Breeders’ Cup Classic Contenders: PROXY 🏇

The field is almost set for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita Park on Saturday (Nov. 4). The 1¼-mile Classic is the centerpiece of racing’s two-day, 14-race, $31 million championships. In the days leading up to the race, will publish snapshots of the entries. Updates with odds and post positions will be published following the draw on Monday, Oct. 30.

Breeder’s Cup Contenders: PROXY

He’s earned over $2.2 million, finished first or second 13 times in 19 starts over three years, and he’s already shown he can run quite well at Santa Anita.

Proxy, though, may be overlooked when it comes to picking your Classic winner with so many 3-year-olds getting so much national exposure.

But bettor beware: Proxy is one tough customer. The 5-year-old son of Tapit won the Oaklawn Handicap (G2) in April with a well-timed closing run led from the start and won the Monmouth Cup (G3) in July. Both races were at 1 1/8 miles.

But the race that convinced trainer Michael Stidham to go in the 1 ¼-mile Classic was Proxy’s nose loss to Bright Future in the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) at Saratoga on Sept. 2.

“He certainly stamped himself in that top group to go to the Breeders’ Cup,” Stidham said after the JCGC.

Interestingly, in his last two off-the-board finishes, eighth in the Stephen Foster (G1) in July and fifth in the Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) in January, he broke from the rail. He broke from the rail in the JCGC, too.

“The 1 hole has been a huge detriment to us all year long,” Stidham said. “If you look at his only bad races, they were both from the 1 hole in the Pegasus and the Stephen Foster. When I saw we drew the 1 hole again here, it was very depressing, but he did overcome a lot of it and almost won in spite of it.”

In his two 1 ¼-mile races this year, he was second by a nose in the JCGC and second by a neck to Stilleto Boy in the Santa Anita Handicap (G1).

“The mile-and-a-quarter definitely helps him,” Stidham said. “He just came up short both times. It’s right in his wheelhouse.”

Breeders’ Cup Classic Odds and Post Positions

Betting advice: If he doesn’t draw the rail, Proxy seems capable of a career-defining victory. Keep this guy in your wagering plans.

Post position: 13

Odds: 12-1

Jockey: Joel Rosario

Trainer: Michael Stidham

Owner: Godolphin (Dubai Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum)

Biggest Win: Oaklawn Handicap (G2), Oaklawn Park, April 22

Age: 5

Career record: 19-6-7-2

Career earnings: $2,224,970

Top Equibase speed figure: 113

Pedigree: Tapit-Panty Raid, by Include

Color: Bay

Running style: Stalker/Front-runner

Notes: Jockey Joel Rosario is a two-time Classic winner – Accelerate in 2018 and Knicks Go in 2021 … Rosario has won 15 Breeders’ Cup races … Proxy was purchased for $240,000 at the Ocala Breeders Spring Sale of 2-year-olds … Godolphin has sent out 16 Breeders’ Cup winners but is looking for its first Classic winner.

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