A preview of sorts of the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint will take place Saturday at Keeneland in the Lexus Raven Run Stakes on Saturday. While it’s uncertain if any of the nine starters will return Nov. 5 at the World Championships at Keeneland, the seven-furlong sprint will mirror the distance for the division’s big showdown for distaff sprinters in the seven-furlong Filly and Mare Sprint.
1. Union Lake (6-1 morning-line odds): Speedy filly will benefit from a rail trip. She turned in a sharp blowout for this spot but she’s never raced beyond six furlongs and that added eighth of a mile could come back to haunt her with a fast filly breaking just outside of her.
JOCKEY: John Velazquez; TRAINER: John Terranova II
2. Smash Ticket (5-2): She’s coming off a big win in a Pimlico stakes and has enough speed to be a threat here. Yet, like Union Lake, she’s never been beyond six furlongs, making her a question mark in the final furlong.
JOCKEY: Kendrick Carmouche; TRAINER: Rob Atras
3. Republique (15-1): Makes her debut in a sprint stakes after taking a six-furlong allowance at Churchill Downs and unplaced finishes in turf and route stakes. Her speed figures are only mediocre, leaving little to get excited about against this field.
JOCKEY: Julien Leparoux; TRAINER: Saffie Joseph Jr.
4. Last Leaf (12-1): Had a three-race win streak snapped last time. Not coincidentally that was also her first start in that span in a graded stakes. She likes the distance but seems a notch below the top contenders here.
JOCKEY: Martin Garcia; TRAINER: Eddie Kenneally
5. Fingal’s Cave (4-1): She raced around two turns in her last two starts but before that she beat New York State-breds by a combined 17 1/2 lengths in a pair of sprints. The turnback from two turns should help her stamina and New York-based trainer Dave Donk is showing a lot of confidence by shipping here. She’s worth a long look.
JOCKEY: Joel Rosario; TRAINER: Dave Donk
6. Colorful Mischief (12-1): Was a competitive third in the Grade 3 Dogwood Stakes at Churchill Downs and will be a serious factor here if she can duplicate that effort. Trainer Todd Pletcher is having a strong meet with seven wins from his first 17 starters, and this filly can add to those impressive totals.
JOCKEY: Geraldo Corrales; TRAINER: Todd Pletcher
7. Freedom Speaks (6-1): Exits a pair of fast wins in her last two starts, but unfortunately they were on turf. Her lone dirt race was her lone loss in four races, so we’ll pass on her in this main track stakes.
JOCKEY: Florent Geroux; TRAINER: Jeremiah Englehart
8. Wicked Halo (4-1): Won her last three starts, capped by a solid win in the Grade 2 Prioress Stakes at Saratoga. She should be able to work out a nice, stalking trip in this field and looks like the one to beat.
JOCKEY: Tyler Gaffalione; TRAINER: Steve Asmussen
9. Midnight Stroll (10-1): Was a distant third in a Grade 3 stakes last time but should be better suited by the one-turn conditions here. Could be a factor on her best try.
JOCKEY: Luis Saez; TRAINER: John Terranova II
THE PICK: Wicked Halo
LIVE LONGSHOT: Colorful Mischief