Breeders’ Cup Pre-Entries Announced for 2020 World Championships

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Horses break from the starting gate during the 2015 Breeders' Cup World Championships at Keeneland. (Eclipse Sportswire)

Despite a pandemic, horsemen have supported this year's Breeders' Cup World Championships, where pre-entries are up 7% to 201 for this year's 14-race event Nov. 6-7 at Keeneland Race Course.

Last year there were 188 horses entered for the event, which also offered 14 races and was conducted at Santa Anita Park. The previous time the Breeders' Cup was contested at Keeneland, there were 200 pre-entries for 13 races.

Breeders' Cup pre-entries by year

Year    

Track    

Pre-entries

2020    

Keeneland    

201

2019    

Santa Anita Par

188

2018    

Churchill Downs

221

2017    

Del Mar    

187

2016    

Santa Anita Park

185

2015    

Keeneland    

200

Breeders' Cup reports that 39 international horses have been entered this year, despite added travel challenges. Top international trainer Aidan O'Brien said despite those extra hurdles, it was important to continue to support Breeders' Cup. The Irish-based trainer pre-entered 10 horses.

"Obviously, everybody has to be careful and very respectful of each other's space and have their own space," O'Brien said. "That's the most important thing, that everybody stays healthy. And we just felt it's important for the racing industry and everybody in the business, buying, selling, breeding, training. … It is important that the standard of the Breeders' Cup is kept up."

As for some top horses who had race options, Preakness Stakes-winning filly Swiss Skydiver has been entered in the Longines Breeders' Cup Distaff as first preference, while the Longines Breeders' Cup Classic is listed as her connections' second preference.

Trainer Ken McPeek said they'll look over the entries for both races for the Daredevil filly who earned fees-paid berths through the Breeders' Cup Challenge series. He said the decision is not set in stone.

Runhappy Metropolitan Handicap winner Vekoma has the Breeders' Cup Sprint as his first preference, and he's also entered in the Big Ass Fans Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile.

Filly Frank's Rockette looks like she'll take her four-race winning streak to the Sprint, where she'll face males off back-to-back Grade 2 wins against females. The Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint is her second preference.

There were 48 horses pre-entered who earned fees-paid berths through the Breeders' Cup.

For a list of all the horses, click here.

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