Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes 2018 Picks
On one of the biggest days of their October meet, Keeneland Race Course on Saturday plays host to three 'Win and You're In' races for qualification to the Breeders' Cup World Championships on November 2 and 3. Included in that is the (G2) Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes, which will send the winner directly to the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint.
Run at a distance of six furlongs on the Keeneland dirt, the Thoroughbred Club has drawn a full field of 10 fillies and mares age three and older to race for a share of the $250,000 purse.
Shipping in from her native California, Miss Sunset (morning line favorite at odds of 3-1) has been having a solid racing season, finishing in the money all six of her starts in 2018 with three wins.
Going back to last year, she captured the (G2) Raven Run Stakes on the Keeneland dirt, and more recently ran second at Keeneland in the (G1) Madison Stakes, only a nose back of 2017 Thoroughbred Club winner Finley’sluckycharm.
Having previous good results on a particular race track is always a positive handicapping angle, and Miss Sunset is a serious contender to finish on top here.
- 012017 Runner Up Takes Another Shot
- 02Experience Counts For Curlin’s Approval
- 03Betting The Breeders’ Cup World Championships
2017 Runner Up Takes Another Shot
After finishing second in this race last year Chalon (4-1 ML odds) is back to try and improve on that position for 2018. Lightly raced with only four starts since then, she followed that up with a second consecutive runner-up finish at Keeneland in the (G2) Raven Run Stakes, just a half-length back of Miss Sunset.
In three starts so far this year she has a pair of lower-level stakes wins and yet another runner-up finish in the (G3) Vagrancy Handicap at Belmont Park. An extremely versatile mare, she’s been in the money in nine of her 11 lifetime starts.
Expect Chalon to be up close and tracking the pace before putting in her best run as the field turns for home.
Due to the fact she’ll be making her first start since May, bettors may shy away from Happy Like A Fool (10-1 ML odds) but she’s an intriguing option as the only three-year-old filly in the field.
In her short career she started racing in the United States by getting her maiden win in her first try, before she was shipped over to the UK where she raced twice, including grabbing the second-place spot in the (G2) Queen Mary Stakes at Ascot.
Back on home soil, she promptly won the (G3) Matron Stakes at Belmont, and most recently won the (G3) Miss Preakness Stakes at Pimilico.
If she’s recovered from whatever problem kept her away from the track since then, Happy Like A Fool appears to have lots of upside and isn’t overly matched in this field.
Experience Counts For Curlin’s Approval
Although it has been awhile since her last graded-stakes win, Curlin’s Approval (5-1 ML odds) probably has the most top-level experience of any horse in the field and comes in from Gulfstream Park with two wins in her last three starts.
Based on class alone, she’s a solid bet to get up for at least a piece of the top-four prize money here.
The Thoroughbred Club of America Stakes goes Saturday, October 6 from Keeneland Race Course. It’s race #7 of 11 on the card, with a post time of 4:05 PM Eastern.
Thoroughbred Club of America Picks
- 1) #3 – Miss Sunset (3-1)
- 2) #9 – Chalon (4-1)
- 3) #6 – Happy Like A Fool (10-1)
- 4) #8 – Curlin’s Approval (5-1)
Betting The Breeders’ Cup World Championships
Over the past nine years, the winner of the TCA Stakes has gone on to win the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint four times, making it a key handicapping race through your preferred online racebook account.