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Cox’s Knicks Go leads 2021 Breeders’ Cup Classic odds

Breeders' Cup Classic odds

DEL MAR, CA - NOVEMBER 04: Gun Runner ridden by Florent Geroux (#5) defeats Collected ridden by Martin Garcia (#11) and West Coast ridden by Javier Castellano (#8) to win the Breeders’ Cup Classic on day two of the 2017 Breeders’ Cup World Championship at Del Mar Race Track on November 4, 2017 in Del Mar, California.

Brad Cox’s Knicks Go opens as the 5-2 favorite to lead the 2021 Breeders’ Cup Classic odds at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club on Saturday, Nov. 6. He will start from the No. 5 spot. Post time for the Breeders’ Cup Classic is set for approximately 8:40 p.m. ET.

Knicks Go returns to the Breeders’ Cup after winning last year’s Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile wire-to-wire and is on a three-race winning streak with including the G1 Whitney Stakes. Starting next to him in the fourth stall is Brad Cox’s other colt, Essential Quality (3-1), who won the 2021 Belmont Stakes and 2020 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.

Essential Quality’s only loss in his last nine starts came in the Kentucky Derby, where he finished fourth behind Medina Spirit. Prior to the Kentucky Derby, human rights lawyers filed a formal complaint to the Kentucky Horse Race Commission to ban him and his owner, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, from participating due to a UK family court finding that Sheikh Mohammed arranged the kidnapping of his adult daughters, forcibly returning them to Dubai after they attempted to flee abroad on three different occasions.

Another controversial entry is Bob Baffert’s Medina Spirit (4-1) starting in the eighth position. Despite being banned in New York and Kentucky after Medina Spirit tested positive for a banned substance at the Kentucky Derby, Baffert is able to enter his horse in the 2021 Breeders’ Cup Classic at Del Mar on Saturday, Nov. 6. Extra security measures have been taken to assure that there is no scandal.

The always exciting Hot Rod Charlie (4-1) will also be in the field in the third spot. He will be looking to avenge narrow losses to Medina Spirit and Essential Quality at the Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes, respectively.

Related: 2021 Breeders’ Cup schedule

Idol was supposed to run in the Breeders’ Cup Classic but was pulled by trainer Richard Baltas, who didn’t feel comfortable running him after coming up “tight behind” cooling out.

NBC Sports is home to the 2021 Breeders’ Cup, providing comprehensive race coverage and analysis live on TV, and the NBC Sports app before, during and after. Coverage kicks off with Future Stars Friday on November 5, from 5-9 p.m. on NBCSN, and the NBC Sports app. NBC Sports will resume coverage the following day on NBCSN, and the NBC Sports app beginning at 2:30 p.m., with the broadcast jumping to NBC from 8-9 p.m.

Related: What to know about the 2021 Breeders’ Cup

Below are the 2021 Breeders’ Cup Classic odds and post positions as of Monday, Nov. 3.

1. Tripoli (15-1)
Trainer: John Sadler
Jockey: Irad Ortiz, Jr.

2. Express Train (20-1)
Trainer: John Shirreffs
Jockey: Victor Espinoza

3. Hot Rod Charlie (4-1)
Trainer: Doug O’Neill
Jockey: Flavien Prat

4. Essential Quality (3-1)
Trainer: Brad Cox
Jockey: Luis Saez

5. Knicks Go (5-2)
Trainer: Brad Cox
Jockey: Joel Rosario

6. Art Collector (8-1)
Trainer: William Mott
Jockey: Mike Smith

7. Stiletto Boy (30-1)
Trainer: Ed Moger, Jr.
Jockey: Kent Desormeaux

8. Medina Spirit (4-1)
Trainer: Bob Baffert
Jockey: John Velasquez

9. Max Player (8-1)
Trainer: Steven Asmussen
Jockey: Ricardo Santana, Jr.