Major League Baseball executive Joe Torre’s Game on Dude is among the 180 thoroughbred race horses pre-entered in the 29th Breeders’ Cup Championships.
The 5-year-old gelding, trained by Bob Baffert, finished second last year in the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, the richest horse race in North America. Game on Dude has won nine of 20 starts and has earned nearly $3 million.
Game on Dude is the early favorite at 5-2, with Royal Delta, trained by Bill Mott, at 6-1, according to Mike Watchmaker, the national handicapper for the Daily Racing Form.
The 15-race championship series will be run over Nov. 2-3 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California, with more than $25 million paid out in purses.
Besides Game on Dude and Royal Delta, 12 other horses have been pre-entered in the Classic for a full field, including Dullahan, Flat Out, Handsome Mike, Nonios, Ron the Greek, To Honor and Serve, Alpha, Brilliant Speed, Fort Larned, Mucho Macho Man, Pool Play and Richard’s Kid.
Royal Delta, the winner of last year’s Ladies Classic, is returning to defend her title, although the filly may enter the Classic to race against male competitors on Nov. 3.
For the first time, all 2-year-olds will be racing without the use of Lasix, a medication used to control bleeding in the lungs.
Santa Anita is hosting the Breeders’ Cup for the sixth time. Six races will be run on the first day, highlighted by the Ladies’ Classic, and nine, including the Classic, on the following day.