Monmouth Cup & Molly Pitcher Stakes Odds

Away from the Haskell hullabaloo, two very classy older horses take to the stage on the main track at Monmouth Park on Saturday, with G1 winner Proxy an intensely heavy chalk on a retrieval mission against moderate opposition in the G3 Monmouth Cup, and Search Results a warm favourite to repeat last year’s success in the G3 Molly Pitcher, where her rivals include recent wide-margin allowance winner Loved.

Breeders Cup Odds

Molly Pitcher Stakes

G3, $500,000, 1m 1/16 dirt, 3yo+ females, 4.38pm ET

The Molly Pitcher may be ‘only’ a G3 contest but it offers a purse on a level with many G1 races, and the main event for distaffers on Monmouth Park’s Saturday schedule has drawn a strong field that includes last year’s winner returning for a repeat bid.

She has been a star of the division ever since finishing runner-up in the 2021 G1 Kentucky Oaks, and Search Results (8-5) was dominant in the 2022 version of this race, drawing right off to score by three lengths in a time just half a second outside the track record. It has been G1s all the way for her since then, and although she hasn’t got her head in front, the level of form she showed when runner-up in the 2023 Ogden Phipps over a mile-sixteenth at Belmont Park, run down late and beaten a half-length by the top-class Clairiere, gives her a major class edge today.

Her barnmate Distinctlypossible (9-2) is nowhere near that level but is climbing the ladder, and made her stakes breakthrough with a pace-stalking score here over a mile in May, pouncing in the stretch and drawing off for a comfortable success with Shotgun Hottie (6-1) six and three-quarter lengths back in third. She’s probably capable of more and is a worthy second-string.

Shotgun Hottie is zero-for-four at Graded level, but boosted that form next time when rolling her rivals flat in a stakes over course and distance, romping by five and a half lengths and wrapped up late. She’s certainly worth another crack up in grade.

The Godolphin filly Loved (5-1) is moving up fast and took her streak to three when smashing an Ellis Park mile allowance to bits last month, cruising by 12 lengths over admittedly moderate opposition. She thrives when going forward and could be the speed today, and shouldn’t be underestimated despite this being her stakes debut.

First To Act (6-1) was progressing well last fall but has been off the track since early November and this is a tough spot to bid for a first stakes victory off a long layoff, so a better alternative might be the ex-Chilean Le Da Vida (5-1). She has been busy this year and comes off arguably a career-best when strolling home in a mile-eighth stakes at Thistledown last month, three and a quarter lengths clear with Misty Veil (12-1) another four and a half lengths back in fourth.

On her previous start Le Da Vida was a half-length behind Misty Veil when they ran two-three in a stakes at Pimlico over a mile-eighth, with Falconet (10-1) five lengths further back in fourth, but she’s heading in the right direction and Misty Veil, who is zero-for-five in stakes, is going the other way.

Molly Pitcher Stakes Odds & Betting Pick

HorseJockeyHorse Racing Odds by Jazzsports
Misty VeilJavier Castellano+1200
FalconetJairo Rendon+1000
DistinctlypossibleLuis Saez+450
Search ResultsJoel Rosario+160
Le Da Vida (CHI)Vincent Cheminaud+500
LovedTyler Gaffalione+500
First to ActJohn R. Velazquez+600
Shotgun HottiePaco Lopez+600

If class means anything it’s hard to oppose SEARCH RESULTS, a solid G1 mare in a G3 race who has excellent prospects of repeating last year’s victory.

Monmouth Cup

G3, $400,000, 1m 1f dirt, 3yo+, 3.29pm ET

Class relief is one of the most potent weapons in a bettor’s armoury and the Monmouth Cup showcases a perfect example of the genre, although no-one will get rich at the likely odds.

This is the easiest task Proxy (3-5) has been set for more than a year, the five-year-old usually at home at G1 level, and it represents the perfect opportunity to bounce back after throwing in a clunker last time when last of eight in the 2023 G1 Stephen Foster at Ellis Park, never running a yard.

That wasn’t like him. The time before that he had outfought local hero Last Samurai to take the mile-eighth 2023 G2 Oaklawn at Oaklawn Park by a head, and that followed on the heels of a fine effort to be runner-up in the 2023 G1 ‘Big Cap’ at Santa Anita, beaten a neck when finishing off his race with a flourish. Add his success in the mile-eighth 2022 G1 Clark at Churchill Downs to the list, and he stands head and shoulders over the opposition today.

This should be easy pickings – although there are no certainties in this game – for it’s hard to see which of his six rivals can give him a race.

The trick might be to find one for the exacta, and Calibrate (7-2) is a contender on the basis of his runner-up effort in the 2023 G2 Brooklyn at Belmont Park last month, with a weary Forewarned (12-1) beaten a city block into sixth, although that was over a mile and a half and the cutback isn’t necessarily what he’s looking for.

Antigravity (6-1) was the 26-1 rank outsider in this race 12 months ago and outran his odds to an extent when fourth, beaten four and a half lengths. On his only other start at Graded level he was recorded as third in the 2021 G1 Haskell, but don’t let that fool you as the winner was disqualified to last place and one horse came down in the stretch – but he nevertheless goes well here and could make a bid for the board.

Another with a little local prowess is Whelen Springs (8-1), who snapped a six-race losing streak when beating Antigravity by a half-length in a mile allowance here last month, and could also prove a friend to exotics players.

It’s hard to have much faith in Fowler Blue (15-1), who won for the first time in nine starts and 18 months when taking an off-the-turf allowance over a mile and three-eighths at Ellis Park, and there’s even less in Higher Quality (30-1), who makes his stakes debut here after some success in claimers.

Monmouth Cup Odds & Betting Prediction

HorseJockeyHorse Racing Odds by Jazzsports
AntigravityNik Juarez+600
ForewarnedDexter Haddock+1200
CalibrateRuben Silvera+350
Higher QualityRomero Ramsay Maragh+3000
Fowler BlueDeclan Cannon+1500
ProxyJoel Rosario-167
Whelen SpringsJose C. Ferrer+800

This should be a walk in the park for the G1 runner PROXY, a perfect chance to pick up a decent purse with a mile-wide class edge over the opposition.

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

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