(Letruska / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

Earlier today, “The Pressbox” updated its’ rankings for all the Breeders’ Cup Championship events and races to be held at the Del Mar Turf Club on Friday, Nov. 5 and Saturday, Nov. 6.

You can access the link at the top of our “Home Page,” and you can read about all our top picks, to date. For your convenience, we have added information on each horse’s sire; trainer; regular jockey and last race. We also provide “comments” and commentary to go along with all.

Take a read.

Take a chance to agree.

Take a whack at disagreeing.

That’s the fun of handicapping and ranking.

That’s what makes pari-mutuel wagering on horses fun, entertaining, and possibly profitable.

As we approach the second biggest day on Thoroughbred racing’s annual calendar (nothing compares to Kentucky Derby week, after all; nothing), we will be updating and adding information on all the top contenders. And, we will begin to handicap the races — looking to unearth some surprising long shots; looking to find the best value and betting options; looking to locate the “singles” and the ones that seemingly cannot find a way to lose; looking to offer you tidbits of information and insights to our own betting strategies as the big days approach.

After this weekend’s flurry of Graded Stakes events and some of the best and final preps for the upcoming Breeders’ Cup, it appears that one horse has already stamped herself as a legit heavy favorite and a possible “single” in some of our horizontal plays and bets (the Pick 3s, Pick 4s, Pick 5s and Pick 6s.)

On Sunday, the grand Letruska ran off to another impressive victory in the G1 Spinster Stakes at Keeneland. It was another example of how great this mare has become, and how easily she dispatches of top-caliber and highly-ranked competition.

On Sunday, the great Letruska truly had no real threat, as she bolted to the lead early on a speed-favoring track and then throttled down her speed into cruise control. She didn’t need any help. But the track bias surely gave her some. Yet, in the end, it didn’t matter. Latruska was the best. By many and plenty. Again.

And, on Sunday, the gracious Letruska was kind enough to let up before the wire and just jet streamed into coasting toward the wire. Still, she was an easy winner. Easy. Winner.

Over the last eight starts — all Graded Stakes — Letruska has won 7 times.

Over the last five starts — four Grade 1 events and a Grade 2 — Letruska has won every time.

Over the last five starts, Letruska has defeated the likes of Champions Monomoy Girl, Swiss Skydiver, and world class fillies and mares Bonny South, Shedaresthedevil, Antoinette, Royal Flag, Dunbar Road, and any and all others.

The only loss that shows on her record of 6 wins in 7 starts this year came back back in March in the G2 Azeri Stakes when Kentucky Oaks winner Shedaresthedevil out-dueled her at Oaklawn Park by a stinking nose hair.

When the Breeders’ Cup rolls around to that first weekend in November and we all make our way or turn our eyes and attentions to Del Mar, Letruska figures to be one of the horses that simply has the best speed figures of any that will compete.

She has speed.

She has endurance.

She has grit and grind.

She has brilliance and spine.

Seemingly, she has it all.

And, seemingly, she is ready to take it all.


(Shedaresthedevil / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

As this point in time, the only horse that figures to have a shot at her will be a former nemeses — Shedaresthedevil.

This 4YO daughter of Daredevil will go into the Breeders’ Cup Distaff and matchup with Letruska on a two-race win streak of her own, and with 4 wins in the last 5 outings.

In her own brilliant career, Shedaresthedevil has a 9-2-4 record in 16 career starts. She has earned over $2.2 million.

And, she has been brilliant of late, including a win in the G1 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes at Del Mar — the home of this year’s Breeders’ Cup.

Maybe there is a chance for an upset, after all, if these two head strong and leg sturdy females throw it down from the beginning to the very end.



What if the connections of Letruska decide to take a swing at the boys in the Breeders’ Cup Classic?

Maybe there is a chance for an upset in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff, after all, if this great gal tries to join Zenyatta in this grand pursuit?


Only time will tell us.

Only a race showdown can decide for us.

But, for now, and after her cake-walk win in the G1 Spinster, it certainly appears that Letruska is poised to become one of the “Best Bets” for this year’s Breeders’ Cup.

For now, Letruska is set to become one of the most overwhelming favorites.