Saturday, January 29 at Gulfstream Park is one of the biggest races of the year: the Pegasus World Cup (G1)! This $3 million race, covering a mile and an eighth on the Gulfstream dirt track, drew a field of nine handicap horses. The eyes of the racing world will be on Gulfstream on Saturday, and you can bet it from the comfort of your own home here in Canada!
Queen's Plate 2020 Picks
The 161st Queen’s Plate will be run September 12, 2020, after originally being scheduled for June. Clayton and Curlin’s Voyage are the favorites in a 14-horse field set to go 1 1/4 miles for $1 million.
The field has been drawn for the 2020 Queen's Plate, a ten-furlong horse race that pits the very best of Canada against each other in an event much like the Kentucky Derby in the United States. To win the Queen's Plate is to achieve the highest jewel in racing in the country.
The field for the 161st Queen's Plate was drawn on September 9.Queen's Plate Field
1. Sweepin Hard (50-1)
2. Merveilleux (10-1)
3. Belichick (30-1)
4. Truebelieve (30-1)
5. Holyfield (30-1)
6. Halo Again (5-1)
7. Glorious Tribute (30-1)
8. Olliemyboy (30-1)
9. Dotted Line (8-1)
10. Curlin's Voyage (5-2)
11. F F Rocket (50-1)
12. Calyton (2-1)
13. Mighty Heart (20-1)
14. Tecumseh's War (12-1)
Handicapping the Queen's Plate
Morning line favourite Clayton has been a highly regarded colt all year. Kevin Attard trains the son of Bodemeister, who won the Plate Trial last out and has won three of four stars overall. His lone loss came sprinting after a seven-month layoff in his 2020 debut. Clayton has high-speed figures and is bred to handle the distance.
Curlin's Voyage is the morning line second choice off a big victory in the $500,000 Woodbine Oaks on August 15 but could become the favourite by post time. The daughter of Curlin is trained by popular trainer Josie Carroll -who seeks her third Plate win - and she ran faster than the colts in the Plate Trial on the same card as the Woodbine Oaks. She was so good as a two-year-old that she was named Canada's Champion of 2019 with wins in races like the Mazarine and Princess Elizabeth.
Last year, trainer Steve Asmussen won the final two legs of the Canadian Triple Crown (Prince of Wales and Breeders' Stakes) with Tone Broke. Halo Again will try to do even better in 2020. The son of Speightstown was a narrow second in the Plate Trial but last year won the Coronation Futurity. He seeks to become the first horse to win the Queen's Plate after winning the Futurity since 1976.
F F Rocket will ship in from the United States for trainer Al Stall. He has been training on the synthetic surface at Presque Isle Downs. He broke his maiden there last out by two lengths going a mile and 70 yards. That was the first win of a four-race career.
Tecumseh's War is a Catherine Day Phillips trainee. He broke his maiden first out last year like a good thing, then has struggled to win since, but he missed by just a half-length last out and finished ahead of fellow Plate starter Mighty Heart.
Dotted Line was third in the Plate Trial. He is a Sid Attard trainee and will try to become the Attard family's first Plate winner. Dotted Line is three for eight over the track. Unlike many of the runners in here, he is graded stakes placed. He was a top juvenile, winning the Kingarvie and the Frost King.
Lightly raced Sweepin Hard would be a big surprise if he won. The son of Conquest Curlinate jumps up in class after breaking his maiden at the $40,000 claiming level last out.
Queen's Plate Free Picks
- $20 to Win, Clayton
- $10 to Win, Place, Show on Curlin's Voyage
- $5 to show on Tecumseh's War and Dotted Line
Queen's Plate Longshots
There are several longshots with very real chances in the Queen's Plate. Glorious Tribute is 30-1 on the morning line but ran well in the Plate Trial after a bad break to be fourth. Popular Holyfield, who is missing part of an ear, is 30-1 for trainer Catherine Day Phillips after breaking his maiden nicely last out. Merveilleux is 10 - 1 off a third-place effort in the Woodbine Oaks where she had traffic trouble but rallied gamely to finish two lengths behind the winner. Any of these horses could complete the Queen's Plate trifecta or superfecta.
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Queen's Plate Predictions
It will be difficult to beat the top two favourites in the 2020 Queen's Plate. Curlin's Voyage and Clayton are so talented and on paper are leagues ahead of the rest. That said, Curlin's Voyage will have to defeat colts, and Clayton will have to prove he has matured and can go the 1 1/4 mile distance. Fillies beating colts happens often in the Queen's Plate, including four times in the last decade. If history is anything to go by, Curlin's Voyage should be okay, but proving it on the track is still difficult as fillies are often lighter framed than their male counterparts.
That opens the door for other longer shots to sneak up into the trifecta. Play Halo Again, Merveilleux, and Holyfield with the top horses for maximum coverage.
The Kentucky Derby trail makes its way to Oklahoma on Friday, December 17 for the Remington Springboard Mile! The race drew a field of nine up-and-coming two-year-olds to go a mile on the main track. The prizes are rich: a $400,000 purse, as well as Road to the Kentucky Derby points (10-4-2-1) for the first four horses across the wire.
The Los Alamitos Futurity (G2), California’s most important Kentucky Derby Prep in December, is coming up on Saturday, December 11! The race features the most promising two-year-olds in California, set to go a mile and a sixteenth over the dirt at Los Alamitos Racecourse. The race offers a purse of $300,000, as well as Road to the Kentucky Derby points, apportioned 10-4-2-1 to the top four finishers.