If it seems like forever ago that Giant Expectations wired them in the San Antonio at 13-1 on opening day of the Santa Anita meet, that’s because it kinda was.
If Giant Expectations makes the starting gate for the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, he will be searching for his first win in nearly two years. His nine starts since that win have seen him try all kinds of things. Sprinting at Del Mar. Routing at Oaklawn. Setting the pace against McKinzie and Battle of Midway at Santa Anita. And three attempts to win over a one-turn mile. What he has NOT tried since July 2017 is the two-turn mile distance, and based on a review of his PPs and replays, that might be exactly what the doctor ordered.
Let’s say that anything at 9 furlongs or beyond is too far for Giant Expectations to fire his best shot. And then let’s say that his last two efforts have shown him to perhaps, JUST PERHAPS, be hitting his best stride at age 6. I base this suggestion on the tremendous race he ran in the Commentator at Belmont when stumbling so badly at the start that he almost lost the rider, and on the fact that he damn near beat Catalina Cruiser in the 7f Pat O’Brien last out.
Now, with those two assumptions front and center, let’s go back and look at his races going two turns at less than 9 furlongs (which we’ve already agreed is too far, remember?). That gives us a sample of two races- The win in the San Antonio, and a strong effort in the Essex at Oaklawn, both a 1 1/16th miles. A review of those replays, and pretty much all of his races for the most part, shows he is a fighter who just about always fires.
I think Giant Expectations is a major contender in the Dirt Mile, regardless of who else shows up. And he’ll be a price.