Lazy Bettor Guides False-Favorite Report, Friday, November 3, 2023

Breeders Cup here we come! We see false favs in the BC Juvenile, Juvenile Turf and (on Saturday) the Classic. For subscribers betting exotics across days, consider using the All button in the Classic. We’ll have a lot to say about that race in Saturday’s edition, but for now we’ll just note that we don’t believe the early speed types (including the favored Arabian Knight) will hold up.


RACE 1. Maiden Claimer $16,000. 5 Furlongs. All Weather.

False Favorite: #9 Pirate Radio (5-2).

Reason: Gelded since he was last raced on September 1, this Mark Casse runner apparently returns with a whole different skill set. Casse seemed convinced this runner would be best going two turns on grass. Now the Pirate is a polytrack sprinter as he plunges several rungs down the claiming ladder. Maybe the real story here is that Casse doesn’t think this guy can hold all his remaining parts together for a mile.


#4 First Coast Storm (6-1). He ran surprisingly poorly when going route to sprint last time. In his two races prior to that, both at the $35,000 level, he showed good early speed. We’re willing to draw a line through his most recent race as he drops one more level and gets the services of Paco Lopez.

#8 Mauricio (8-1). While his rivals keep cementing their reputations as mediocre competitors, this second-time starter shows potential. He engaged in a three-way pace duel in his debut. That experience and a one-level class drop set him up well for an improved effort.

Top Relevant BRIS Speed Figs

  • Not applicable because of multiple debut and lightly raced horses.


RACE 8. Grade 1 BC Juvenile. 1 Mile and 1/16th. Dirt.

False Favorite: #6 Locked (7-2).

Reason: He broke last in his debut and next to last when winning a stakes race at Keeneland last time out. As of yet, he hasn’t shown the quick-break ability and early turn of foot that most BC Juvenile (and Kentucky Derby) winners display. In his Breeders Futurity win at Keeneland, he barely closed out The Wine Steward, a NY-bred runner trying two turns for the first time. The competition is much stiffer here, so it seems unlikely he can pass all the rivals that have better early speed and equal or superior pedigrees and accomplishments.


#2 Prince of Monaco (4-1). This $950,000 Baffert runner stalked a lightning-fast pace in two consecutive sprint stakes wins. In his Grade 3 Best Pal victory, he willingly sat 5 lengths behind a :21.3 opening quarter mile. In that race he blew past stablemate Muth, who returned to win the Grade 1 American Pharoah. The Prince then showed his versatility when winning the Del Mar Futurity by pressing a peppy pace of :22.0 and extending his lead to the wire.

He is 3 for 3 lifetime and stretches out for a trainer who wins 31% with horses trying a route for the first time. His 6-furlong work in 1:12.0 from the gate suggests fitness and readiness for a top two-turn effort.

#10 Muth (4-1). His only loss occurred when he was caught up in a wicked pace duel in his second lifetime start. As evidenced by Muth’s perfect stalking trip in the Grade 1 American Pharoah at 8.5 furlongs, Bob Baffert clearly fixed this runner’s tendency to empty the tank early. In that race he sat just off of a lively pace of 1:10.1, took over the lead at the top of the stretch and drew away powerfully in fast time.

We have seen in Muth’s short career so far a superb ability to break on or near the top, exceptional early speed, a willingness to stalk and ration that speed over a distance and any number of other talents that the greatest race horses display. Despite a less than ideal post, we see Muth as the horse to beat.

Top Relevant BRIS Speed Figs

  • #2 Prince of Monaco (4-1), 102 (sprint)
  • #4 Timberlake (4-1), 102 (sloppy/sealed)
  • #10 Muth (4-1), 100

RACE 9. Grade 1 BC Juvenile Turf. 1 Mile. Turf (Analysis for turf only)

False Favorite: #2 River Tiber (3-1).

Reason: He certainly competed well against the best juvenile turf runners in Europe. However, he has never raced around two turns, nor has he raced on firm turf. Those factors might not qualify him as “false,” but they make him vulnerable against rivals who’ve done both of those things successfully in stakes company.


#3 Tok Tok (20-1). He’d likely be undefeated if not for traffic trouble in the Grade 2 Bourbon at Keeneland. This well-bred colt with a devastating late kick gets blinkers to help with his upward progression.

#6 Stay Hot (20-1). His MSW turf win on October 7 at Santa Anita clocked in faster than the winning time for the Grade 3 Zuma Beach Stakes on October 8. That was his first try on turf and around two turns. Expect further improvement. His bullet work on October 27 says he’s ready.

Top Relevant BRIS Speed Figs

  • Not applicable because of multiple Euro shippers