Ascot but is coming off a victory in a Group 2 event at Newmarket.
Queen Elizabeth II Stakes Best Bet: Baaeed
There are several options that intrigue in here, but it comes down to the veteran established tougher than nails older horse in Palace Pier, and the super talented up-and-comer Baaeed. Though Palace Pier is the more likely winner, there is more value in Baaeed. If Baaeed wins this race, it will be a long time before he isn’t the favorite in a race going forward.
2021 Champion Stakes Odds
Run since 1877, at times over the years The Champion Stakes has been the richest race in the world. It is now worth £1.2 million, the highest figure of the year in the UK. The winner earns a berth to the Breeders Cup Turf. The one-mile-and-two-furlong test will begin at 10:50 am EST.
It must be a big race when the Epsom Derby winner, Adayar, is not the favorite.
Trained by Appleby for Godolphin, Adayar backed up the Derby win by beating today’s top rival Mishriff in the King George Stakes.
So why isn’t Adayar the heavy chalk? He just ran. He was fourth in the Prix De l’Arc de Triomphe on October 3.
Meanwhile, Mishriff, who captured the world’s priciest race earlier this year in Saudi Arabia, rebounded from the King George by destroying the field in August’s Juddmonte International.
Mishriff has had plenty of time to rest and recover since that effort.
Seven-year-old gelding Addeybb is the defending champion in this race and is certainly viable to repeat.
Addeybb has won one of three races this year. Last time out he finished second in July’s Coral Eclipse Stakes. Mishriff was third that day.
Dubai Honour is stepping up in class following three straight wins. He overcame poor racing luck to win a Group 2 event two weeks ago and deserves the opportunity to try this caliber of opponent.
Sealiway ran a very impressive fifth in the Arc after a runner-up performance in a field of 19 at Chantilly in June. He doesn’t win a lot but is competitive with good horses and in excellent form. He ran fifth in the Breeders Cup last year.
Champion Stakes Best Bet: Dubai Honour
Mishriff performed poorly in this race last year and was beaten handily by Adayar when they recently got together. Adayar is a very reasonable choice, but he just ran and seemed to be tiring down the stretch. Though Dubai Honour hasn’t had a long rest either, he has been running great, deserves this opportunity at the top horses, and the price is right.