* The chatter hasn’t died down nearly 48 hours since Big Brown’s troubled trip. Tim Layden has an excellent column today regarding five unanswered questions after Big Brown’s loss.
* Thought on this end is that Desormeaux rode an awful race. He exerted too much energy from the horse getting him to the outside after being boxed in and didn’t follow the trainer’s directions to get to the lead. He tried to dictate the race instead of letting the race come to him and react accordingly. His horse became “confused” and didn’t fire when asked, and then gave up.
* Da’Tara’s pedigree analysis shows that he is following his sire Tiznow’s path as a late bloomer, who improved considerably through the course of his three year old season. After three crops of 3yo’s Tiznow now has 12 stakes winners, including G1 winners Folklore, Colonel John and Tough Tiz’s Sis and graded winners Bear Now, Tizdejavu, Slew’s Tizzy, Well Armed and Tiz Wonderful. Of course, Tiznow won two Breeders’ Cup Classics. Da'Tara's dam, Torchera, was a three-time winner and twice stakes-placed in California-bred restricted company.
* For more in-depth pedigree analysis see Alfred Vanderbilt’s hilarious blog at The Rail, who attempts to delve into the Native Dancer line, the "Gray Ghost of Sagamore", who was owned and bred by his father. Interesting side note that every Belmont horse in the race on Saturday traces back to the Ghost.
* With all due respect to the tradition of the Triple Crown, the biggest change I would suggest in the current setup is the spacing between the races. Why not the first Saturdays in May, June and July giving the horses ample time to recover from minor injuries and the like? It’s just too darn difficult to run three classics in five weeks in today's environment. I don’t think they should change the distances or venues, just the timing.
* Bo Derek’s derby horse was Tale of Ekati, not sure there’s any other reason why she was in that horse’s stall before the race on Saturday.
* Never schedule an 8 ½ hour train ride when thunderstorms are threatening. A tree fell on the tracks somewhere around Poughkeepsie, delaying our return trip for an hour or two.
* Always bet $2 on the long shot in the classics, when they happen to come in you can confidently respond when asked how you did…“yeah, I had that.” Actually I read somewhere if you played $2 on every long shot over 50-1 on Breeders Cup Day, you typically come out ahead. Go figure.
* Next year I’ll buy my LIRR tickets on Friday night before the race, the lines were a zoo at Penn Station, even though the comedy factor was high. An elderly lady in front of me, commenting on the group of girls buying their tickets one by one instead of one punching it in for all of them and getting reimbursed later (thus keeping the line moving)… “and they’re not even blonde!”
* 43 days to Tom Durkin leading the crowd in unison: “And they’re off at Saratoga!”
* Kudos to my boys at Bella Cavello Stables, as two of their horses hit the board. Coal Valley ($8.20) won a $10K claimer on Thursday at Pimlico and M.E.’s Smile (last seen winning at Atlantic City in April) took second in the 2nd at Mountaineer on Saturday. Their ace mare La Chica Rica scratched out of the 4th at Mountaineer, a $41K turf sprint. They send out Gregson (6th at Monmouth) and Generalissimo (7th at Colonial Downs) on Wednesday. Good luck, gents.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008