$6,000.000 3yo&Up 1 1/4m Dirt Weight 3yo 122lbs Older 126lbs
Well, folks… it doesn’t get any bigger than this. We’ve waited all year… the forum fights, the ups, the downs, the highs, the lows, the yelling, the screaming… to quote Jim McKay, “…the thrill of victory, and the agony of defeat…”. It’s the big one, the 2023 BC Classic (GI), a mile and a quarter test for the best horses, the best barns… the very best, here at HRP. It seems surreal, not having Mike here to guide me, make suggestions and a hearty “you’ll do fine” to make me feel better about the drivel I spout, but the show must go on, and what a show this one should be. The reigning champion, a host of up-and-coming three-year-olds trying to displace him and the other veterans. It adds up to be one heck of a race.
So, which way did I go… pure chalk baby. Until they can take him down, Individuation will be the top of the heap to me, and I give him top billing today. Three wins, a pair of runner-up efforts and a third from seven starts… his only off the board race was his ’23 debut in the Pegasus… but Mb Stables knows how to turn a down race into a learning experience, and I see another big effort from the gray today.
Another horse that comes into this one with a real head of steam is Spankersville. The 5yo entire has five wins this year, all graded races, and won both GI’s leading up to this one. He’s won on wet, dry, green, brown… He just goes out there and gives his all, each and every time they put the jockey up. He may need a bit of racing luck with his off-the-pace style, but he seems to make his own luck.
I’m going to give the rags-to-riches horse a shot today as well… in Feb, you could have plunked down a wee bit of cash and walked away with a five-time winner, three of those graded stakes, and Lets Celebrate couldn’t have been named better. He was laid up from Dec of ’21 to Feb of ’23, won that tag race by four and the rest is like a movie script… it’s just a matter of how this act place out.
So, there’s my picks… I’m sure you have yours and this is another BC Day that will bring a lot of joy, and yet some real heartbreak… but at the end of the day, nobody loses… it’s a great sport, a great group of horses, trainers… and the fans can really sink their teeth into this one. Congratulations and Best of Luck to everyone involved.
Here’s The Field –
COZMAN 4 / 12 / 5 Willie’s Green Card 4 / 6 / 1