BREEDERS' CUP 2011: Thursday Odds and Ends

Eldaafer won last year's Breeders' Cup Marathon. If you want to see this year's winner, you'll have to watch TVG. ESPN/ABC has decided to not broadcast the 2011 Breeders' Cup Marathon.

A few unrelated Breeders' Cup notes came out today, two of which come via the Thoroughbred Times, and the other from the Daily Racing Form:

-First, So You Think (NZ), fresh of a 4th place finish in the Arc and a 2nd place finish in last Saturday's Champion Stakes on British Champions Day, will enter the Breeders' Cup Classic

Although the Classic will be So You Think's first try on dirt, he fits the 10 furlong distance much better than the 12 furlong Turf.  So You Think has won seven times at ten furlongs but has yet to record a victory in a race longer than 11 furlongs. He's also run well on firmer ground, which should help the transition to dirt.

-The other big bit of news out today is the broadcast schedule for ESPN/ABC and that apparently the network, with three channels and an streaming internet service - ESPN3 - at their disposal, won't be showing the Marathon (Thoroughbred Times: Marathon not part of ESPN's Breeders' Cup Coverage).

The Marathon isn't one of the top Breeders' Cup events, we all know that.  It holds Grade 2 status but, for most people, it ranks pretty low on interest when compared to the other races.  At the same time, if ESPN/ABC wants to broadcast the Breeders' Cup, then broadcast the Breeders' Cup.

Coverage of the Marathon will be provided by TVG, which is interesting since HRTV is the exclusive CDN broadcaster.

Does anybody else get the feeling that the Breeders' Cup will end up back on NBC/Versus in the future?  I certainly do.

-In a final, and unfortunate, bit of news (via DRF.com) is the possibility that Smiling Tiger will miss the Breeders' Cup Sprint due to what trainer Jeff Bonde called "issues".

It happens every year, but it's tough to read about all the horses that are unable to make it to the Breeders' Cup.

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