News and STORIES

Code of Honor Moves to Fourth Place in Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings

Author: Don Mckee
Published: Wednesday August 28, 2019

William S Farish’s 3-year-old Code of Honor, the winner of Saturday’s $1.25 million Runhappy Travers Stakes (G1) at Saratoga, has moved up from 10th place to fourth in the most recent Breeders’ Cup Classic Ranking. The top spot is still held by Mike Pegram, Karl Watson, and Paul Weitman’s 4-year-old McKinzie. 

The Travers played a big role in moving Code of Honor (120 votes), son of Noble Mission (GB) out of Dixie Union mare Reunited, up in the rankings. He won the race by three lengths under jockey John Velazquez and finished the 1 1/4 miles in 2:01.05. The race was his third graded stakes win this year, after crossing first in Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream Park and Dwyer (G3) at Belmont Park. 

Code of Honor also finished second in the Kentucky Derby (G1) after the disqualification of the first place Maximum Security. 

Others in the Ranking

McKinzie (218 votes), trained by Bob-Baffert, won the Whitney (G1) at Saratoga back on August 3. He has been the No. 1 horse for the entire duration, or 12 weeks, of the Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings. 

Godolphin’s Thunder Snow (IRE) (165 votes), two-time winner of the Dubai World Cup (G1), is in the second spot, with China Horse ClubInternational WinStar Farm and Head of Plains Partners 5-year-old Yoshida (JPN) (88 votes) in third. 

In fifth place is Gary and Mary West’s Haskell Invitation (G1) winner Maximum Security (112 votes), while Hronis Racing’s 4-year-old TVG Pacific Classic (G1) winner Higher Power (88 votes) is in sixth. 

The 4-year-old Vino Rosso (79 votes) out of Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable, remains in the seventh spot. He was the third-place finisher in the Whitney. 

Gary and Mary West’s Game Winner (66 votes) is in the eight spot. He was the winner of the 2018 Breeders; Cup Juvenile (G1).

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

The tenth spot is held by Hronis Racing’s 6-year-old Sant Anita Handicap (G1) sinner Gift Box (46 votes). He fell one position since the last rankings. 

The Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankings

The Breeders’ Cup Classic Rankins is a weekly rating of the top 10 horses who are contending for the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita Park on November 2. The horses who make it in are selected by a panel of leading Thoroughbred racing media, members of the Breeders’ Cup Racing Directors/Secretaries Panel, and horseplayers. The rankings get announced each week until Oct.15, and all information regarding the rankings and voting members can be found on the Breeders’ Cup website. 

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

While the rankings give a good idea about the upcoming field for the race, they have no official bearing, qualification, or selection into the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic to be run on November 2.


1 McKinzie

2 Thunder Snow (IRE)

3 Yoshida (JPN)

4 Code of Honor

5 Maximum Security

6 Higher Power

7 Vino Rosso

8 Game Winner

9 Catholic Boy

10 Gift Box