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This may not be the strongest team that the UK and Irish trainers have ever sent to the Breeders' Cup, but there does look to be a few with “place” chances at least.

We've taken a look at some of the leading lights to follow across Friday and Saturday's action in Del Mar.

Juvenile Turf Sprint

Before we get to the main card on Saturday, the Friday undercard offers a few chances for the British Juveniles to land an early blow, starting with the Juvenile Turf Sprint (9:50). As usual, Wesley Ward holds a strong hand for the home team, with both Kaufymaker and Twilight Gleaming looking to deliver on their lofty reputations. However, the presence of leading Irish juvenile, Twlight Jet offers some hope to upset the home favourites after he was an impressive winner of the Cornwallis Stakes at Newmarket last month. Go Bears Go would be a fairytale story for David Loughnane, and the application of first-time blinkers may help him to settle.

However, this race looks likely to be run at a very strong clip and so the Richard Hannon trained ARMOR makes a lot of appeal. He has shown himself to have a very high cruising speed and could be ideally suited by the strong pace set by the Wesley Ward pair. On decent ground, he should have no problem maintaining the gallop under Ryan Moore and could be underestimated in the market.

Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf - Friday

The Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (23:10) offers some early hope on Friday, with four European runners heading to post. HELLO YOU and MISS EN SCENE have both run well in the UK to suggest that they could be capable of landing this race, but this could instead be an opportunity for the French to score a point. MALAVATH has won her last 2 starts, including a Group 2 at Chantilly last time out and this step up to 1-mile should suit based on her pedigree. Francis-Henri Graffard has booked Ryan Moore for the ride and although she isn’t ideally drawn in stall 12, she could still be capable of causing an upset.

Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf - Friday

If the European team don’t win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (12:30am) on Friday night, something has gone badly wrong as Dubawi Legend, Albahr and Glounthaune all offer a lot of appeal. However, MODERN GAMES looks like the horse they all have to beat. He was an extremely impressive winner of the Tattersalls stakes in September and has done nothing but improve throughout this season. Saved for this race by Charlie Appleby, he has been given the plum draw in stall 1 and looks like to have a favourites chance.

Breeders' Cup Turf - Saturday

The Breeders’ Cup Turf (23:40) on Saturday night looks the main play, with the European team having a strong hand, led of course by Tarnawa. She is a relatively short price to take this race for the second year in a row and although things didn’t quite work out for her in the Arc, she sets a clear standard for the others to aim at. However, she is far from bombproof and with a wide draw to overcome she is likely to have a difficult passage through. The second in the market is the US-trained Domestic Spending. Chad Browns 4-year-old is a multiple Grade 1 winner, including both the Manhattan stakes at Belmont and perhaps crucially, the Hollywood Derby at this track last November. He rates a solid chance and is drawn better in stall 3.

Teona missed her Arc engagement to come here and if she can repeat the form she showed when winning the Prix Vermeille at Longchamp, she would have a chance for Roger Varian.

However, this race looks to be a great chance for the boys in blue to take home the £1.5m prize with Godolphin sending both YIBIR and Walton Street for the race, they could be the answer. YIBIR makes most appeal. At the start of the season, it was suggested that he was the leading 3-year-old for the Appleby team and although things didn’t immediately go to plan, he has bounced right back to form in recent months. Perhaps crucially, he has US form, having won the Jockey Club Invitational at Belmont Park in September, he could be ready to peak at the right time for the superb Appleby and Buick combination.

Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint - Saturday

The Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (19:40) also has a strong European theme, with last year’s hero Glass Slippers returning for another crack alongside the Prix de l’Abbaye winner A Case of You. Glass Slippers hasn’t been in the same form in 2021 as she showed 12 months ago and looked very one paced in the Abbaye, so it is likely that A Case of You will uphold that form, although the conditions at Del Mar will be much firmer than he has experienced for a while. He has been a revelation for Ado McGuinness this season and since winning on his comeback at Dundalk in March, he hasn’t looked back, although this will be a very different test.

In theory, they all have a lot to find with the likely favourite Golden Pal. He is the apple of his trainers’ eye and Wes Ward stated this week that if his charge breaks well from the gate he will win. That may be true, but with competition for the lead he is unlikely to get a freebie and could set the race up nicely for EMARAATY ANA. Kevin Ryan’s filly will love the conditions and has been drawn perfectly in stall 2, next door to Golden Pal in 3, so she should get an ideal pace to track under Andrea Atzeni and could cause the upset.

Breeders' Cup Filly and Mares - Saturday

The Breeders Cup Filly and Mares (20:59) also looks a solid point scoring opportunity for team Europe. Love is a warm order and with positive tactics being employed, if she can rediscover her best form, she will be very hard to beat. However, she hasn’t looked the same horse in her most recent starts and although she is reasonably drawn in stall 6, she will need to improve on her recent efforts. AUDARYA makes a lot more appeal. She won this race last year and looks to have been cleverly campaigned by James Fanshawe to peak at the right time to retain her crown.

She was only beaten half-a-length by Love in the Prince of Wales on her comeback at Royal Ascot and hasn’t really met her conditions since. She finished a creditable 4th in the Prix de l’Opera last month when she travelled like the winner for most of the race but struggled to quicken in the Heavy ground. She should reverse the form with the winner of that race, Rougir and despite a wide draw, the race could be run to suit if William Buick can get her into a handy position.

Breeders' Cup Mile - Saturday

Saturday's best bet may well be SPACE BLUES in the Breeders’ Cup Mile (22:20). He destroyed a quality field at Paris Longchamp last month, showing a truly remarkable turn of foot considering the conditions and with the track likely to suit, he could outclass his rivals in what looks to be an average renewal of the race.


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