The hype surrounding West Coast has also been substantiated by on track performance. Exploding on to the scene with wins in the 2017 Penn Derby and Travers Stakes, West Coast was the best three-year-old by the end of the year. He placed 3rd in the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Classic behind Gun Runner and Collected, but then improved his standing by taking 2nd in the 2018 Pegasus Cup behind Gun Runner once more. Baffert’s prized four-year-old now takes his talents far overseas to the 2018 Dubai World Cup where this once unheralded son of Flatter has been listed as the favorite.
West Coast opened with 5/4 odds that have been quickly bet down to even money and may shade even lower by the time the race goes off on Saturday, March 31st. He is definitely on the road to becoming the top contender for the 2018 Breeders’ Cup Classic and will need a big win in the 2018 Dubai World Cup to maintain his spot as one of the best active racers in the world. This would also put a severe multiplier on his winnings, which are just over $3.5 million currently.
Previously known as the “richest horse race in the world”, the Dubai World Cup is still worth an astonishing $10,000,000.
Challenging West Coast is a slew of hopefuls that are distant choices in terms of odds. Forever Unbridled is going to receive plenty of interest given her resounding Breeders’ Cup Distaff victory last year, and comes in at 8/1 alongside Gunnevera. Talismanic is the 7/1 second choice after a strong run in Prix Dasheen over in France. As a strong contender who is used to overseas travel, Talismanic has competed all the way from Europe to Hong Kong.
But travel shouldn’t impact West Coast too greatly, not with Bob Baffert in charge. The fact that he has flown this colt overseas to compete in this illustrious race speaks volumes about how confident Baffert is in his prospect.
A handful of longshots fill up the remainder of the field including North America and Thunder Snow, who each earned winds on the Al Maktoum Challenge rounds. Mubtaahij, a two time competitior in this race, is a 16/1 longshot to win the 2018 Dubai World Cup. Awardee, Pavel and Furia Cruazada all round out the field.
We all know that this is West Coast’s race to win. All of the eyeballs will be fixated on how he performs. So will all the money.
You can watch the 2018 Dubai World Cup on Saturday, March 31st at 12:30pm ET on NBC Sports Network or the TwinSpires.com mobile app.
2018 Dubai World Cup – Saturday, March 31st at Medyan Racecourse
1 1/8th Miles – 3+ Year Old Horses – $10,000,000
|1||Awardee||Y. Take||M. Matsunaga||33/1|
|2||North America||R. Mullen||S. Seemar||10/1|
|3||Gunnevera||J. Rosario||A. Sano||8/1|
|4||Furia Cruzada||A. Fresu||E. Charpy||50/1|
|5||Mubtaahij||V. Espinoza||B. Baffert||16/1|
|6||Forever Unbridled||M. Smith||D. Stewart||8/1|
|7||Talismanic||M. Barzalona||A. Fabre||7/1|
|8||Pavel||M. Gutierrez||D. O’Neil||33/1|
|9||West Coast||J. Catellano||B. Baffert||5/4|
|10||Thunder Snow||C. Soumillon||S. Bin Suroor||12/1|