2018 Breeders' Futurity Contenders & Odds at Keeneland

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Keeneland Press Release | OTB Writer

KEENELAND - Red Oak Stable and Madaket Stables' Hopeful (G1) winner Mind Control got his first feel of Keeneland's racing surface Wednesday morning after the renovation break with a jog over the main track.

Mind Control arrived at Keeneland Tuesday for a run in Saturday's 1 1/16-mile, $500,000 Claiborne Breeders' Futurity (G1), a "Win and You're In" race for the $2 million Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) to be run Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs.

2018 Breeders' Futurity Odds & Entries

Race 9 on Keeneland's Saturday card with a Post Time of 5:14 PM

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Signalman 15-1 Brian Hernandez, Jr.
121 Lbs
Kenneth McPeek
2 Sombeyay 5-1 Luis Saez
121 Lbs
Todd Pletcher
3 Fluminense 10-1 Ricardo Santana, Jr.
121 Lbs
Steven Asmussen
4 Unionizer 10-1 Florent Geroux
121 Lbs
William Mott
5 Dream Maker 5-1 Julien Leparoux
121 Lbs
Mark Casse
6 Everfast 12-1 Jack Gilligan
121 Lbs
Dale Romans
7 Knicks Go 30-1 Albin Jimenez
121 Lbs
Ben Colebrook
8 Tobacco Road 12-1 Corey Lanerie
121 Lbs
Steven Asmussen
9 Moonster 10-1 Tyler Gaffalione
121 Lbs
Dale Romans
10 Mr. Ankeny 12-1 Robby Albarado
121 Lbs
Dale Romans
11 Borracho 20-1 James Graham
121 Lbs
George Arnold, II
12 Derby Date 20-1 Gabriel Saez
121 Lbs
D. Lukas
13 Mind Control 7-2 John Velazquez
121 Lbs
Gregory Sacco
14 Standard Deviation 10-1 Javier Castellano
121 Lbs
Chad Brown

Rick Sacco, brother of trainer Greg Sacco, is overseeing the colt's preparation here.

"His son is a high school quarterback and has a game Friday night in New Jersey, so he will be flying in Saturday morning," Rick Sacco said about his brother.

Mind Control began his career with a runner-up finish at Delaware Park going 5½ furlongs before breaking his maiden at Monmouth Park at 6 furlongs. Then came his victory in the 7-furlong Hopeful at Saratoga.

"He is a very smart horse, and you need that for a horse going to a fourth track in as many starts," Sacco said. "We came here (instead of this weekend's Grade 1 Champagne at Belmont Park) because we wanted to answer the two-turn question now.

"The Champagne is a one-turn mile with the long run down the backstretch. The timing is right now to try two turns. His daddy (Stay Thirsty) won the Travers (G1) and there is plenty of two-turn pedigree there."

Mind Control, who worked a bullet five-eighths in :59.80 at Monmouth on Saturday, will be ridden by John Velazquez. He had the mount for the first time in the Hopeful.

Sacco is hoping for a better outcome Saturday than he had here in 2009 when the stable's Piscitelli finished fifth in the Breeders' Futurity.

"I was in the Grandstand, and he was dead last in a field of 14 when he passed me the first time," Sacco said. "He wound up finishing fifth. Then he went to the Breeders' Cup (at Santa Anita) and finished fourth (in the Juvenile). That was one reason we came here because the tracks (Keeneland and Santa Anita at the time) had the all-weather surfaces."

Win or lose Saturday, Sacco said the plan is to return to Monmouth Park the next day. Should a Breeders' Cup run be in the cards, Sacco said Mind Control would ship to Louisville 10 days before the World Championships and have one work over the track.

Breeders' Futurity History

The Breeders' Futurity (G1) was inaugurated in 1910 and is held at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Kentucky; the host course since 1938. The race takes place in early October and is open to two-year-olds contested at a distance of 1 1�,,16 miles with a purse of $500,000.

The race was upgraded to Grade II status in 1976 and became a Grade I event in 2004. It has been run at various distances but has remained at 1 1�,,16 miles since 1981.

The Breeders' Futurity is a `Road to the Kentucky Derby' prep race and the winner is awarded 10 points towards qualifying for the Derby and the top four finishers receive a points spread of 10-4-2-1.

Whirlaway won the 1940 Breeders' Futurity on his way towards a Champion two-year-old season. He parlayed that into a Kentucky Derby victory and Triple Crown glory in 1941.

In the Breeders' Futurity debut at Keeneland in 1938, Johnstown prevailed by a nose in a special stretch duel with Allegro. The next year Johnstown won the Kentucky Derby by a record 8 lengths and also went on to capture the Belmont Stakes. Swale is the third horse to win both the Breeders' Futurity and Kentucky Derby.

Polar Expedition set the race record time of 1:42.20 in 1993. Trainer D. Wayne Lukas is the leading trainer with six wins from 1991-2004. Jockey Brumfield won the race a record five times from 1969-1979.

Since 2007, the starting field of the race has averaged 12.2 juveniles. The 2018 Breeders' Futurity was the 105th running, and 17 different jockeys have won the race in the last 20 years.

The biggest $2 win payout was in 2005 when Dawn of War went wire-to-wire to pull the major upset at 38-1 odds and returned $74.20.

The Breeders' Futurity is also a "Win and You're In" Breeders' Cup Challenge race and the winner earns an automatic entry and fees paid berth to the $2 million Breeders' Cup Juvenile.

Four horses have won both the Breeders' Futurity and the Breeders' Cup Juvenile: Classic Empire (2016), Favorite Trick (1997), Boston Harbor (1996) and Tasso (1985). All four were named Champion Two-year-old that year. Hall of Fame horses Round Table and Devil Diver also won the Breeders' Futurity.

Other notable Futurity runners include 3rd place finisher Street Sense (2006) who went on to win the Breeders' Cup Juvenile and 2nd place finisher Answer Lively (1998), who won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile.

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