Big Race Showdown: Ballerina, Sword Dancer, Pat O’Brien Picks


For the fifth year in a row, America’s Best Racing is challenging some of the brightest minds in horse betting to come up with their top three picks for key races every weekend leading up to the Breeders’ Cup World Championships. The handicappers face off in what we like to call the “Big Race Showdown.”

weekend TV schedule

Friday, Aug. 27: 1 p.m.-7 p.m. ET on FS2; post time varies on TVG

Saturday, Aug. 28:
11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. on FS1; 3 p.m.-5 p.m. on FS2; 5 p.m.-6:30 p.m. on FOX; 6:30 p.m.-7 p.m. on FS2; post time varies on TVG

Sunday, Aug. 29:
1 p.m.-6:30 p.m. on FS2; post time varies on TVG

The players’ picks will be posted here and a running bankroll will be kept to track their success all year long. Bankrolls will be tabulated on the basis of $2 exacta and $2 trifecta box bets of each player’s top three selections. We will also be keeping track of which player correctly selects the most winners. 

Your players for the 2021 Breeders' Cup season are Ashley Mailloux (Project Lead, 1/ST Racing), Roberto Rodriguez (El Potro Roberto, DRF en Espanol), Nicolle Neulist (Chartcaller at Hawthorne Race Track and Arlington Park and a Freelance Writer), Louis Rabaut (Handicapper and Host, Horse Racing Happy Hour), Mike Somich (The Magic Mike Show, Somo Bombs Handicapper – The Racing Dudes), John Piassek (Handicapper and Writer, America’s Best Racing), Darwin Vizcaya (Handicapper and Host, La Trifecta from America’s Best Racing), Brian Zipse (Senior Writer for Horse Racing Nation and Host of HorseCenter), Naomi Tukker (Maryland Jockey Club Racing Analyst), Spencer Luginbuhl (Redboard Rewind Podcast from In the Money Media, The Daily Gallop), Edison Hatter (In the Money Media Analyst, Meadowlands On-Air Host), and Mike Gandolfo (Handicapper and Host, Horse Racing Happy Hour).

Put our experts picks into play on AmWager. Sign up for an account this week using and make a deposit using promo code ‘ABR100’ and enjoy a 100% bonus match up to $100.

This week's races are the Ketel One Ballerina Stakes, a "Win and You're In" race at Saratoga Race Course for the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint; the Resorts World Casino Sword Dancer Stakes, a Saratoga qualifying race for the Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf;  and the Pat O’Brien Stakes from Del Mar, which offers a “Win and You’re In” berth to the Big Ass Fans Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile

NYRA’s Saratoga Live will provide full coverage of Saratoga’s Aug. 28 card. The action begins on FS1 at 11:30 a.m. ET and switches to FS2 in the afternoon before moving to a nationwide broadcast on FOX from 5 p.m. ET to 6:30 p.m. ET that will showcase the Runhappy Travers. The Pat O’Brien will be broadcast live on TVG as part of their comprehensive coverage of the seaside Southern California track.

newsletter sign-up

Stay up-to-date with the best from America's Best Racing!

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Instagram TikTok YouTube
Facebook Twitter Pinterest Instagram TikTok YouTube