Select Sales Agency Presents American Graded Stakes Standings: The Races To Fill Out The Podium - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Select Sales Agency Presents American Graded Stakes Standings: The Races To Fill Out The Podium

Jockey Paco Lopez guides Alms to the winner’s circle after their victory in the Grade III, $100,000 Jimmy Durante Stakes, Saturday, November 30, 2019 at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, Del Mar CA.© BENOIT PHOTO

Following the rush of graded stakes races that occurred during and around the Breeders' Cup in early November, the racing calendar eased off the gas pedal in the latter part of the month, and the very top of the American Graded Stakes Standings went practically unchanged.

Without much activity at the very top of the rankings, this month's check-in will look at some of the races bubbling under the surface that will determine who finishes on the rest of the podium at the end of 2019.

Stonestreet and Calumet Farms have been neck-and-neck for the lead among breeders for most of the year and ended the month of November with seven winners a piece. However, powerhouse operations Godolphin and WinStar Farm could insert themselves into the race in its final month, both with six graded winners.

Godolphin jumped into fray in November when homebred Alms picked up his second graded win of the year in the Grade 3 Jimmy Durante Stakes at Del Mar, adding to a list of graded winners that also includes She's a Julie, Maxfield, Old Persian, and Secret Spice. WinStar Farm's six graded winners on the year are Quip, Nicodemus, Global Campaign, Five Star General, Eight Rings, and Brave Nation.

The race for leading sire is led by Hill 'n' Dale Farms' Curlin with 11 graded winners, and the battle for second place is locked between Gainesway's Tapit and Candy Ride of Lane's End, each with nine.

Neither of the trailing stallions picked up any graded winners in the aftermath of the Breeders' Cup weekend. The two stallions who did the most in that span of time were Midnight Lute and Archarcharch, who each tallied two graded stakes winners. Hill 'n' Dale's Midnight Lute now has four graded winners on the year after Midcourt won the G3 Native Diver and Smooth Like Strait won the G3 Cecil B. Demille, both at Del Mar. Archarcharch now has two graded winners, with Next Shares taking the G2 Seabiscuit Handicap at Del Mar and Mr. Misunderstood winning the G3 River City Handicap at Churchill Downs.

Chad Brown's lead in the trainer standings is insurmountable at this point, but Steve Asmussen tightened his grip on the runner-up spot, sweeping the marquee juvenile races of the Churchill Downs fall meet to bring his total to 14 winners. Silver Prospector took the G2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes for the Asmussen barn, while Finite won the G2 Golden Rod Stakes. Asmussen sits three wins ahead of Bob Baffert, who won the G3 Bob Hope Stakes at Del Mar with High Velocity.

One of the categories that could see a shakeup in the final month of the year comes in the jockey division, where Javier Castellano holds a 35-33 advantage over Irad Ortiz Jr. The race for third is just as heated, with John Velazquez entering December with 28 graded wins, Joel Rosario with 27, and Jose Ortiz with 26.

Of that group of five jockeys, Joel Rosario comes into December with the hottest hand, posting three graded scores in the weeks following the Breeders' Cup. He booted home a pair of Grade 3 winners at Aqueduct in Discovery victor Performer and Long Island winner Si Que Es Buena, and he capped the month off with a win aboard Tom's d'Etat in the G1 Clark Handicap.

[table id=743 /]
Paulick Report Icon

Receive daily headlines, breaking news alerts, promotions, and much more!

Become An Insider

Support our journalism and access bonus content on our Patreon stream

Learn More