For bettors, the beautiful thing about the 2012 Breeders' Cup is that it comes with a seemingly never-ending slew of races to wager on.
Over the course of two days, Nov. 2 and Nov. 3, 15 races will take place at Santa Anita Park. That abundance of races, while undoubtedly captivating, will make it hard for bettors to make informed choices.
And when uninformed, people tend to stick to the favorites, hoping that the oddsmakers made the right calls. Well, as anyone who follows horse racing knows, going with the favorite on a consistent basis is a one-way ticket to leaving the track empty-handed.
While some morning-line studs will prevail quite easily, there are others that face a field full of top-notch horses that could be better options.
With that in mind, here are a few favorites you should avoid betting on this weekend.
Sky Lantern (5/2 in Juvenile Fillies Turf)
One of the heavier favorites coming into this weekend's slate of races, Sky Lantern is one of the better fillies in recent memory.
In her four career races, she's finished no lower than second place and ran a lightning-quick time of 1:25.14 at the Moyglare Stud Stakes in her last race.
Still, in horse racing there are no guarantees, and Sky Lantern faces a bevy of underrated juveniles on Friday. Obviously the top challenger is Spring Venture, but the field also includes Watsdachances and Flotilla, both of whom have been forces in their young careers.
On the dark horse side of things, let's also not forget Flashy Ways, who is undefeated and is no stranger to stunning heavy favorites.
At 5/2 odds, I'd rather take my chances with any of those fillies over Sky Lantern at this juncture.
Dundonnell (3/1 in Juvenile Turf)
Trained by Roger Charlton and with a fantastic pedigree, Dundonnell's career is off to a rousing start though four races.
The two-year-old colt has finished in the money in each of his races, all of which have come since July. Ridden by James Doyle, Dundonnell has also won two of those races and done so in fine form.
Nonetheless, he faces perhaps the toughest field outside of the Breeders' Cup Classic in 2012. In fact, this is a field where Lines of Battle, my personal pick, is a bargain as a 14/1 underdog for Saturday's race.
Even if I'm not correct, Artigiano at the No. 2 post and Noble Tune at the No. 9 post are both fantastic options that should be considered.
Obviously, Dundonnell is a horse that comes into this weekend with a lot of deserved hype. Unfortunately, the field is simply too packed for me to feel comfortable recommending him.
St. Nicholas Abbey (3/1 in Turf)
While picking against Dundonnell is a risky move, going against St. Nicholas Abbey feels like one of the easier bets of the weekend.
Though St. Nicholas Abbey comes into Saturday's turf event as the defending champion and winner of the last two Coronation Cups, that win in June was his last. In four races since, the 4-year-old colt has finished no higher than third and finished 11th in his last race at Longchamp.
In a field that includes Shareta and Point of Entry (a co-favorite at 3/1), there is little reason to think St. Nicholas Abbey will get out of his funk.
Aiden O'Brien has done wonders in the past, but it seems like this colt has come back to the pack.