With each horse holding onto the same positions as last week, 4-year-old McKinzie, owned by Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman, maintains his lead in the latest Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings over William S. Farish’s 3-year-old Code of Honor, and 4-year-old Vino Rosso, owned by Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable.
Trained by Bob Baffert, McKinzie (261 votes), winner of both the Alysheba Stakes (G2) and the Whitney (G1), has been the weekly leader since June 11. Code of Honor (245 votes), trained by Shug McGaughey, was placed first in the recent Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) at Belmont Park following disqualification of Vino Rosso (222 votes), who was placed second in that race. Owned by China Horse Club International, WinStar Farm and Head of Plains Partners, 5-year-old Yoshida (JPN) (159 votes), third in the Woodward Stakes (G1), moves up from fifth to fourth place this week. Hronis Racing’s Higher Power (126 votes), TVG Pacific Classic (G1) winner, rises from sixth into fifth place.
Fox Hill Farms’ 3-year-old Omaha Beach (111 votes), with a dramatic win of the Santa Anita Sprint Championship Stakes (G1) on Sunday, has re-entered the rankings at number six. Trained by Richard Mandella, Omaha Beach was making his first start since winning the Arkansas Derby (G1) on April 13. 6-year-old Preservationist (83 votes), ranked seventh this week, owned by Centennial Farm, was retired on Tuesday.
5-year-old mare Elate (80 votes), owned by Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider, drops from fourth to eighth place following her second-place finish in Sunday’s Juddmonte Spinster Stakes (G1) at Keeneland. Mongolian Stable’s 4-year-old Mongolian Groom (56 votes), who upset McKinzie in the Awesome Again Stakes (G1), drops from seventh to ninth place. Mongolian Groom is followed by Seeking the Soul (39 votes) in tenth. Seeking the Soul, owned by Charles Fipke and trained by Dallas Stewart, won the Stephen Foster (G2) at Churchill Downs in June, and was recently fourth in the Awesome Again Stakes at Santa Anita Park.
The Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings, a weekly rating of the top 10 horses in contention for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita Park, Nov. 2, are determined by a panel of leading Thoroughbred racing media, horseplayers and members of the Breeders’ Cup Racing Directors/Secretaries Panel. Rankings are announced each week through Oct. 15 and can be found on the Breeders’ Cup website along with the list of voting members. In the Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings, each voter ranks horses by assigning their allotted votes on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 system in descending order.
*Note – The Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings have no official bearing on qualification or selection into the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
Photo: McKenzie winning the Whitney at Saratoga, August 3, 2019. Coglianese Photos