Old Forester Bourbon Turf Classic Stakes 2021 Entries & Post Positions

Trainer Todd Pletcher has the big time favorite in the Old Forester Bourbon Turf Classic in Colonel Liam
Trainer Todd Pletcher has the big time favorite in the Old Forester Bourbon Turf Classic in Colonel Liam

The Grade I Old Forester Bourbon Turf Classic Stakes is the big turf race at Churchill Downs on the Kentucky Derby undercard

The $1,000,000 purse for four-year-olds and above has attracted nine runners including the reigning Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational champion. Check out the Entries and Post Positions below along with an overview of the field from our editor.

Old Forester Bourbon Turf Classic Entries & Post Positions 2021
  • Post Position
  • Horse

Post Position

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  • Masteroffoxhounds
  • Count Again
  • Colonel Liam
  • Ivar
  • Domestic Spending
  • Digital Age
  • Smooth Like Strait
  • Cross Border
  • Ride a Comet
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Yesterday I was chatting to our turf-man J.N. and he flippantly said that maybe Colonel Liam entering the Turf Classic had scared away the competition. It was just a casual remark but it shows that sometimes when superb horses enter these races - trainers and connections might look for alternatives. When the official Entries came out though it painted a very different picture as this looks set to be a real race.

The Morning Line odds aren’t out as of the time of writing this but the Todd Pletcher trained four-year-old has every chance of opening as an odds-on favorite for the Turf Classic. He is quite simply that good but the field screams value.

He followed up that win at Gulfstream Park in the Pegasus World Cup Turf with a strong run in the Grade II Muniz Memorial Classic where he found an extra gear in the final furlong. Yet despite all of this I’m not all-in on this one if he is an odds-on play.

Chad Brown trains Digital Age who has had a so-so career but when you throw in the factoid that his only two Graded Stakes wins have come under the Twin Spires on the Kentucky Derby undercard then surely that is something to look at and take note of.

He took out the Grade II American Turf in 2019 before winning this race last fall. Those two runs were his only two at Churchill Downs. Maybe he just really likes this track? Hasn’t run since an extremely disappointing 11th in the Breeders’ Cup Mile last November so is coming off of a six-month layoff to freshen up.

Shadwell Turf Mile winner Ivar is also in the field. Another winner at Grade I level, this son of Agnes Gold has come over from Brazil and looked strong against American competition. Like Digital Age above, he’s been off since the BC Mile whereupon he finished fourth. Plenty to like here and plenty of potential value.

Chad Brown sends out Hollywood Derby winner Domestic Spending. The four-year-old has only tasted defeat once in five career races and is on a two-race winning streak to end his three-year-old campaign. He's refreshed and one to consider here.

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Richard Baltas has shipped Masteroffoxhounds across from the west coast for this race. In 2020 he was racing over in Ireland before moving to the States and winning first time out at Del Mar before following that up with a victory at Santa Anita in the Grade II San Marcos. The classy United beat him last time out in the Grade III San Luis Rey but this is another horse who - on his day - could cause Colonel Liam a problem.

Michael Maker also has a good looking horse in the field with seven-year-old Cross Border having hit the board in four straight - including the Pegasus World Cup Turf and the Pan American- both at Gulfstream. Yet another horse you have to look at closely.

Smooth Like Strait has a couple of nice Grade II victories to his name over at Santa Anita. This nice looking four-year-old has only failed to hit the board twice in 11 starts with seven of those races coming at Graded Stakes level. I know some of the west coast turf races don’t attract the best fields but the son of Midnight Lute is extremely consistent.

Mark Casse has another Woodbine star on the Derby Day undercard as three-time winner up in Canada Ride a Comet goes for him. This six-year-old son of Candy Ride however is no Woodbine specialist as he has a Del Mar Derby win on his resume along with the Tropical Turf over at Gulfstream Park. Finishing second in the Maker’s Mark Mile at Keeneland proves he’s another game horse.

Lastly Philip D'Amato will saddle up Count Again - who won the Grade II Seabiscuit Handicap at Del Mar late last year. This son of Awesome Again may have cooled off in his previous two starts but his final furlong in the Frank E. Kilmoe Mile last time out was strong. Really strong. The extra eighth of a mile will do him no harm whatsoever.

For me Colonel Liam is the best horse in the field but this is not a slam dunk back the favorite race. Plenty of horses who can make this more than interesting.

We’ll have full coverage of the 2021 Turf Classic Stakes here on horseracing.net/us - our turf-man will publish his horse-by-horse analysis of the race on Wednesday and our full Turf Classic Stakes handicapping preview will go live from our in-house handicapper on Friday afternoon. So bookmark the site for full Turf Classic Stakes coverage throughout the week.

You can bet on the Old Forester Bourbon Turf Classic on the Kentucky Derby undercard with any of our betting partners via the Race Card below. Just click on the odds of the horse you'd like to back and then select which operator/sign-up bonus you'd like to use. You'll then be taken to their site to complete the sign-up process so you can place your bet on the race...

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