11/01/2010 11:54PM

Californians at BC - thumbs up or down?

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Here is a California opinion of the California shippers in the Breeders’ Cup races Friday.

Marathon

Awesome Gem went off form after winning the Hollywood Gold Cup in July. He was not close in either start since. The hard-knocking veteran is tough to like, even facing easier.

Juvenile Fillies Turf

No starters in this grass race, same as the Juvenile Turf on Saturday.

Filly & Mare Sprint

Evening Jewel has had a long year, and has not sprinted since December. She returned to California after getting blown away last out at Keeneland. She might be over the top.

Gabby’s Golden Gal has not raced in nine months, but she won a G1 sprint before she disappeared. She worked super recently at Hollywood, and enters with a big look.

Switch gave Zenyatta a brief scare last month, but this fast-pace seven-furlong sprint is different. Switch’s best races were at Hollywood. She is tough to like at less than 15-1.

Sweet August Moon does not really qualify as a shipper. She stayed in Kentucky after her last start. She faced subpar California sprint fillies this year, and was exposed in the TCA.

Juvenile Fillies

A Z Warrior won a G1 at Belmont with a perfect trip over a runner-up that was best. It is hard to envision her getting the same trip in a big field going two turns. Bet against.

Indian Gracey is improving, and already raced twice over a route of ground. She is working well, and might be the best chance for a California upset on Friday.

Tell a Kelly disappointed in the two-turn G1 Oak Leaf, and disappointed working in Kentucky. Possibly best as a late-running sprinter, she is difficult to back as one of the favorites.

Izshelegal cannot be endorsed off her last three starts. She did nothing exceptional in any. But this is her first on dirt, and so she merits bomber potential at a huge price.

Filly & Mare Turf

Éclair de Lune won the Beverly D in August, and has looked good working in California. But the Beverly D was run without Tuscan Evening; Éclair de Lune could be outclassed.

Hibaayeb last out won a bad edition of the G1 Yellow Ribbon. The filly she beat by a length (Turning Top) returned to finish third Sunday in a G3. No thanks.

Ladies’ Classic

Blind Luck is the favorite, returning to preferred footing (dirt). She is training well, and enters with just one knock – she cuts it close against 3-year-olds, and is now facing older.

Summary

Gabby’s Golden Gal (F & M Sprint) and Indian Gracey (Juvenile Fillies) could be the best shots for California on Friday. And the good news is neither will be favored.

In the BC races on Saturday, California is in much better shape.