10/24/2012 1:10PM

Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf: Top contenders are all European

Shigeki Kikkawa
Marketing Mix, winning the Rodeo Drive Stakes, may be the best American hope in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf.

After European dominance in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf throughout much of the last decade, North American-based runners have shined in recent years, with Shared Account winning in 2010 for America and Perfect Shirl in 2011 for Canada.

If North American-based horses are to three-peat this year, it will require an upset, just as in 2010 and 2011. Of the 13 horses pre-entered for the Nov. 2 Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf, five have raced mostly in Europe this year, and all are leading contenders, led by Group 1 winners The Fugue and Ridasiyna.

[BREEDERS' CUP 2012: Pre-entered fields with odds and comments]

William Hill, one of the largest bookmakers in the United Kingdom, installed The Fugue as favorite at 5-2 odds as of midday Wednesday, with Ridasiyna next at 3-1.

Two other Europeans aren’t too far behind. British raider Nahrain, who shipped from overseas to win the Grade 1 Flower Bowl at Belmont, sits at 6-1; and I’m a Dreamer, who raced three times in the United Kingdom before winning the Beverly D. and then running fourth in the Flower Bowl, is 10-1.

Only Up is considered a longshot European by William Hill. A two-time winner of group events this year in Ireland, she is 20-1.

Rodeo Drive winner Marketing Mix, a close second in the Beverly D. to I’m a Dreamer, is widely expected to be the shortest price of the North American-based horses, standing at 6-1 on William Hill’s line. Following her in terms of odds is 10-1 Zagora, a French-bred filly who was imported to America two years ago.

Other pre-entries, with William Hill odds include: Del Mar Oaks winner Lady of Shamrock, 14-1; Spinster winner In Lingerie, 16-1; 2011 Matriarch winner Star Billing, 25-1; Rodeo Drive runner-up Nereid, 33-1; Del Mark Oaks second-place finisher Stormy Lucy, 33-1; and South American invader Almudena, 50-1.

Three of the 13 Filly and Mare pre-entries were cross-entered in other Breeders’ Cup races. The connections of Almudena announced the Marathon as their first preference over the Filly and Mare Turf; The Fugue was entered with first preference to the Filly and Mare Turf and second preference to the Turf; and In Lingerie was entered with first preference as the Filly and Mare Turf, and second preference to the Ladies’ Classic.

Irrespective of cross entries, without an overflow field there will be no exclusions from the Filly and Mare Turf.