2016 Breeders Cup Contenders: California Chrome, Arrogate, Frosted

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Of the 2016 Breeders Cup contenders, some believe there are none better than favorite California Chrome and, at just -110 odds, there is definitely great value here.

Top of the Breeders Cup Contenders: California Chrome

''I feel some pressure from the Chromies because I don't want to disappoint them,'' said jockey Victor Espinoza, who will race the five-year-old California Chrome.

There is good reason for the 2014 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner to be favored here.  He is 6-0 so far this year, winning his last two races by a combined 7 lengths.  California Chrome's earnings of $13,432,650 make him the richest horse in North American history.

“I can't tell you what a thrill it's been for me, especially the last two races,'' California Chrome owner Art Sherman said. ''Sometimes I get spooky and think, `Wow, what happens if he lets him run?' Victor said he wrapped up on him the last two races. Now we're a fresh horse coming into the Breeders' Cup, which is what I wanted.”

Arrogate (3-1) and Frosted (4-1) can certainly be considered solid enough contenders to California Chrome.

The Horse to Beat at This Year’s Breeders Cup: Arrogate

Arrogate, a 3-year-old son of Unbridled's Song, finished his last outing with an incredible 13 ½-length romp.

Even Espinoza calls Arrogate “the horse to beat” at this year’s Breeders Cup Classic.

“It all depends on how Chrome breaks from the gate and the post position. Arrogate is pretty much the horse to beat, not just from how he won the Travers, because all his wins have been impressive. He will be a challenge for California Chrome, as will Frosted. He's a horse I have to keep an eye on, too.

“In a race like the Classic, you have to worry pretty much about every single horse, because they're there for a reason and they're going to be focusing on California Chrome. I'm glad Arrogate is in the race, because it takes a little bit of pressure off Chrome.”

An Argument for Frosted as 2016 Breeders Cup Classic Top Contender

Steve Haskin of Bloodhorse writes of Frosted:

Frosted may be winless at a mile and a quarter, and he did run the worst race of his career in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic for some inexplicable reason (perhaps it was just one race too many after a long hard campaign), but that by no means eliminates his chances in this year’s Classic. He did close from 14th to finish fourth, beaten only three lengths, in the Kentucky Derby. He did finish second to American Pharoah in the Belmont Stakes, and his own time of 2:27 3/5 for the mile and a half would have won 11 of the last 12 Belmonts.

This year, Frosted destroyed his field in the 1 3/16-mile Al Maktoum Challenge Round 2 in Dubai, winning by five lengths, Haskin added.

More Contenders

Effinex finished 2nd to Triple Crown winner American Pharaoh last year and has two wins this year but will be without his regular jockey.

Melatonin, at 9-1 odds, won the Santa Anita Handicap and Gold Cup at Santa Anita.  This year’s Breeders Cup will be run at Santa Anita. 

California Chrome -110

Arrogate 3-1

Frosted 4-1

Melatonin 9-1

Effinex 15-1

Hoppertunity 15-1

Keen Ice 20-1

Shaman Ghost 20-1

War Story 35-1

Win the Space 35-1

- Ean Lamb, Gambling911.com

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