Breeders Cup Distaff | Breeders Cup

Breeders' Cup Distaff Betting Tips

The Breeders' Cup Distaff (Grade 1) has produced three of the seven highest-priced winners in Breeders' Cup history to date. Keeping that in mind, this $2 million race for fillies and mares has actually been among the most consistent and predictable of the original seven Breeders' Cup races (not counting the Filly & Mare Turf, begun in 1999).

Horses - Breeders Cup Distaff - To Win
- Updated January 27, 2021 16:05:44
Monomoy Girl3/2+150
Swiss Skydiver11/4+275
Harvest Moon12/1+1200
Ollies Candy16/1+1600
Dunbar Road16/1+1600
Point Of Honor20/1+2000

That record of consistency can be traced back as early as to the inaugural Breeders' Cup Distaff in 1984 at Hollywood Park in Inglewood, California. Princess Rooney, winner of the Vanity Handicap (G1) and Spinster Stakes (G1) in prior starts, went off as the 7-to-10 favorite and rolled to a seven-length victory.

In subsequent editions, the Distaff has been characterized generally by dominant winners scoring by open lengths, with Inside Information's 13 1/2-length win in 1995 remaining as the series' largest winning margin. In 2002, Azeri waltzed away to a 5-length victory to become Horse of the Year, and in 1986, Lady's Secret won by 2 1/2 lengths and, likewise, won Horse of the Year. Odds-on favorites have won the race seven times.

At the 2004 Breeders' Cup Distaff, Ashado bagged the championship at 2.00 odds with jockey John Velasquez. Storm Flag Flying placed second at 4.60 odds with jockey Jerry Bailey, and Stellar Jayne was in third place at 10.30 odds with jockey Robby Albarado.

In 2003, Adoration, the 40-1 longest shot on the board, won gate to wire by a widening 4 ½ lengths under jockey Pat Valenzuela in a time of 1:49 over the fast main track. 9-1 shot Elloluv tracked her the whole way and finished second, and it was another 2 1/2 lengths back to 4-1 Got Koko in third. 3-5 favorite Sightseek disappointed back in fourth, 3 ½ lengths in arrears of Got Koko. Adoration paid a whopping $83.40 to win as the longest odds entry in the field of seven.

Breeders' Cup organizers, Breeders' Cup Limited, shortened the Distaff's distance in 1988, from 1 1/4 miles to 1 1/8 miles, with no effect on the quality of the race. The 1988 running indeed remains one of the most memorable of all Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships races. Undefeated winner Personal Ensign, at first seemingly beaten at the sixteenth pole, closed relentlessly on Winning Colors, that year's Kentucky Derby (G1) victor, and put her nose in front at the wire to close out her career undefeated in 13 starts.

The Distaff winner of the 1991 Breeders' Cup races, Dance Smartly, earned an Eclipse Award as champion 3 year old filly and Canada's Horse of the Year after sweeping the Canadian Triple Crown. In 14 of 20 years, both the champion 3 year old filly and older female have competed in the Distaff.

Also enjoying admirable success in the Distaff are the supplemental entries, which are primarily top-quality mares from South America. There is Bayakoa (Argentina), who was supplemented for $200,000 in 1989 and 1990, and won in both years. The latter year is remembered as the darkest day in Breeders' Cup history, when Go for Wand broke down fatally while battling Bayakoa in Belmont Park's stretch. There is also Paseana (Argentina), who was supplemented in 1992 and 1993, winning in her first try while finishing second by a nose to Hollywood Wildcat in the latter year.

The biggest upset in Breeders' Cup Distaff history has to be in 2000, when dominant West Coast mare Riboletta (Brazil) went off as the 2-to-5 favorite but face difficulty in handling the hard Churchill Downs track, in the end, finishing seventh. Spain won the race at 55.90-to-1.

Racing Hall of Fame members who have contested the Distaff race of the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships are Princess Rooney, Lady's Secret, Personal Ensign, Winning Colors, Bayakoa, Go for Wand, Dance Smartly, Paseana, and Serena's Song.

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