Check out our predictions and odds for the 2022 Beverly D. Stakes at Churchill Downs!
|B J Hernandez Jr||A Stall Jr|
|T Gaffalione||B Walsh|
|F Geroux||M Stidham|
|M Franco||C Brown|
|J Velazquez||A O’Brien|
$20 Exacta Box – Rougir and Lily Pond = $40
If you’re playing only to win, go with my top pick Rougir (9/5).
Pick made on 08/09/2022 at 05:07 PM EST
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A Group 1 winner in France, Rougir looks to give trainer Chad Brown a record seventh win in the Beverly D. when she headlines a compact but competitive field of five set for the Grade 1 turf race on Saturday at Churchill Downs.
The 4-year-old French-bred won the Grade 3 Beaugay in her first start of the year, but has been beaten in her last two, including a fourth-place finish in the Grade 1 Diana at Saratoga last month.
Chief among her rivals will be the five-time graded stakes winner Princess Grace. A 5-year-old daughter of Karakontie, she won her second consecutive edition of the Grade 3 Dr. James Penny Memorial Stakes at Parx last out in only her second start of the year.
Runner-up in the Grade 1 New York Stakes last time at 10 furlongs and a winner of the 12-furlong Orchid (G3) earlier this year, Family Way will cut back in distance on Saturday. The 9 furlongs of the Beverly D. will be the shortest she has run in more than a year.
Adding international intrigue to the $500,000 affair will be the Irish invader Lily Pond. Trained by Aiden O’Brien, the 3-year-old daughter of Galileo won the Group 2 Kilboy Estate Stakes at the Curragh in her most recent start.
The multiple stakes winner Dalika will round out the field of five.
As a “Win and You’re In” contest, the winner of the Beverly D. will get an automatic berth into the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf on November 5 at Keeneland.
This French mare brought nearly $3.4 million at auction last December and it’s time for her to live up to that hefty price tag. She already has a Group 1 win in France, in a very good performance, but winning one on this side of the pond would only add to her broodmare value.
Saturday’s Beverly D. looks like a good spot for her to achieve it. After an easy win in the Grade 3 Beaugay to start the season, she ran into an extremely slow pace in the New York Stakes, before getting blitzed by the front runner last time in the Diana.
Both performances in those Grade 1 races were a little disappointing, considering her reputation, but not bad efforts. This one looks just a little bit easier, and she should get a nice pace set-up for her rally. I like her chances to roll to the front down the lane here. She is the top pick.
A versatile sort, this 5-year-old Karakontie mare seems equally adept at setting the pace or coming from behind. Coming off a wire-to-wire score last time at Parx, she will probably look for the early lead in this short field.
That could be an effective strategy, but there are three others in here who do have the ability to put pressure on early. If left alone for too long, she could easily steal away and go wire-to-wire again. A winner of 7-of-11 lifetime, she clearly knows her way to the winners’ circle.
Still, I am not quite sold on her against Grade 1 competition. While I do fear her on Saturday, I will take a stand against her as she looks for her first victory against the highest level.
This daughter of Uncle Mo continues to improve and has made a name for herself while running long. In her last two starts, she finished a good second to two of the best turf mares in the nation.
Off those performances, she certainly deserves respect as she faces Grade 1 competition for the first time. Like several in the field, she also has the early speed to stay pretty close early. I do wonder about the cut back in distance, though.
Having run in eight straight races at 10 furlongs or longer, this will be a little different for her, but she has won at 9 furlongs at Churchill Downs before. She is a threat to win this, but not my top pick.
This Irish filly did not make her career debut until April of this year, but after an impressive debut on the all-weather surface at Dundalk, she moved right into group company.
Unsuccessfully stretched out to 14 furlongs two starts back, she cut back to 9 furlongs last time and looked good. There she beat older mares in a Group 2 event at the Curragh. She has good tactical speed, and trained by Aiden O’Brien, she comes from top connections.
Seemingly coming into her own as a top turf horse, she should fit in well with this group in her first start in America. She looks to be the biggest threat to my top pick.
This Al Stall-trained mare has been a solid turf horse since coming to the United States early in her 3-year-old season. Solid, but a cut below the Grade 1 level. This will be her third try at the highest level in the last four starts, and her fourth attempt overall and she has yet to finish in the money.
She does have good tactical speed and should be involved early, but there are others in here who also can prompt the pace. I cannot completely throw her out, but I do prefer each of the other four better.
|What||Beverly D. Stakes (Grade 1)|
|Time||Saturday, August 13 — 3:01pm Eastern time|
|How to Watch||TVG|
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Taken to the races at a very young age, Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Professionally, his work has been published on several leading industry sites. Brian served as the Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, where he still writes a regular column and hosts the popular weekly webcast HorseCenter.
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