The football super-agent Kia Joorabchian has built a three-figure string on the Flat in the last couple of seasons and will have hopes of seeing his purple colours record their biggest success to date on Friday, when his runners on day one of the 2021 Breeders’ Cup meeting at Del Mark include Go Bears Go and Hello You in the Juvenile Turf Sprint and Juvenile Fillies’ Turf respectively.

Joorabchian’s list of clients includes Philippe Coutinho, whose €142m transfer fee to join Barcelona from Liverpool in January 2018 was the second-highest in history at the time, and his Amo Racing Club operation has been investing heavily in bloodstock ever since. His three-year-old colt Mojo Star finished second behind Adayar in the Derby at Epsom in June when still a maiden, while both Go Bears Go and Hello You have registered Group Two wins this season, in the Railway Stakes and Rockfel Stakes respectively.

A $1.54m (£1.14m) spend on eight lots at the recent Keeneland September Yearling Sale, meanwhile, heralded a new front for Amo Racing in the US, where Joorabchian is “spending more and more time” according to his main bloodstock agent, Alex Elliott.

A win for one of his runners on Friday’s card would recoup a decent slice of that outlay and the experienced Hello You (23.10 GMT) has a solid chance at around 9-1 in what looks a very open race. David Loughnane’s filly is a strong traveller and John Velasquez should be able to get a decent pitch from stall six, while she stayed on well over seven furlongs at Newmarket last time and the step up to a mile should suit.

Del Mar 21.50 (GMT) A strong European challenge for the Juvenile Turf Sprint is headed by Michael O’Callaghan’s Cornwallis Stakes winner, Twilight Jet, while Armor (Richard Hannon) and Go Bears Go (David Loughnane) also have chances on their best form. Wesley Ward has saddled the winning favourite for the last two seasons, however, and Averly Jane will take plenty of stopping in her bid to become a third. She is unbeaten in four starts and has enough early pace to grab the lead even from a slightly wide draw in stall eight.

Quick Guide

Greg Wood’s Breeders’ Cup day one tips


Del Mar 21.50 (GMT) Averly Jane 22.30 Echo Zulu 23.10 Hello You 23.50 Pinehurst 00.30 Albahr

Was this helpful?

Thank you for your feedback.

Del Mar 22.30 (GMT) A disappointing turnout of just six runners for the Juvenile Fillies’, though the three principals according to the betting – Echo Zulu, Jujus Map and Hidden Connection – have seven wins from eight starts between them. Echo Zulu is the clear pick on form after storming seven lengths clear of her field in the Grade One Frizette Stakes at Belmont last time.

Del Mar 23.50 (GMT) Unbeaten Jack Christopher is the likely favourite for Chad Brown but this step up to an extended mile is not certain to suit and Pinehurst, the Del Mar Futurity winner, is an interesting alternative at around 8-1. He was an easy four-and-a-half length winner last time and Friday’s trip could see further improvement.

Quick Guide

Bolshoi Ballet grabs Turf spot


Aidan O’Brien will field three of the 14 runners in the Breeders’ Cup Turf at Del Mar on Saturday after Bolshoi Ballet, who started favourite for the Derby at Epsom in June, was a last-minute addition to the line-up for the Grade One contest following the scratching of Domestic Spending.

Chad Brown’s runner was the second-favourite for the Turf behind Dermot Weld’s defending champion, Tarnawa, and the leading US-trained contender for the race. The four-year-old reportedly has swelling in his left fore leg. 

Bolshoi Ballet, the first reserve after the fields were set on Monday, joins his stable companions Broome and Japan in the Breeders’ Cup’s showpiece turf event, while Channel Maker, the second reserve, also made it into the final field after United was scratched earlier on Thursday. 

O’Brien, who will be aiming for his seventh win in the Turf, registered a Breeders’ Cup victory in the Mile at Keeneland 12 months ago with the 73-1 chance Order Of Australia, who also reached the field due to a scratch after initially being declared as the first reserve. 

Henry de Bromhead said on Thursday that A Plus Tard, the runner-up behind stable companion Minella Indo in the Gold Cup at Cheltenham in March, is likely to be his first ever runner at Haydock Park in the Grade One Betfair Chase later this month. 

“A Plus Tard is in mighty form,” de Bromhead said. “He worked really well the other day, and we’re aiming for the Betfair Chase. 

“There was no question about his stamina at Cheltenham. He’s an amazing horse to win a Grade One over two miles and a Grade one over three miles, there’s not many that do it. He’s brilliant and he’s still only seven, so he’s improving all the time.” 

De Bromhead also suggested that Minella Indo will be aimed towards the King George VI Chase at Kempton Park on Boxing Day. 

“I’d say Indo is highly likely,” the trainer said. “I know Indo is maybe not your typical King George horse, but we’ll certainly weigh it up nearer the time. It could be the King George or the Savills [at Leopardstown], we’ll see how that goes.”

Was this helpful?

Thank you for your feedback.

Del Mar 00.30 (GMT) A big target for the Europeans and Charlie Appleby in particular has a strong hand with Modern Games and Albahr. William Buick has opted for Modern Games, a Group Three winners at Newmarket last time, but Frankie Dettori is an eye-catching booking for the experienced Albahr, whose record includes a Grade One win on turf at Woodbine in Toronto.