Turf Classic fair odds: Chad Brown colt is Derby day best bet

Turf Classic fair odds: Chad Brown colt is Derby day best bet

The Grade 1 Turf Classic is one of the most fun races on the American turf racing calendar because with its 1 1/8-mile distance it appeals to future Breeders’ Cup Turf and Mile hopefuls.

Indeed, the traditional race before the Kentucky Derby has featured horses of the year in Mile winner Wise Dan and Turf winner Bricks and Mortar. This year’s edition continues that tradition of excellence with no less than half of this field seeming capable of going on to a championship season.

Similar to my Kentucky Oaks fair odds, my thought on the Turf Classic is there are at least three very strong contenders. But I have such a clear opinion on one of those three being best that I know he will be the right price to play.

I’m Very Busy is 4-1 on Mike Battaglia’s morning line, and I think that is correct based on Naval Power as the likely favorite and Integration always taking money.

I tried to beat I’m Very Busy at odds-on in the Muniz Memorial presented by Horse Racing Nation (G2) in March at Fair Grounds and looked extremely foolish doing so. He was so much the best that he made 1-5 look like value in hindsight.

I see no reason that he would regress here on six weeks rest, and the setup appears similar. If anything, I think it’s more likely he improves, and he wins this race 100 percent of the time if he manages to run better.

Even if he does not, though, he’s as good as Naval Power at his best, and you’re going to get a better price. Talent-wise, Integration intrigues me more than Naval Power. But the rail going nine furlongs on turf at Churchill is not ideal, so I downgraded him as third choice.

I’m really excited only by I’m Very Busy here. He’s a single for me in all multi-race bets. And from a vertical standpoint, I might look at what the big prices are in exactas that don’t involve the inside and outside horses, including Integration and Naval Power.

Related Articles