Bowling Green Stakes Odds & Betting Prediction

An intriguing transatlantic tussle is on the cards in the G2 Bowling Green Stakes, the main attraction at Saratoga on Sunday, as 2022 Breeders’ Cup Turf winner Rebel’s Romance jets in from Britain to take on a home defence that includes the classy but frustrating Soldier Rising and the upwardly mobile Never Explain.

Bowling Green Stakes

G2, $250,000, 1m 3f turf, 4yo+, 5.49pm ET

The quality remains relentlessly high at Saratoga this weekend as three 2022 Breeders’ Cup winners take to the track, Saturday’s stars Elite Power and Forte being followed on Sunday by Rebel’s Romance (8-5), who ships from Britain for the Bowling Green.

Rebel’s Romance was a revelation last year, rattling up a five-streak over a mile and a half that included two G1s in Germany and the 2022 G1 Breeders’ Cup Turf. He produced a powerful stretch run at Keeneland to win going away by two and a quarter lengths, with the old-timer Channel Maker (20-1) fading quickly in the final furlong to finish seventh.

If Rebel’s Romance can do that again he will hose this field, but it is not so straightforward – the cutback is a slight negative, he never raised a gallop when seventh in the 2023 G1 Sheema Classic at Meydan, and his barn is having a moderate campaign by its usual sky-high standards. At these odds he could be an underlay.

The big local hope is Soldier Rising (4-1), who has still never won a stakes but posted a career-best last time in the 2023 G1 Manhattan at Belmont Park over ten furlongs. His usual late rally carried him into the place spot, with stakes debutant Strong Quality (10-1) two and a half lengths back in fifth, longshot Highest Honors (8-1) another two and three-quarter lengths behind in sixth, and Rockemperor (12-1), who won a weak edition of the Bowling Green last year but has not won since, ninth of ten.

At some point it will click for Soldier Rising but he cannot be relied on, although he has hit the board on all three starts at this track and this is a good opportunity. His barnmate Tawny Port (20-1) has his first start for Christophe Clement, but has shown very little since grabbing the show in the 2022 G2 Jim Dandy here over a mile-eighth and makes his debut on the lawn today.

Never Explain (6-1) has made major improvement of late, and followed his stakes breakthrough in the mile-eighth 2023 G3 Dinner Party at Pimlico with a strong effort to be runner-up in the 2023 G3 Monmouth over a mile-eighth in New Jersey. The winner that day was G1-placed next time, but the question over Never Explain is the distance – he has never gone this long before.

Conversely, The Grey Wizard (8-1) – who has never won a stakes – will not be suited by the cutback or by the class hike, while Verstappen (15-1) has failed to live up to the promise of his narrow upset victory in the 2023 G2 Elkhorn at Keeneland.

2023 Bowling Green Stakes Odds

There are doubts over Rebel’s Romance so this could be the big day for SOLDIER RISING, G1-placed on his last two starts and well suited by this track.

HorseJockeyHorse Racing Odds by Jazzsports
Highest HonorsIrad Ortiz, Jr.+800
Rockemperor (IRE)Flavien Prat+1200
Never ExplainLuis Saez+600
VerstappenDeclan Cannon+1500
Soldier Rising (GB)Jose L. Ortiz+400
Strong QualityFlorent Geroux+1000
The Grey Wizard (IRE)John R. Velazquez+800
Channel MakerManuel Franco+2000
Rebel’s Romance (IRE)Richard Mullen+160
Tawny PortJoel Rosario+2000
DauntJavier Castellano+3000

Come Back for the latest 2023 Breeders’ Cup Odds. Check out the Breeders Cup Win and you’re in & Breeders Cup World Championships Races

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