10/24/2012 2:26PM

Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf draws 19 pre-entries, led by seven Europeans

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Barbara D. Livingston
Noble Tune is one of two Juvenile Turf pre-entrants from trainer Chad Brown.

With 19 pre-entered, the Juvenile Turf attracted more pre-entries than any other 2012 Breeders’ Cup event, followed by the Juvenile Fillies Turf, with 18, and the Turf Sprint, with 17 pre-entries. And the Juvenile Turf, a one-mile race with a purse of $1 million, also attracted more European pre-entrants than any other of this year’s Breeders’ Cup events with seven. European runners have won three of the first five runnings of the Juvenile Turf. As with all Breeders’ Cup races, the Juvenile Turf field will be capped at 14.

Heading the solid European contingent is Dundonnell and Artigiano. Dundonnell is 2 for 4, including a victory over Steeler (who was not pre-entered) in a Group 3 stakes two starts back. Artigiano is 1 for 6, but he turned in his best performance yet when second to Steeler in the Group 2 Juddmonte Royal Lodge last time out.

Aidan O’Brien, who sent out Wrote to a decisive victory in last year’s Juvenile Turf, has two pre-entrants, George Vancouver and Lines of Battle. George Vancouver hit the board in Group 1 stakes in two of his last three starts, but has not been consistent as evidenced by a dull sixth two starts back in a Group 3 race as the 3-5 favorite. Lines of Battle recently improved his record to 2 for 4 with an easy score at Dundalk.

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

Another European, Rising Legend, is perhaps the most surprising member of the also-eligible list, which is ranked in order of preference. And Rising Legend, who has won two straight and has never been worse than third in six starts, is buried on that list in fourth.

Leading the American pre-entrants is Noble Tune, who was very impressive winning the Pilgrim Stakes in his last start to be perfect after two starts. The Pilgrim was run on the sort of very deep going that is sure to be the polar opposite of what will be had at Santa Anita during the Breeders’ Cup, but Noble Tune was impressive winning his debut at Saratoga on firm ground.

Noble Tune is one of two Juvenile Turf pre-entrants from trainer Chad Brown. His other pre-entrant is Balance the Books, who came from way back to narrowly win the Bourbon and With Anticipation Stakes in his last two starts.

Gervinho and Dry Summer, who won the two Southern California stakes that were preps for the Juvenile Turf, also were pre-entered. Gervinho showed a strong late kick to win the Zuma Beach on the Santa Anita turf course and improve his record to 2 for 2, while Dry Summer won the Oak Tree Juvenile Turf at Del Mar two starts back.

[BREEDERS' CUP PPs: Visit DRF's official BC Handicapping Center]

Notably, Joha is the only Grade or Group 1 winner in the entire Juvenile Turf field. Joha led all the way to win the Grade 1 Breeders’ Futurity on Keeneland’s Polytrack last time out after getting caught by Balance the Books in the With Anticipation two starts back.