Brad Cox is establishing himself as one of the top trainers in North America. Last year, his stable earned more than $15 million in purse money led by multiple Grade 1 winner Monomoy Girl, who gave Cox his first Breeders’ Cup victory in the Distaff and his first champion.
Despite Monomoy Girl being sidelined this entire year, Cox is enjoying another fine season with 197 wins and more than $13.4 million in earnings to date. He brings five horses to this year’s Breeders’ Cup led by the fabulous 3-year-old filly sprinter Covfefe.
Watch the 2019 Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita live on Sky Sports Racing (Sky 415 | Virgin 535) on Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd November.
ANDESITE (Juvenile Turf): A son of The Factor, he is coming off a runner-up finish to Structor in the Grade 3 Pilgrim Stakes at Belmont Park at 1 1-16 miles.
Cox said Andesite was a horse he trained in blinkers but has not yet raced him in them.
“He pulls on the bit just enough to keep me from putting the blinkers on him,” Cox said. “I do want him to relax the first part. He’s a horse that’s still learning and he’s going to improve with racing. It’s a solid, deep race like most Breeders’ Cup races, but he deserves an opportunity.”
BRITISH IDIOM (Juvenile Fillies): After winning a sprint race at Saratoga, this daughter of Flashback was being pointed to the Pocahontas Stakes at Churchill Downs in mid-September, but Cox didn’t feel she was right and backed off. He wound up running her in a tougher spot, the Grade 1 Alcibiades three weeks later at Keeneland, and British Idiom galloped to a 6 1-2-length victory.
“I think that was a good field she beat,” Cox said. “The second-place finisher was a multiple stakes winner. It wasn’t like we beat just a bunch of maiden winners. Her last two works since the Alcibiades, especially her last one at Churchill Downs, were really good.”
COVFEFE (Filly and Mare Sprint): Freakishly fast daughter of Into Mischief, this filly has won five of seven starts including the Grade 1 Test at Saratoga in August and the Dogwood Stakes at Churchill Downs on September 21st.
“She’s coming into the race every bit as good as she went into the Test and the Dogwood, no doubt in my mind,” Cox said. “She’s been a machine all year and she has picked it up since the summer. The Test was the goal to start the year and she’s turned it on since and is training extremely well.”
Though she is fast, Cox doesn’t feel she has to be on the lead so he’s not concerned with her having to break from the rail.
“She’s 2 for 2 from the rail,” Cox said. “I don’t want to go in 21-and-1 or 22-flat. I feel confident with Joel [Rosario] that she does not have be on the lead. She can sit off of horses. We’re going to ask her to run away from there and get position. Rosario can adjust to whatever other people are doing. She’s a classy filly who will respond.
ARKLOW (Turf): Fourth in this race last year, he earned a second shot at the Turf with a victory in the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic, a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup.
“Obviously, he’s going to have to step up but I feel like it’s a somewhat of a wide-open race with this not being Brick’s And Mortar’s preferred distance. It’s a solid race, he’s obviously the horse to beat but I feel like the whole mile-and-a-half division as far as the American horses go, all of them can beat each other on a given day.
“If a mile and a half isn’t Bricks And Mortar’s thing and if the Europeans don’t run as well as they’re supposed to one of these American mile and a half horses can get there so why can’t it be him?”
OWENDALE (Classic): Improving 3-year-old son of Into Mischief has a trio of Grade 3 stakes wins this year and ran competitively in the Preakness (third) and Travers (fifth). Is one would benefit from a strong early pace.
He comes into this off a 1 3-4-length victory in the Grade 3 Oklahoma Derby.
“I think if he gets the trip, he’s going to be tough, he fits with this group,” Cox said. “He’s got to move forward a bit but I think he can and he will.”