Breeders’ Cup Betting


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The Breeders’ Cup World Championship is thoroughbred racing’s annual showpiece event for horses, trainers and breeders as well as those looking to bet, staged every year on the first weekend in November.

2019 sees Santa Anita Park host the meet for the tenth time with two fantastic days of betting action bringing together top juveniles, sophomore’s and older horses in order for the best of them to be crowned as the champion of champions for this year, all with betting right at the forefront.

Breeders’ Cup bets are now among the most popular in the world for those wagering on sports, but having a bet successfully means being informed so read on for all the crucial info you’ll need as the big weekend gets closer.


Breeders’ Cup Event Information

Date: Friday November 1 & Saturday November 2, 2019
Where: Santa Anita Park, Arcadia, California
Post Times: Announced October 23


Where to Get Breeders’ Cup Tickets

TVG is privileged to be the official betting partner of the Breeders’ Cup, but if you want to head out to Santa Anita and capture the atmosphere for yourself then grab your Breeders Cup tickets now so as not to miss out!


Breeders’ Cup Betting Strategies

Across the first two days of November 2019 we will witness the 36th Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park, a venue now synonymous with Breeders Cup betting.

With fourteen championship races to bet on, taking place across Friday and Saturday from 5 furlongs up to a mile-and-a-half, fans of the sport are truly spoiled on this occasion.  Those on and off track will be betting the best of the US as well as some strong overseas contenders as breeders, owners, trainers and jockeys vie to be no.1.

While watching these majestic animals is good enough, Breeders’ Cup betting is where it’s really at and so that is what we concentrate on.  Here are the basics you need to know before we head into this year’s fantastic meet:


Bet Types

Betting the various Breeders Cup races is simple and is one of the best ways to make yourself feel like you are taking part in the action, no matter how far from California you may be.

Several bet types will be available to choose from at the meet, from the basic to the exotic.  Here’s an explanation of what they all mean:

Basic Bets

Win To be successful in this bet, your nominated horse must win outright.
Place To win this time, your horse must finish in the first 2 past the wire.
Show This time, your horse must finish in the first 3 to win the bet.

Single-Race Exotic Bets

Exacta Predict which horses will finish 1st and 2nd in the correct order.
Quinella ‘Boxing’ your Exacta – betting the first two finishers in either order.
Trifecta Predict the 1st, 2nd and 3rd horses in the correct order.
Superfecta Predict the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th horses in the correct order.

Multi-Race Exotic Bets

Daily Double Predict the winners of two consecutive races to win.
Pick 3 Predict the winners of three consecutive races.
Pick 4 Predict the winners of four consecutive races.
Pick 5 Predict the winners of five consecutive races.
Pick 6 Predict the winners of six consecutive races.

What payoffs you can expect from your Breeders Cup betting will depend upon how much money is in the pari-mutuel purse, and also on the degree of difficulty.  In terms of the basic bets, the highest payouts are on win bets as they are the hardest to get right, followed by place bets then betting show wagers.

The exotic bets pay more generally speaking, but remember whenever you ‘box’ your bet it means you pay double the amount to place the wager, but now your chosen horses can finish 1st or 2nd in any order for you to win and still with a reasonable payout.


Placing Your Bets

It goes without saying that you can’t beat being at the track and collecting your Breeders’ Cup betting winnings right from the teller, but for the majority of us it’s simply not feasible to be at Santa Anita and so betting online is the way to go.

TVG is the official wagering partner of the Breeders’ Cup and takes you right to the heart of the action.  You can choose your Breeders Cup bets from the comfort of your own home and watch every race right there too.


Choosing Your Breeders’ Cup Bets

Breeders’ Cup bets are for everyone, you don’t have to be a professional handicapper, but reading the form carefully, checking out workout times and being informed on what conditions each animal prefers are all good practice when betting.

To cut out the middle man however, simply check in here at TVG where we will have lots of info as we approach post time in November.

In 2018 at Churchill Downs the likes of Enable and Newspaperofrecord were winning favorites, while horses such as Stormy Liberal and Shamrock Rose were more surprising and showed there’s a chance for everyone to be successful with their Breeders Cup bets.

Take a look at our Breeders Cup Contenders page as time moves on to see who is in contention for a spot in the winner’s circle at Santa Anita during this year’s edition of the Breeders’ Cup.


Racing’s World Championships

Despite the original premise of the Breeders’ Cup being to bring North America’s best thoroughbreds together and the end of the year, this meet has grown out of all recognition to become a huge international affair with some of the best that Europe has to offer making their way over to compete.

These championships are timed sweetly to coincide with the end of the majority of the European season, so for those horses still exhibiting enough enthusiasm after a long campaign it is an ideal chance to race in different conditions and perhaps to supplement their income, as well as of course enhancing their reputations before going off to the breeding sheds.

Given their penchant for turf and longer distances, horses bred and trained in Europe have done particularly well in the Mile, Turf and Filly & Mare Turf races over the years and it goes without saying that these horses are heavily wagered by overseas watchers in the betting markets.


The 2019 Breeders’ Cup Schedule

(Available on TVG’s Mobile APP)

Future Stars Friday, November 1


Betting is naturally a little quieter on the first day, but these horses are the champions of the future and that makes these races very important indeed.

Race Purse Conditions
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint $1,000,000 2yo, 5 furlongs, turf
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf $1,000,000 2yo fillies, 1 mile, turf
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies $2,000,000 2yo fillies, 1 1/16 miles
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf $1,000,000 2yo, 1 mile, turf
Breeders’ Cup TVG Juvenile $2,000,000 2yo, 1 1/16 miles


Saturday, November 2


Breeders and owners are particularly keen to land the Classic of course, and it’s this race in which betting reaches a crescendo.

Race Purse Conditions
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf $1,000,000 3yo+ fillies, 7 furlongs
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint $1,000,000 3yo+, 5 furlongs, turf
Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile $1,000,000 3yo+, 1 mile
Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf $2,000,000 3yo+ fillies & mares, 1¼ miles, turf
Breeders’ Cup Sprint $2,000,000 3yo+, 6 furlongs
Breeders’ Cup TVG Mile $2,000,000 3yo+, 1 mile, turf
Breeders’ Cup Distaff $2,000,000 3yo+ fillies & mares, 1 1/8 miles
Breeders’ Cup Turf $4,000,000 3yo+, 1½ miles, turf
Breeders’ Cup Classic $6,000,000 3yo+, 1¼ miles



How Do Horses Qualify for These Races?

Qualifying is one thing, but an even greater consideration for trainers and those placing bets is knowing what each horse likes as these championships have races run on both dirt and turf, over distances varying from 5 furlongs right up to a mile-and-a-half.

A maximum of 14 starters are allowed in the gate, sometimes even twelve depending on any track safety limitations, so for some popular races the qualification process has to be pretty tight.  Horses are nominated for the Breeders’ Cup by their owners and trainers and will be eligible for Breeders’ Cup Championship races, paying entry fees each time to take part.

From that point there is a simple points-based system in place for qualification with win, place and show horses earning 10, 6 and 4 points respectively in relevant Grade 1 stakes races.  6, 4 and 2 points are awarded in Grade 2’s and 4, 2 and 1 in Grade 3’s.  There are of course a number of “win and you’re in” races too, meaning scoring in a specified race throughout the year guarantees a spot in the final field for the relevant Breeders’ Cup race in November.

Should any races be oversubscribed, a panel of racing experts will be called upon to decide which horses should take part based on their various merits.


History of the Breeders’ Cup

The Breeders’ Cup has been on the international racing scene since 1984, firstly existing as a single race day before becoming the two-day betting bonanza we are now so familiar with.

Over the years these championships have evolved to be regarded as the pinnacle of horse racing excellence, much like Royal Ascot over in England, with horses arriving from Europe and beyond to take part.

Despite taking place within a sport noted for tradition, the Championships are a great example of how things can evolve as new initiatives and new races have been added to the calendar over the years, allowing the Breeders’ Cup to be the international success it is today.


The Early Years

Initially started as the year-ending thoroughbred championships for North America, the Breeders’ Cup very quickly became known more as a fully-fledged international meet with horses from England, Ireland and France especially targeted at the various Grade 1 races on offer.

The idea of a ‘Breeders Cup’ first came about in 1982 when top owner John R. Gaines proposed it at the Kentucky Derby Festival awards luncheon and let’s be honest – we’re all grateful that he did!

While some people within the sport in the early days could not envisage the benefits of a championships such as this, neither from a horsemen or betting viewpoint, others caught on quickly and so by 1984 we were ready to go with Hollywood Park hosting the very first Breeders’ Cup.


The Breeders’ Cup Today

First there were seven championship races, then eight, then a second day was added in 2007 and now we are treated to no less than FOURTEEN Graded events worth a combined $30million in prize money.

Santa Anita hosts the meet for the tenth time in 2019, breaking the record it previously held jointly with Churchill Downs and with runners such as McKinzie, Maximum Security and Game Winner set to show up for the Classic, Breeders’ Cup betting will never have been so competitive.


Breeders’ Cup Venues

In the history of the Breeders’ Cup between 1984 and 2018, just 12 individual race tracks have been used for the championships.  This is because, while they are free to move around every year, the championships need a venue with a big enough capacity, good facilities and a quality turf track to ensure the event is satisfactory for all.

With Breeders’ Cup betting at the forefront of many attendees’ minds, there have to be enough tellers available to take the millions of dollars bet at each meet.  Here are the host venues to date:

Race Track Location Years Visited Breeders Cup Betting
Churchill Downs Louisville, Kentucky 2018, 2011, 2010, 2006, 2000, 1998, 1994, 1991, 1988 Over 80,000 people attended and placed bets at the home of the Derby in 1998
Santa Anita Arcadia, California 2016, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2009, 2008, 2003, 1993, 1986 Santa Anita breaks the record in 2019, hosting for the 10th time and nowhere else have more Breeders Cup bets been placed
Belmont Park Elmont, New York 2005, 2001, 1995, 1990 In ’05, more than 54,000 people attended and contributed to what was then Belmont’s largest ever on-track handle of $14.6m
Gulfstream Park Hallandale Beach, Florida 1999, 1992, 1989 This is where the championships reached a new level, the handle growing to $57.5m in 1989
Hollywood Park Inglewood, California 1997, 1987, 1984 Where it all began.  Back in ‘84 the total handle was $19.4m
Del Mar Del Mar, California 2017
Keeneland Lexington, Kentucky 2015
Monmouth Park Oceanport, New Jersey 2007
Lone Star Park Grand Prairie, Texas 2004
Arlington Park Arlington Heights, Illinois 2002
Woodbine Etobicoke, Ontario 1996
Aqueduct New York, New York 1985

Each venue has its own charm of course and each offers something different for those looking to place Breeders Cup bets.  Wherever the championships end up in future, you can guarantee betting will be competitive!


Keep it TVG for Your 2019 Breeders’ Cup Betting

Don’t forget – you can bet the 2019 Championships from Santa Anita right here at TVG, so be certain to check back with us regularly for all the latest information on Breeders Cup odds and Breeders Cup Contenders as well as to receive Breeders’ Cup betting advice from our team of experts.