LEXINGTON, Ky(Aug. 27, 2019) – William S. Farish’s 3-year-old Code of Honor, fast-closing winner of Saturday’s $1.25 million Runhappy Travers Stakes (G1) at Saratoga, has risen from 10th to fourth place during the past week in the latest Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings, while Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman’s 4-year-old McKinzie, remains on top.

Code of Honor (120 votes), a chestnut son of Noble Mission (GB) out of the Dixie Union mare Reunited, trained by Shug McGaughey, won the Travers by three lengths under John Velazquez, completing the 1 ¼ miles in 2:01.05. The Travers was Code of Honor’s third graded stakes win this year, having taken the Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream Park and the Dwyer (G3) at Belmont Park in his previous start. Code of Honor also finished second in the Kentucky Derby (G1) following the disqualification of Maximum Security. 

The Bob Baffert-trained McKinzie (218 votes), winner of the Whitney (G1) at Saratoga on Aug. 3, has been the No. 1 horse for all 12 weeks of the Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings. Godolphin’s two-time Dubai World Cup (G1) winner Thunder Snow (IRE) (165 votes) retains the second-place position, followed by China Horse Club International, WinStar Farm and Head of Plains Partners’ 5-year-old Yoshida (JPN) (122 votes), who remains in third place. 

Gary and Mary West’s Haskell Invitational (G1) winner Maximum Security (112 votes) follows Code of Honor in fifth place, with Hronis Racing’s 4-year-old TVG Pacific Classic  (G1) winner Higher Power (88 votes) in sixth. 

Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable’s 4-year-old Vino Rosso (79 votes), third-place finisher in the Whitney, stays in seventh place, ahead of Gary and Mary West’s Game Winner (66 votes), the 2018 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) winner, who remains in eighth. 

Robert LaPenta, Madaket Stables, Siena Farm and Twin Creeks Racing Stables’ 4-year-old Catholic Boy (104 votes), second in the Suburban (G2) at Belmont on July 6, drops three places from sixth to ninth. 

Hronis Racing’s 6-year-old Santa Anita Handicap (G1) winner Gift Box (46 votes) slips one position to 10th. 

The Breeders’ Cup  Classic Rankings, a weekly rating of the top 10 horses in contention for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita Park, Nov. 2, are determined by a panel of leading Thoroughbred racing media, horseplayers and members of the Breeders’ Cup Racing Directors/Secretaries Panel. Rankings are announced each week through Oct. 15 and can be found on the Breeders’ Cup website along with the list of voting members. 

In the Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings, each voter ranks horses by assigning their allotted votes on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 system in descending order.  

Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings Top 10 – Aug. 27, 2019 *  

Rank Horse Total Votes First Place Votes Previous Week
1 McKinzie 218 20 1
2 Thunder Snow (IRE) 165 1 2
3 Yoshida (JPN) 122 0 3
4 Code of Honor 120 0 10
5 Maximum Security 112 0 4
6 Higher Power 88 0 5
7 Vino Rosso 79 0 7
8 Game Winner 66 0 8
9 Catholic Boy 52 1 6
10 Gift Box 46 0 9

 *Note – The Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings have no official bearing on qualification or selection into the Breeders’ Cup Classic.


Each NBC Sports Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series Win and You’re In – Presented by America’s Best Racing telecast will include the Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings with commentary from the on-air talent.

Upcoming races in the Classic Division that will be televised through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series programming include the Pennsylvania Derby (G1) from Parx Racing on Sept. 21; Awesome Again Stakes (G1) from Santa Anita Park and the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) from Belmont Park on Sept. 28. 

The 2019 Breeders’ Cup Classic, which will be run at 1 ¼ miles on the main track at Santa Anita, will be televised live and in primetime on NBC. Thirteen winners of the Classic have been voted Horse of the Year.

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