Divisive as much as prestigious, the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile has always held intrigue on Championship day and beyond. Hope springs eternal with every running, but usually ends with disappointment come May. Many promising 2-year-olds have convincingly won the race only to either fail winning the Kentucky Derby six months later or veer off the difficult path to get there. In 28 runnings only one winner has worn the Roses the following year. Considering the Juvenile winner is usually Champion 2-year-old and early favorite for the Derby, this 4% winning percentage is especially baffling. As many lumps as the winners have taken, the Juvenile field as a whole usually includes strong contenders that hold up well for the Classics. The most recent Kentucky Derby consisted of 9 horses that raced in the 2011 Breeders Cup Juvenile, which represented close to half the field.
This 2012 Juvenile is knocked down in stature with the introduction of the new Kentucky Derby point system. In year’s past the winner was guaranteed a spot in the Derby gate given the huge graded earnings score, but this year the race only awards the winner 10 “points”, putting him on equal footing as the winners of such races as the Delta Jackpot, Grey Stakes, and Smarty Jones Stakes.
Nonetheless, the Juvenile still boasts a huge 2 million dollar purse and features some of the best 2-year-olds we’ve seen all year, including early Derby future book favorite Shanghai Bobby and second favorite Power Broker. The nine entrants have combined earnings of 28 points for the 2013 Kentucky Derby and look to earn even more Saturday.
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1)
Santa Anita Park
1 1/16 Miles
PPs: Click here
He’s Had Enough