Breeders’ Cup Classic Results
The 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic was the main event at the weekend-long World championships that took place at Santa Anita. While nine horses assumed the field, the entire focus remained on two very specific rivals. All eyes were on Arrogate and California Chrome.
Art Sherman’s star pupil, California Chrome, had spent the better part of 2016 resurrecting his career. After finishing third in the 2014 renewal of the Breeders’ Cup Classic, the beloved champion endured an injury riddled 2015 campaign that saw him bow out by mid-season. Making his return early in 2016, California Chrome was out to prove that there was still plenty left in the tank.
California Chrome began to single handedly eviscerate the competition throughout the year. He destroyed the field in the Dubai World Cup, then returned home to fend off Dortmund on three consecutive occasions while also beating the legendary Beholder in the Pacific Classic. There was no doubt that the 2016 campaign belonged to the one-time Horse of the Year.
But off in the distance, another challenger was emerging amongst the three-year-old colt class. Arrogate had come out of nowhere to win the Travers Stakes in the late summer, and did so by running a 1 ¼ mile in 1:59.36. It was the fastest time in the history of the Travers Stakes.
That victory put Arrogate firmly on the map, and made him a tight 5/2 favorite right behind California Chrome, who was the even money favorite. The pair erupted from the gates, setting a steady pace with California Chrome out in front and Arrogate not far off the lead.
While Melatonin fought to stay with them in second place, he faded immediately at the top of the final stretch. California Chrome seemed well on his way to victory with a solid length separating him from Arrogate who burst from the clouds. The perfect season for California Chrome seemed well in hand, but Arrogate found another gear and throttled to the finish line in a pulse pounding finish that served to pass the torch from one champion to another.
With the win, Arrogate delivered $5.40, $2.80 and $2.60. California Chrome was worth $2.60 and $2.40 in second place. Keen Ice came through as a 20/1 longshot to steal third and paid out $5.40 to show.
Eventually the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic served as a fitting exclamation point to a weekend that was filled with wild upsets, thrilling finishes and memorable moments. Nobody will forget the sight of Arrogate’s incredible victory over a horse that seemed unbeatable during the 2016 campaign.