Horse of the Year candidate Bricks and Mortar remains the one to beat in next Saturday’s Arlington Million (G1). That long-range forecast was reinforced by the pre-entries submitted Friday for all three Grade 1s on Million Day. The anchor of a formidable Arlington team for trainer Chad Brown, Bricks and Mortar is joined by stablemate Robert Bruce, the defending Million champion. Robert Bruce, who topped the Brown exacta a year ago, aims to become the first back-to-back Million winner. But the pecking order is established after Bricks and Mortar defeated Robert Bruce in the Manhattan H. (G1) on Belmont Day, extending his winning streak to five. Bricks and Mortar’s rise to the top began in the inaugural Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1) at Gulfstream Park, where he comfortably dispatched Aidan O’Brien’s Magic Wand. A rematch could be in the offing as the Ballydoyle filly is pre-entered in the Million, with a cross-entry in the $600,000 Beverly D. (G1). O’Brien also has Hunting Horn earmarked for the Million. The presumptive pacemaker almost stole the May 11 Man o’ War (G1) in their last stateside trip, until swamped late in fourth. In their latest, the stablemates were predictably no match for Enable and Crystal Ocean in the July 27 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth (G1) at Ascot, but Hunting Horn fared better in fifth as Magic Wand was a tailed-off last. The Million’s other international pre-entries are the Fabrice Chappet-trained Intellogent, the 2018 Prix Jean Prat (G1) winner who was most recently fourth in the Prix d’Ispahan (G1), and English handicapper Pivoine from the Andrew Balding yard. We’ll dive into the internationals in next week’s scouting reports. The respective top three from the Arlington H. (G3) on Million Preview Day – course record-setter Bandua and rallying place-getters The Great Day and Captivating Moon – are slated to renew rivalry in the track’s signature event. Rounding out the 10-horse list is Catcho En Die, who was promoted to third in last year’s Million but has since gone off form. *** The 1 1/4-mile Arlington Million serves as a “Win and You’re In” for the Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1), so it’s fitting that its sister race, the 1 3/16-mile Beverly D., is likewise part of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge series for the Filly & Mare Turf (G1). Brown again has the one to beat in reigning champion Sistercharlie, who bids to make history as the first two-time Beverly D. winner. Only the second Beverly D. heroine to capture the Filly & Mare Turf (after Dank in 2013), Sistercharlie arrives off a repeat score in the Diana (G1). The Eclipse Award winner brings along pacemaker Thais, who held third in last year’s Beverly D. to round out a Brown trifecta. Brown’s Competitionofideas, enduring seconditis after a trio of near-misses, will also appreciate a dedicated front runner. O’Brien, yet to win the Beverly D., calls upon dual classic-placed Fleeting as well as the cross-entered Magic Wand. Fleeting has to buck history as just one sophomore filly has managed to beat her elders here, Euro Charline (2014), but she sports placings in the Oaks (G1), Ribblesdale (G2) at Royal Ascot, and most recently the Irish Oaks (G1). British trainer William Haggas has the other international pre-entrant, Awesometank, a multiple Group 3-placed stakes winner who exits a seventh versus males in Ascot’s Summer Mile (G2). Ironically, one of her placings came in last September’s Prix Bertrand de Tarragon (G3) to My Sister Nat, a younger half-sibling to Sistercharlie. The only domestic runners willing to brave the Brown battalion are a pair of also-rans from the course-and-distance Modesty (G3), Remember Daisy and Oh So Terrible. Remember Daisy deserves extra credit for her fourth-place effort, considering she stumbled at the break and found herself out of position in a tactical race. *** Brown and O’Brien will square off in the $500,000 Secretariat (G1) as well, over its newly shortened distance of one mile. O’Brien has had greater success in the three-year-old feature, scoring four victories in its former guise as a 1 1/4-mile test. Compare that tally to his *two in the Million (with an asterisk since Powerscourt was disqualified in 2004, or else O’Brien would have had three) and his shut-out in the Beverly D. In contrast, Brown has captured the Secretariat just once, compared to three Millions and five runnings of the Beverly D. (including the past four in a row). The reconfiguration might enhance his Secretariat prospects. Brown’s Fog of War and Valid Point bring different profiles. Fog of War shaped as a budding star when landing the 2018 Summer (G1), only to miss the rest of his juvenile campaign with an injury. The War Front colt could be rounding back into top form in this third start off the layoff. Valid Point, unraced at two, has won both of his outings this term to stamp himself a threat in his stakes debut. O’Brien has pre-entered Never No More, last seen upending a less-than-cranked Madhmoon in Leopardstown’s 2000 Guineas Trial back on April 6, and the well-traveled Van Beethoven, who would get some class relief following unplaced efforts in a pair of mile classics and the St James’s Palace (G1). American Derby (G3) hero Faraway Kitten, and the dead-heat runners-up The Last Zip and Crafty Daddy, are on course for a rematch. Woodhaven S. winner Clint Maroon, fourth in the Manila (where Fog of War was runner-up), makes his first start for Wayne Catalano. Godolphin’s course-and-distance allowance winner Journeyman, a son of Animal Kingdom and Tout Charmant; Churchill Downs allowance romper Ry’s the Guy; and Bizzee Channel, second to Faraway Kitten in the Mystic Lake Derby two back, complete the 11 pre-entries. The fields for the Arlington Million, Beverly D., and Secretariat will be finalized on Tuesday.