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Fri 24/02/2023 - 07:15 EST

Saudi Cup 2023 Picks: Country Grammer Can Bring Title Back to United States

Coming up Saturday, February 25 at King Abdulaziz Racecourse in Riyadh is not only the richest horse race of the year but one of the best betting horse races as well: the $20 million Saudi Cup (G1)! The race covers 1,800 meters (about 1 ⅛ miles) over the dirt, and it always draws a mixture of top dirt horses and classy turf horses willing to try a different surface for a massive payday.

The Saudi Cup is one of the newest traditions in horse racing: the first edition was run in 2020 and it only earned international Group 1 status in 2022. However, it has already proven itself an excellent betting race: with winners from three different countries in its first three years, including massive longshot local Emblem Road in 2022, betting it can lead to a huge score!

Country Grammer To win the Saudi Cup

Who will win the 2023 Saudi Cup? Keep reading to find out, and to find out the best places to bet the Saudi Cup online!

Betting the 2023 Saudi Cup Online

Make sure to maximize your profits on the race by betting online with a trusted online racebook! There are many options for betting on racing and sports online, but our wagering experts can help you select the best site with the best features for the way you like to bet. Visit our online racebook reviews now, and make a quick and confident decision!

All of our expert-recommended racebooks give you what you need for a great betting experience: real Las Vegas odds, trusted money management, and a smooth user interface. Each one also offers racebook bonuses you won’t find at the track such as deposit and sign-up incentives, referral benefits, and rebates just for betting the races!

Take a few minutes now to find out which one fits your betting style the best, and get ready to enjoy hundreds or even thousands of dollars in cash or free bets to build your bankroll!

The Best Online Racebooks

These are the best online racebooks for playing the 2023 Saudi Cup:

RankBonusReviewLink to site

Saudi Cup Handicapping

With your online betting account set up, it is time to meet the field for the 2023 Saudi Cup and start deciding which ones to build your bets around!

Saudi Cup 2023 Field

This is the official field for the 2023 Saudi Cup including post positions, trainers, and jockeys:

  1. Panthalassa (Yoshito Yahagi / Yutaka Yoshida) - Betting Number 7
  2. Taiba (Bob Baffert / Mike Smith) - Betting Number 10
  3. Crown Pride (Koichi Shintani / Damian Lane) - Betting Number 3
  4. Scotland Yard (Moutaib Almulawah / Victor Gutierrez) - Betting Number 9
  5. Sunset Flash (Naif Almandeel / Aseel Alarhani) - Betting Number 13
  6. Jun Light Bolt (Yasuo Tomomichi / Ryan Moore) - Betting Number 6
  7. Remorse (Bhupat Seemar / Tadhg O’Shea) - Betting Number 8
  8. Emblem Road (Moutaib Almulawah / Alexis Moreno) - Betting Number 4
  9. Vin de Garde (Hideaki Fujiwara / Mickael Barzalona) - Betting Number 11
  10. Country Grammer (Bob Baffert / Frankie Dettori) - Betting Number 2
  11. Lagertha Rhyme (Naif Almandeel / Ricardo Ferreira) - Betting Number 12
  12. Geoglyph (Tetsuya Kimura / Christophe Lemaire) - Betting Number 5
  13. Cafe Pharoah (Noriyuki Hori / Joao Moreira) - Betting Number 1

Keep in mind that the betting numbers and post positions in Saudi Arabia differ; this is unlike in North America, but common in the rest of the world.

Keep in mind that any morning line issued by the track may be a guide toward which horses are expected to take money, but you are not guaranteed those odds if you bet the race at a track or OTB. Your best bet is to play the race at an online racebook. Since online racebooks offer fixed-odds wagering on major races, you can lock in the best odds right when you bet!

These are the odds on horses at the top of the Saudi Cup market at recommended online racebooks:

Saudi Cup Favorites

The favorites in the Saudi Cup are the two American shippers for trainer Bob Baffert. Country Grammer is likely to be the longer price of the two but also the more appealing. He has already proven he can handle the King Abdulaziz dirt, his midpack style suits the race and the way the course plays, and he should be fitter this time than last year, when he finished second after a long layoff.

Country Grammer To win the Saudi Cup

Taiba, on the other hand, ships internationally for the first time and has limited experience against older horses. As a horse who will be on or near the lead, he will also have a difficult time having to face Crown Pride, who proved in the Kentucky Derby last year that he has enough early speed to rival Americans. He could hit the exotics but is an underlay on top.

Jun Light Bolt also shapes as an underlay. The shortest price of the Japanese contingent off of his Champions Cup (G1) win over Crown Price, he does carry the most dirt class of the Japanese runners. But, Japanese dirt form tends to disappoint enough in large international races that he is difficult to endorse as one of the shorter prices in the field.

Saudi Cup Exotics Horses

In 2022 local Emblem Road upset the race; he comes in with less form than last year, but there are still other locals who are very appealing. Top among them is Lagertha Rhyme, who has a very smart late kick and should be perfectly spotted to turn the tables on Sunset Flash with the extra 200m in distance. This consistent horse has found the right spot, and should figure at huge odds.

Lagertha Rhyme To win the Saudi Cup

Scotland Yard also figures. He started his career in the United States, but has found his stride in Saudi Arabia where he has won his last three straight. With tactical speed he can get the jump on the real closers, and the turn back from 2,000 meters (where he won impressively last out) to 1,800 meters should still be right in his sweet spot of distance.

Geoglyph, going first time dirt, is the most interesting of the Japanese contingent. Yes, this looks like an attempt at a career reboot, but he will be the right price to bet that it may work. He has already proven that he has enough stamina in his turf races, and being by Drefong with some other dirt horses underneath, the biggest surprise is that he hasn’t tried it sooner.

2023 Saudi Cup Free Picks

You know the best online racebooks for playing the Saudi Cup, and you have gotten to know the field. There is one thing left to do: place your bet!

These are the best bets for Saturday’s 2023 Saudi Cup:

  • $20 to win - #2 Country Grammer
  • $10 each-way - #12 Lagertha Rhyme
  • $1 exacta key - #2 Country Grammer with #9 Scotland Yard, #12 Lagertha Rhyme
  • $0.50 trifecta key - #2 Country Grammer with #5 Geoglyph, #9 Scotland Yard, #12 Lagertha Rhyme
  • $0.20 superfecta key - #2 Country Grammer with #5 Geoglyph, #9 Scotland Yard, #10 Taiba, #12 Lagertha Rhyme

Saudi Cup Post Time

Post time for the 2023 Saudi Cup is scheduled for 8:35 pm Arabian Standard Time, or 12:35 pm Eastern, on Saturday, February 25.  It is scheduled as the 8th and final race on King Abdulaziz’s Saturday card.