Saudi Cup 2023: Country Grammer Can Go From California to Victory

Saudi Cup 2023: Country Grammer Can Go From California to Victory

Category : News - Fri 24/02/2023 - 06:17 EST

The Saudi Cup (G1) at King Abdulaziz Racecourse on Saturday, February 25 is one of the newest traditions in horse racing, and also the absolute richest. The race offers a staggering $20 million purse, and always draws a field of top-class horses to contest for it. Covering 1,800 meters (about 1 ⅛ miles) on dirt, the race brings a mix of top dirt horses as well as turf horses trying another surface for a massive reward.

The Saudi Cup is also one of the best betting horse races of the year. The race features a competitive world-class field, and its short winners’ list proves that it can be a wide-open affair. Although favored American dirt horse Maximum Security won its first edition in 2020, British turf runner Mishriff upset the race in 2021 and then Saudi local Emblem Road won as a massive longshot in 2022.

To find out who to play in the 2023 Saudi Cup and see the best places to play the Saudi Cup online in California, keep on reading!

Saudi Cup Betting Online

Even though we cannot all be trackside for the spectacle of the Saudi Cup, the best way to be part of the action is to bet it at a trusted online racebook. Though there are many betting websites, our experts can help make your decision quick, easy, and confident. They have done their homework, and the list of recommended online racebooks will help you make a great choice.

All of our expert-vetted online racebooks offer the basics: market-leading odds, a great user interface, and trustworthy deposit and cash-out features. Our experts also explain the horse racing bonuses at each site, so you can make a confident decision about which one suits your betting style best. Taking a few minutes now to look at bonuses can mean hundreds or even thousands of dollars in sign-up and deposit incentives, rebates, and referral benefits!

Saudi Cup Field

This is the official field for the 2023 Saudi Cup including draw numbers, post positions, trainers, and jockeys:

  1. Panthalassa (Yoshito Yahagi / Yutaka Yoshida) - Betting Number 7
  2. Taiba (Bob Baffert / Mike Smith) - Betting Number 10
  3. Crown Pride (Koichi Shintani / Damian Lane) - Betting Number 3
  4. Scotland Yard (Moutaib Almulawah / Victor Gutierrez) - Betting Number 9
  5. Sunset Flash (Naif Almandeel / Aseel Alarhani) - Betting Number 13
  6. Jun Light Bolt (Yasuo Tomomichi / Ryan Moore) - Betting Number 6
  7. Remorse (Bhupat Seemar / Tadhg O’Shea) - Betting Number 8
  8. Emblem Road (Moutaib Almulawah / Alexis Moreno) - Betting Number 4
  9. Vin de Garde (Hideaki Fujiwara / Mickael Barzalona) - Betting Number 11
  10. Country Grammer (Bob Baffert / Frankie Dettori) - Betting Number 2
  11. Lagertha Rhyme (Naif Almandeel / Ricardo Ferreira) - Betting Number 12
  12. Geoglyph (Tetsuya Kimura / Christophe Lemaire) - Betting Number 5
  13. Cafe Pharoah (Noriyuki Hori / Joao Moreira) - Betting Number 1

Keep in mind that the betting numbers and post positions in Saudi Arabia differ; this is unlike California or other tracks in North America, but common in the rest of the world.

Keep in mind that any morning line released by the track is merely a guide. If you bet the Saudi Cup at a racetrack, the odds will fluctuate until post time and you cannot be certain what you will be paid if you win. Your best bet is to wager at an online racebook. Since online racebooks offer fixed-odds betting on major races, you can lock in your price at the moment you bet!

Saudi Cup Handicapping

Now that you have your betting account set up and you’ve gotten a look at the field, it’s time to do the serious handicapping. Read on to find out what you need to know to pick a winner in the Saudi Cup!

Saudi Cup Top Contenders

The likely shortest prices in the Saudi Cup are the pair of horses from California: Country Grammer and Taiba, both multiple Grade 1 winners and both trained by Bob Baffert. Country Grammer is the better choice. He will be fitter than he was when he ran second last year, his midpack style plays well at King Abdulaziz, and he is already proven over the course.

Taiba, on the other hand, will be on or near the lead, and will have to battle with proven speedster Crown Pride, who will make it tough. He also has less experience against older foes, with only a third in the Breeders’ Cup Classic against horses four or older, and no experience shipping overseas.

The shortest price among the Japanese contingent is Jun Light Bolt. He has good recent form including a Champions Cup (G1) win over Crown Pride, though Japanese dirt form does not translate overseas reliably enough to take him at a short price in this race.

Saudi Cup Longshots

Last year local Emblem Road lit the tote on fire with his late-running victory. He doesn’t have quite as much recent form this year, especially to justify a shorter price, but a couple of other Saudi locals turn heads and should provide a good challenge at a square price.

Chief among them is Lagertha Rhyme. Though she was second to Sunset Flash last out, the sharper early pace this time as well as the longer distance suit Lagertha Rhyme perfectly. Expect her sharp late kick to make her an imposing threat during the late stages of the Saudi Cup.

Scotland Yard also deserves a long look. He did not win in four starts in the United States, but is undefeated in three Saudi starts and the four-year-old is only getting better. The turn back from a win at 2,000 meters last out means he should be nicely fit, he has tactical speed, and his pedigree shines both for this 1,800 meter distance and for getting better with age, as he is by Quality Road out of a Curlin half to Beholder.

Geoglyph is the most intriguing of the Japanese contingent. Though he goes first-time dirt, he has pedigree for it: Drefong on top with some other proven dirt horses underneath. He has also proven his stamina for this trip, with stakes wins at 1800 and 2000 meters on grass.

Saudi Cup Bets

You’ve met the contenders and set up your online racebook account. All that’s left to do is place your bets!

These are the best bets for Saturday’s 2023 Saudi Cup:

  • $20 to win - #2 Country Grammer
  • $10 each-way - #12 Lagertha Rhyme
  • $1 exacta key - #2 Country Grammer with #9 Scotland Yard, #12 Lagertha Rhyme
  • $0.50 trifecta key - #2 Country Grammer with #5 Geoglyph, #9 Scotland Yard, #12 Lagertha Rhyme
  • $0.20 superfecta key - #2 Country Grammer with #5 Geoglyph, #9 Scotland Yard, #10 Taiba, #12 Lagertha Rhyme
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