The Triple Crown season seemed to be all about Animal Kingdom, the horse who won the Kentucky Derby and almost came back to beat Shackleford at the Preakness Stakes. Ruler On Ice was the surprise Belmont Stakes winner.
Of those three horses to capture a jewel of the Triple Crown, only Ruler on Ice is taking part in the real championship of racing Saturday, the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky.
And he’s a long shot again, with Uncle Mo, Havre de Grace and Flat Out stealing the spotlight.
But don’t rule Ruler on Ice out of winning the Classic. He has had only one bad race since winning the Belmont and still is 30-1 on the morning line for Saturday.
Ruler On Ice is probably best at a mile and a half, which opens up the possibility that Havre de Grace (a 4-year-old mare), Flat Out or Uncle Mo takes it.
The pressure seems too high on Uncle Mo, whose 3-year-old season has been limited with injuries. He missed the Triple Crown but rebounded in the Wood Memorial and King’s Bishop. Still, my thoughts would be he’s not ready for this challenge.
Havre de Grace is. She beat Flat Out in the Woodward and has only lost once in her last six tries.
Another horse worth a look is Stay Thirsty, whom I liked in the Belmont. He won the Travers Stakes in August and could be had for a nice price.
Without further ado, the picks for the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
Stephen Whyno was given a mythical $50 to bet with. Here are his picks:
$9 win 4 Ruler On Ice
$5 win 9 Stay Thirsty
$1 trifecta box: Ruler On Ice-Stay Thirsty-Havre de Grace-Flat Out 2-4-9-10 ($12)