(Forte / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

From the Breeders’ Cup Media Team:

Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable’s 3-year-old Forte is the new king of the hill in the latest Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings, while the dominant victory by White Abarrio in last Saturday’s Whitney Stakes (G1) earned him second place in the poll. The Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings are a weekly rating of the top 10 horses in contention for the $6 million Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1), which will be run Nov. 4 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California.

Forte, winner of the Curlin Florida Derby (G1) and recent winner of the Jim Dandy Stakes (G2), rose from second place last week to the top of the rankings in Week #4. Trained by Todd Pletcher, Forte earned 301 votes, including 16 first-place votes. C Two Racing Stable and Antonio Pagnano’s 4-year-old White Abarrio, unranked last week, zoomed to the No. 2 slot with a 6 1/4-length romp in the Whitney. Trained by Rick Dutrow, White Abarrio received 218 votes. By winning the Whitney, White Abarrio also earned an automatic berth into the Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In.

Three-year-olds Geaux Rocket Ride, Mage, and Arcangelo fill the next three positions in the rankings. Pin Oak Stud LLC’s Geaux Rocket Ride, winner of the TVG.com Haskell Stakes (G1), is third with 212 votes. Mage, who won the Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (G1), is fourth with 210 votes, and Blue Rose Farm’s Arcangelo, the Belmont Stakes (G1) winner, is fifth with 185 votes.

Godolphin’s Cody’s Wish, who had been No. 1 in the rankings for the first three weeks, dropped to sixth place (129 votes) following his third-place finish as the odds-on favorite in the Whitney.

Mike Pegram, Karl Watson, and Paul Weitman’s Hollywood Gold Cup Stakes (G1) winner Defunded is seventh with 99 votes, and is followed in eighth by Lucky Seven Stable’s Rattle N Roll, second in the Stephen Foster Stakes (G1), who received 94 votes.

Joining the top 10 for the first time is Jeff Drown’s 4-year-old Zandon, who finished second in the Whitney. Zandon ranks ninth with 66 votes. Bruce Lunsford’s Art Collector, winner of the Pegasus World Cup Invitational Stakes presented by Baccarat (G1), remains in 10th with 64 votes.

The Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings are determined by a panel of leading Thoroughbred racing media, horseplayers, and members of the Breeders’ Cup Racing Directors/Secretaries Panel. Rankings will be announced each week through Oct. 10. A list of voting members can be found here.

In the Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings, each voter rates horses on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 system in descending order.

Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings – Aug. 8, 2023*

Rank Horse Votes First-Place Votes Previous Week
1 Forte 301 16 2
2 White Abarrio 218 3 0
3 Geaux Rocket Ride 212 3 4
4 Mage 210 1 5
5 Arcangelo 185 1 6
6 Cody’s Wish 129 3 1
7 Defunded 99 2 8
8 Rattle N Roll 94 3 7
9 Zandon 66 0 20
10 Art Collector 64 0 10

*Note – The Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings have no bearing on qualification or selection into the Breeders’ Cup Classic.

The 2023 Longines Breeders’ Cup Classic, which will be run at 1 1/4 miles on the main track at Santa Anita, is limited to 14 starters. The race will be broadcast live on NBC and Peacock.