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  #1  
Old May 22nd, 2011, 7:03 pm
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Horse Racing

Horse racing has been one of my passions for many years. I noticed there isn't a thread that I could find to discuss the Sport of Kings here. So many great four-legged athletes and famous riders, trainers, and owners have graced race tracks around the world since the first two owners decided to see who had the fastest horse. I'm hoping there are enough other railbirds out there that we can get some really good discussions and reminicing going here.

This thread is for the discussion of racing: Past, present, future. It's for people who know who Carry Back is as well as Secretariat. Or, for people who don't know one end of a horse from the other and just want to read about really amazing animals and the people who loved and cared for them.

To get it started, here are a few questions:

* Who do you think are the top 10 race horses of all time? Let's break this down by country, as the racing surfaces in each country vary so much, as do the length of the races, weight carried, etc. So, if you would, please list the country after the name of the horse.

* Who is you personal favorite race horse (you can have more than one, but please don't list more than five)?

* Who is your favorite jockey? (same as above)

* Favorite trainer? (Ditto)

* Favorite owners/breeders/stables/farms? (as above)

* What is your favorite race track?

* Favorite horse race?

* What race do you think tests a horses true merit the most?

* What do you think of current thoroughbreds and the trend to breed horses for the "classic" distance of 1 1/4 miles?

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ ++++++++

So, I'll get started:

* Who do you think are the top 10 race horses of all time? Let's break this down by country, as the racing surfaces in each country vary so much, as do the length of the races, weight carried, etc. So, if you would, please list the country after the name of the horse.

Not necessarily in order of "greatness" -

Man O' War - US
Seabiscuit - US
Kelso - US
Secretariat - US
Bold Ruler - US
Phar Lap - Australia
Red Rum - Great Britain
Citation - US
John Henry - US
Cigar - US

* Who is you personal favorite race horse (you can have more than one, but please don't list more than five)?

Ruffian, Secretariat, Man O' War, Kelso, Northern Dancer

* Who is your favorite jockey? (same as above)

1) Bill Hartack
2) Willie Shoemaker
3) Eddie Arcaro
4) Calvin Borel
5) John Velazquez

* Favorite trainer? (Ditto)

Bob Baffert, Graham Motion, Ben Jones, Tom Smith, Lucien Laurin

* Favorite owners/breeders/stables/farms? (as above)

Spendthrift Farms, Calumet Farms, Bohemia Stables/Mrs. Richard duPont, Claiborne Farms, Capt. Harry Guggenheim

* What is your favorite race track?

Laurel Park, Laurel, MD (I grew up there so it's a sentimental favorite,).

* Favorite horse race?

The Washington, DC International, until it was discontinued. Now, the Preakness (because it's held in Maryland) followed closely by the Kentucky Derby.

* What race do you think tests a horses "true merit" the most?

It used to be the Jockey Club Gold Cup at 2 miles. But, then it was cut back to 1 1/2 miles, now it's only 1 1/4 miles, so has no more challenge than any of the other "classic distance" races, like the Kentucky Derby. Now, I'd say it's the Belmont Stakes, if the horse that wins it has run in the other Triple Crown races and finished in the top 5 finishers. Even the Breeder's Cup events don't include races over 1 1/4 miles.

* What do you think of current thoroughbreds and the trend to breed horses for the "classic" distance of 1 1/4 miles?

I think it's a shame what's being done with the modern throrughbred. The rate of break downs in top class race horses nowadays is terrible. You can hardly watch a full card on a big race day without having at least one horse break down. That used to be a major rarity.

I also don't approve of the widespread use of either pain killers or performance enhancing medications in horse racing. If a horse isn't fit to run without drugs it shouldn't be running.


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  #2  
Old May 23rd, 2011, 5:25 am
SadiraSnape  Female.gif SadiraSnape is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Oh goody, my favorite sport with my favorite animals!!

* Who do you think are the top 10 race horses of all time?

Man O' War (US)

Seabiscuit (US)

War Admiral (US)

Phar Lap (Aus)

Eclipse (UK)

Secretariat (US)

Ruffian (US)

Exterminator (US)

Bold Ruler (US)

Affirmed (US) -- the last Triple Crown Winner, 1978

* Who is your personal favorite race horse (you can have more than one, but please don't list more than five)?

Man O' War, and the rest nowhere!

* Who is your favorite jockey? (same as above)

Angel Cordero, Jr., Bill Hartack, Willie Shoemaker, Calvin Borel, Edgar Prado

* Favorite trainer? (Ditto)

Sunny Jim Fitzsimmons, Lucien Laurin, Ansel Williamson, D. Wayne Lukas, Laz Barrera

* Favorite owners/breeders/stables/farms? (as above)

Samuel D. Riddle, Claiborne, Calumet, Ocala Stud, Country Life

* What is your favorite race track?

Churchill Downs, without a doubt

* Favorite horse race?

Kentucky Derby

* What race do you think tests a horses true merit the most?

The Belmont -- it's longer, it comes at the end of the Triple Crown series, and it's weather is more challenging. The winner has to be in top form.

* What do you think of current thoroughbreds and the trend to breed horses for the "classic" distance of 1 1/4 miles?

I think current TB's are a pale shadow of their ancestors. From strong, well-built animals with the endurance to run races in heats over long distances, that rarely broke down, we now have delicate, slim-legged fragile creatures that are so highly inbred crossing out is almost impossible. Most are bleeders, and breaking down on the track is a common occurrence rather than the awful rarity it used to be.

If a horse can't run further than 1 1/4 miles, then the days of the Triple Crown are done, since it's 1 1/2 miles. A Thoroughbred should be able to run at least 1 1/2 miles -- bring back the endurance of the original horse! I think outcrosses to Arabians should be allowed again; open the Stud Book. The breed needs some outside blood to rejuvenate it.

And yes, if a horse can't run without drugs, it shouldn't run. Horses that need Lasix to shrink the capillaries so they don't have nosebleeds after a race, legal painkillers so they can run through the pain, or legal calming agents so they don't leave their races in the starting gate have no business running.


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  #3  
Old May 23rd, 2011, 7:34 am
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Re: Horse Racing

I'm kind of surprised at how many we agreed on. Man O'War, in my book, is probably one of the best thoroughbreds to step foot on a track. He didn't run in the Derby because his owner thought it too early in the year for a three year old to be carrying that kind of weight for that distance. Of course, there wasn't any Triple Crown at that time, even though Sir Barton had won the three races that currently comprise it.

I realize that racing is a business, but, when the sport gets lost and the business takes over, the sport is going to eventually be nothing. You're right about the in-breeding. Go back two or three generations and you're going to find sire's names all over the place. It seems odd, since there are about three times the number of thoroughbreds born no that at the time Citation was born.

Do you remember Carryback, Bald Eagle (I'm sure you remember Kelso)?

And talk about sleeze. The amazing Alydar, who ran second to Affirmed in all three Triple Crown races and lost only by a half a length or less in each, was killed so his owners could collect the insurance money. They tried to hide it, but it was finally discovered and I think they are either doing jail time or already did it. How can anyone do that to such a beautiful animal.?


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  #4  
Old May 23rd, 2011, 3:59 pm
SadiraSnape  Female.gif SadiraSnape is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

I just do remember Carry Back and Kelso. My mother had me watching the Triple Crown races when I was just a wee thing. I can remember getting on my rocking horse for each race, and I was riding the one we were pulling for.

The first horse I really remember clearly is Northern Dancer. I remember that Kentucky Derby very well.

The Alydar story is so sad. Maybe even sadder are the good racehorses that end up in slaughterhouses -- I can't think of the number of stakes winners and at least one Derby winner (Ferdinand) who've gone that way. It's true, the business has overtaken the sport, in fact the breed itself.


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  #5  
Old May 23rd, 2011, 5:49 pm
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Re: Horse Racing

Totally ignorant of horse racing here, but curious.

Have the average finish times for the 1 1/4 mile distance decreased in recent times? (As someone with a stats background, I'm wondering what perverse incentive is causing the poor breeding decisions...) It would seem, regardless, that preventing horses who must take drugs in order to perform in a race, from racing until their course of treatment is over, would help with the problem, since it would provide an incentive to breeders to breed horses whose general health is good, to lessen the time they spend being ineligible to race. It would also seem to be consistent "philosophically" with some of the other rules (like the ban on artificial aids to reproduction for thoroughbreds).


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  #6  
Old May 23rd, 2011, 8:55 pm
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Re: Horse Racing

Excellent points, arithmancer.

Northern Dancer set a record for the Kentucky Derby in 1964 of 2:00 flat for 1 1/4 miles.

That wasn't broken for almost 10 years until 1973 by Secretariat with a time of 1:59 2/5.

Monarchos came close in 2001 with 1:59.97, only the second time it had been run
under 2:00 - a note here, Monarchos dam (mother) was bred in Argentina...new blood.

Except for Monarchos, since Secretariate the times hover from the 2:01's all the way up to 2:05! There were horses who finished in the field when Secretariat won who ran faster than 2:05!.

The Triple Crown races have become so popular and such a racing icon that they are the benchmark for everything now. They used to be a nice stop on the way to winning Horse of the Year. But, anymore, the Derby winner is usually Horse of the Year, especially if s/he can pick up another win or two afterwards. Values, especially stud fess, depend on whether you have at least one Triple Crown race under your belt. The more, the better.

By reducing the distances that the horses are running nowadays (like the Jockey Club Gold Cup, which used to be 2 miles and is now down to 1 1/4 miles) they are breeding the stamina, strength and muscle structure (IMO) out of them. Without the strong muscles in their legs, their legs are weak and they break down...a lot. As Sadira was saying, you hardly ever saw a horse with what was considered a "good pedigree" break down. It was usually an accident of some type, hitting the gate, getting kicked by another horse in the race, or a bad surface on a track that caused that kind of thing. Horses would get bowed tendons (something like a sprain) and, after several months off and the proper treatment, they usually were able to return to racing. These horses today don't bother with that, they just break their legs or bones in their feet or whatever. And, there's a beautiful animal, with nothing else wrong with him/her, who has to be euthanized because it is too difficult to immobilize an animal that size.

I watch the Breeders' Cup each year, which is a series of races for horses running different distances, from the 5-furlong to the Breeders' Cup Marathon at 1 3/4 miles. The Marathon is on the "minor" card, which is run the Friday before the "big" races, as are all of the filly and mare races. While a couple of them carry $2 million purses, they are reduced to the "minor" card. The Marathon only carries a $500,000 purse. That sounds like a lot, but compared to the purses for the chief races, which are held on Breeders' Cup Day, it's not. The "BIG" races are:

Breeders' Cup Sprint at 6 furlongs for 3 Year Olds & Up $2 Million
Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint at 5 Furlongs for 3 Year Olds & Up $1 Million
Breeders' Cup Juvenile at 1 1/16 miles 2 Year Old Colts & Geldings (IMO) too far to be running 2 year olds in November $2 million
Breeders' Cup Mile 1 mile (Turf) 3 Year Olds & Up $2 Million
Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile 1 Mile 3 Year Olds & Up $2 Million
Breeders' Cup Turf 1 1/2 miles (Turf) 3 Year Olds & Up $3 Million
Breeders' Cup Classic 1 1/4 miles 3 Year Olds & Up $5 Million

So you can see where the big purse money is concentrated, i.e. the emphasis on breeding horses for those distances.

In the last five years of watching the Breeders Cup Saturday card I've see at least one horse break down every year except last year.

This is what Sadira and I are talking about with the inbreeding and breeding for short distances, and not even for speed, because even a good sprinter can go a mile in a slow time.

I'll let Sadira explain about the drugs given to horses who consistantly have nose bleeds, and some of the meds used to increase performance and such...including steroids.


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  #7  
Old May 23rd, 2011, 10:29 pm
SadiraSnape  Female.gif SadiraSnape is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Regarding the inbreeding, it's due to the use of "popular" stallions, which translates into "ones who won prestigious races and/or won a lot of money" or became Horse of the Year or Hall of Famers. A stallion can have many more foals in a given year, depending on how he's being managed, than a mare can (generally one, sometimes two if she has twins, a rare and not that wonderful occurrence). Over time, you end up with more horses being half-siblings by this stallion than there are (relatively) unrelated horses.

It's also due to breeding for speed, rather than soundness. So you end up with a bunch of fast horses whose bodies aren't built for the speed they have, and they literally run themselves to death. Add to that running young horses (2 year olds, who are essentially still babies) at top speed over longer and longer distances, on these unsound bodies, and you have more health issues to address in order to get your money back out.

If breeders would make a study of pedigrees and plan their matings better, rather than breeding inbred to inbred, you could eventually breed out most of the issues that have been introduced. But no, it's about breeding to the sexy stallion of the year -- who cares if he's a full brother to the mare you want to send? And their close ancestors were half-sibs, or aunt/uncle x nephew/niece crosses? Or a grandsire is repeated over and over?

It's almost criminal.


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  #8  
Old May 24th, 2011, 4:46 am
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Re: Horse Racing

It use to be "Breed the best to the best and hope for the best." Now, it's breed the most famous to the most famous and hope for something that can make it through their third year." If a male horse isn't a gelding and has won one or two prestegious races (the number of which are growing by leaps and bounds, as well), chances are he isn't going to run after his third year. Too much risk on the track, too much money being lost in the breeding shed.

I was looking at the Jockey Club stats the other day and some of those stallions are cover 100+ mares a year. That's ludicrous. If a stallion covers more than 25-30 mares a year, that's plenty. That keeps there from being too many of that stallion's offspring produced and also keeps the stallion healthier.

If the Jockey Club would limit the number of mares that could be covered by a stallion each year it would certainly shuffle the deck. The breeders would have to carefully select the mares because they'll want the best foals produced. The others would have to find another stallion...possibly one not directly related to the mare. I think they should also ban breeding with the same bloodline within the past four generations or, maybe more. It's just ridiculous, and, as you said, almost criminal.

The big thing when I was around the track was Butazolidin (bute) for "inflamations." Some of the cheaper horses at the half-mile tracks should have never been allowed to set foot on the track. They were running them sore and the horses could have any number of things wrong with them and no one could tell because of the pain killers. Fortunately, they can't use that anymore.

Lasix is almost as bad nowadays. If horses were properly trained to build up their lung capacity I don't think they'd bleed nearly as much. I like the European training methods of just easily galloping the horses daily to build up their muscles and their lung capacity. Galloping like that is natural. If I were an owner or breeder I'd build a European style training facility, with areas just for galloping over the countryside.


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  #9  
Old June 2nd, 2011, 4:05 pm
SadiraSnape  Female.gif SadiraSnape is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Belmont Stakes on June 11! Who do you think will take it?


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Old June 2nd, 2011, 5:11 pm
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Re: Horse Racing

Quote:
Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
The Alydar story is so sad. Maybe even sadder are the good racehorses that end up in slaughterhouses -- I can't think of the number of stakes winners and at least one Derby winner (Ferdinand) who've gone that way. It's true, the business has overtaken the sport, in fact the breed itself.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SadiraSnape View Post
It's also due to breeding for speed, rather than soundness. So you end up with a bunch of fast horses whose bodies aren't built for the speed they have, and they literally run themselves to death. Add to that running young horses (2 year olds, who are essentially still babies) at top speed over longer and longer distances, on these unsound bodies, and you have more health issues to address in order to get your money back out.
All reasons why I consider horse racing to be fundamentally immoral (not a popular opinion here I know, but there you have it).

All professional sports put business before sport, it's the nature of the beast. The difference is that in sports where the burden is on human athletes, they have a choice.


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  #11  
Old June 2nd, 2011, 6:09 pm
SadiraSnape  Female.gif SadiraSnape is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Horse racing as it happens now is, indeed, immoral. A beautiful breed of horse that loves to run has been ruined in the name of faster times over shorter distances. And running 2 year olds as hard and as much as they're run now -- that's especially heinous to me.

Horse racing is something horses do themselves, at liberty. They will suddenly take it in their heads to literally race each other across a pasture -- I've spent many pleasant days watching my own run. So I don't have an issue with horse racing in its pure form, but this travesty that happens now...

I feel the same way about gaited horses being forced into extremes -- they have a natural gait that is beautiful and pure. There is no reason to cut them, stack their shoes, break their tails, or do any of the other horrific things that are done to make them "flashier".

Even draft horses -- they have a beautiful high action trot naturally, and big wonderful feet. There's no reason to pad and grow out those feet or weight the shoes so they "enhance" the action (and tear muscles and tendons).


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  #12  
Old June 4th, 2011, 3:01 pm
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Re: Horse Racing

It's like everything else, once the dollar signs start flashing, all thought for the "athlete" human or animal, goes out the window.

I love horseracing, as it once was. But, I'm not sure it will ever recover from what's happening now. They keep saying the Jockey Club is going to step in and do this and that. Until they stop allowing many of the practices going on today they're never going to change anything.

I was really impressed with Animal Kingdom's owner and trainer. Both are "old school," and put the horse first.

One of my kids took riding lessons at a stable that showed American Saddle Horses. They had several that were gorgeous. He took his lessons on a pony, at first, then, after a year, graduated to one of the larger horses. I'd never been around show horses that much, at least not "professional" ones. Just mostly the local ones. But, these people competed nationally and even though they didn't break the horses' tails (that I'd seen before in several "horsey" magazines) they did stack their shoes to enhance their gait and make them pick their feet up higher. It looked painful the way their legs were and, so unnatural. It looked to me like a woman wearing 4" heels all the time or something. If there had been another stable in the area giving lessons I'd have taken my son there. But, he wanted to learn to ride so much. He had a natural seat and was very good. Unfortunately, when he finally got the place he wanted and was planning on getting a horse so he could teach his daughter to ride, he passed away suddenly before he was able to do that.

I remember a big scandal back in the 60's where some owners were actually cutting the horses feet and putting stuff in there to make them hurt so the horses would have more snap to their gait...in hurt so bad to put their feet on the ground so they'd pick them up more gingerly and it made their gait "prettier." They were covering the cuts with those stupid "bell boots," which I think look hideous, and, once a couple of them were caught, there was a huge uproar and investigation and a lot of stables were banned from competing.

(Speaking of show horses: Sadira, do you remember Snowman? Wasn't he one of the most magnificent jumpers ever? They used to have the Wahington DC International Horse Show the week beore the International race at Laurel. It was like a double whammy for horse lovers. Snowman competed there several times, but, I don't think that was where he set his jumping record. I think it was New York, probably the Madison Square Garden one.)

As for the Belmont. I think I'll go with Animal Kingdom. I just think he got too far behind in the Preakness and, even though 1/16th of a mile doesn't seem like a lot, it is enough to lose a race if you're not making your move at the right time. I think he's got the speed, and, more important, the stamina, to go 1 1/2 miles, quiet a feat for a thoroughbred these days.

You were talking about not running two-year-olds as early and as much. That's why Man o' War didn't win the Triple Crown (at least as far as I'm concerned) because he didn't compete in the Derby since Samuel D. Riddle didn't think three-year-olds should run a mile and a quarter that early in the year. Some of them don't actually turn three until after the Derby, he was probably right.

Man o' War


That would be another way to try to strengthen the breed...limit the breeding season to January and February. Any horses born after the last day of February wouldn't be able to be registered and race. But, then, if some of them have a mare due and she doesn't look like she's going to foal in time you'd be having induced labor and c-sections for horses...too many people in it who just love the money and not the sport or, escpeially the horses.

Wab, I don't have a problem with your views on horseracing. I feel the same way about racing greyhounds. Horses, as Sadira says, naturally want to run and they will compete with each other on their own. They'll run against each other out in an open field just to see who can win. They have a sense of copmetition. I don't see dogs doing that. But, you're right about the money aspect and when some people see money, all common sense and caring is disregarded, no matter what the sport.


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I held you in my arms, although I knew that death
Had already taken you. I held you close, hoping for a faint heartbeat or breath
To prove me wrong.
But, you were still, and could not hear or see
My grief, my tears, my heartbreak knowing that the rest of my life would be
Spent without you.
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  #13  
Old June 12th, 2011, 4:36 am
SadiraSnape  Female.gif SadiraSnape is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Well, this year's Triple Crown was a 3 way split -- Animal Kingdom in the Derby, Shackleford by sheer luck in the Preakness, and Ruler On Ice in the Belmont.

It was a filthy track today, muddy and sloppy from rain, and it was a filthy start. Animal Kingdom clipped heels with Mucho Macho Man, who had been crowded and bumped by Isn't He Perfect, and AK almost went down. His jock, John Velazquez, lost a stirrup and didn't get it back until the first turn, but by then it was too late. AK was already at the tail of the pack and 13 lengths off the lead. This incredible horse with bottom I haven't seen in years just couldn't make it up before the race was done, and finished 6th.

Shackleford led from the start, like the hot-rod he is, but faded by the last turn into the almost quarter mile home stretch. If Animal Kingdom hadn't been fouled at the start, I have no doubt he would have taken Shackleford with ease. As it was, Shackleford just did edge out AK for 5th place.

The winner was 24-1 long shot Ruler On Ice by less than a length over Stay Thirsty, another long shot, going away at odds of 16-1. Final time was 2:30.88, which is the second slowest time since 2000.

I'm just happy Animal Kingdom wasn't hurt, didn't go down, and his jockey was safe, and that overall it was a safe race. In the final analysis I found it a rather lackluster race. And I certainly hope there's an inquiry into that whole business with Isn't He Perfect.


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  #14  
Old June 13th, 2011, 1:42 am
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MinervasCat  Female.gif MinervasCat is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Quote:
Originally Posted by SadiraSnape View Post
Well, this year's Triple Crown was a 3 way split -- Animal Kingdom in the Derby, Shackleford by sheer luck in the Preakness, and Ruler On Ice in the Belmont.

It was a filthy track today, muddy and sloppy from rain, and it was a filthy start. Animal Kingdom clipped heels with Mucho Macho Man, who had been crowded and bumped by Isn't He Perfect, and AK almost went down. His jock, John Velazquez, lost a stirrup and didn't get it back until the first turn, but by then it was too late. AK was already at the tail of the pack and 13 lengths off the lead. This incredible horse with bottom I haven't seen in years just couldn't make it up before the race was done, and finished 6th.

Shackleford led from the start, like the hot-rod he is, but faded by the last turn into the almost quarter mile home stretch. If Animal Kingdom hadn't been fouled at the start, I have no doubt he would have taken Shackleford with ease. As it was, Shackleford just did edge out AK for 5th place.

The winner was 24-1 long shot Ruler On Ice by less than a length over Stay Thirsty, another long shot, going away at odds of 16-1. Final time was 2:30.88, which is the second slowest time since 2000.

I'm just happy Animal Kingdom wasn't hurt, didn't go down, and his jockey was safe, and that overall it was a safe race. In the final analysis I found it a rather lackluster race. And I certainly hope there's an inquiry into that whole business with Isn't He Perfect.
I thought there was going to be a heck of a pile up there at the beginning. I was more interested in whether everyone was ok the watching the race. Anyone who thinks they can go to the lead in a mile and a half race on a track like oatmeal is crazy. Yeah, they did it earlier in the day, but those were shorter races. The turf race before the Belmont, I think I could have walked faster, but the grass was wet and soggy and they weren't going to get a very fast time.

I really had great respect for Animal Kingdom's jockey. He knew there was no way he could catch up so he didn't abuse the horse, but let him run his race. Even coming down the stretch, you could see the horse was trying with everything he had, and the jock just hand rode him, knowing he was giving it all he could and there was no use beating him with a whip or anything. That's a good rider.

Hey, Sadira. While going through all of my old pictures this past week I found my Ron Turcotte autograph. I got it in 1963 when he was so young -- I think he'd lost his "bug" the year before that, or he might have still been an apprentice that year, I'll have to check. Anyway, he was riding at Laurel when I met him. He was a really nice guy.

But, he was destined for bigger and better things than Laurel, Bowie (which was still open at that time) or Pimlico (which is only a "big" name track on Preakness day). Those were all "middle level" tracks and not like Hialeah, Gulfstream, Aqueduct, Belmont, or even Saratoga on the East Coast, or Santa Anita and Hollywood Park on the West Coast.

Pimlico was once one of the premier tracks in the country and the site of the famous Seabiscuit-War Admiral match race. And, now, the wonderful Maryland Legislature won't allow them to have slot machines like the tracks in WV, PA, NJ, and DE. All of these draw away from the Maryland tracks.

Charles Town, in WV, has become a regular casino, with racing as a sideline. If the tracks in Maryland don't get the slots, which, by the way, some resorts in Maryland have, so they are not completely banned, then they'll close and Maryland will lose the Preakness...a terrible day for the history of horse racing in Maryland.


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  #15  
Old June 23rd, 2011, 9:44 pm
delaford321  Undisclosed.gif delaford321 is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

I don't know a THING about the sport, other than I enjoy the social aspect of going. My ventures at Derby and Steeplechase rarely land me seeing a horse.


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  #16  
Old June 29th, 2011, 3:53 pm
SadiraSnape  Female.gif SadiraSnape is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Just some racing tidbits I came on today...

I read an interesting article about Sir Barton, the first Triple Crown winner.

http://www.mentalfloss.com/blogs/archives/88021

Did you know he ended up standing at stud for the US Army Remount service? I didn't.

And here's a video of Secretariat winning the Belmont Stakes in 1973 -- he won by 31 lengths and set a record time of 2:24, a record which still stands.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cS4f6wiQJh4


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Last edited by SadiraSnape; June 29th, 2011 at 4:11 pm.
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  #17  
Old August 7th, 2011, 5:55 am
TabbyCat1  Female.gif TabbyCat1 is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

I'm an enthusiast — I don't know everything; my knowledge comes from Laura Hildenbrandt's Seabiscuit, Secretariat (the movie), Seabiscuit (the movie), the research I've done briefly online, and from watching the Triple Crown every year as long as I can remember. I've never actually been to a race, but I really really really want to go to the Kentucky Derby (or just visit Churchill Downs).

But, I do have my favorites, so here they are:

Favorite horses:
Secretariat
Seabiscuit
Zenyatta
Eight Bells
Barbaro
Mine That Bird ("Mine That BIRD!!")

(all US horses. And I know someone who pet Zenyatta!)

Favorite trainers have to be Tom Smith and Lucien Laurin.

Secretariat is the greatest athlete to ever live—hands (or rather hooves) down. Who can compare to that! "...like a tremendous machine!..."

Jockeys are Ron Turcotte, Red Pollard, Calvin Borell.

I like The Meadow Farms and Howard Farms, and Claiborne Farm too.

I love the Triple Crown races and all of the tracks.

My favorite interesting fact is that most racehorses aren't buried whole; they're buried with their head, heart, and hooves. Secretariat was one of the few buried whole.


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  #18  
Old August 25th, 2011, 4:41 am
Nelisthan  Undisclosed.gif Nelisthan is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

Well There is no doubt that Horse racing is the sports of kings . I would say that It is lovely sports at all.I am also happy that you people have throw light on this amazing game of sports as well .


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  #19  
Old October 6th, 2011, 3:57 pm
PotentPotions  Undisclosed.gif PotentPotions is offline
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Re: Horse Racing

I'll play:

* Who do you think are the top 10 race horses of all time? Let's break this down by country, as the racing surfaces in each country vary so much, as do the length of the races, weight carried, etc. So, if you would, please list the country after the name of the horse.

1)Man O' War-US
2)Seabiscuit-US
3)Secretariat-US
4)Phar Lap-AU
5)Bold Ruler-US
6)Princequillo-IR
7)Native Dancer-US
8)Seattle Slew-US
9)Affirmed-US
10)War Admiral-US

honorable mentions: Alysheba, Cigar, Zenyatta, Rachel Alexandera, Whirlaway, Citation.







* Who is you personal favorite race horse (you can have more than one, but please don't list more than five)?

Conquackador. Why, you ask may ask? Because he flunked out and is currently living the good life in my barn.

* Who is your favorite jockey? (same as above)

Shoemaker

* Favorite trainer? (Ditto)

Baffert, Motion, Zito, Matz

* Favorite owners/breeders/stables/farms? (as above)

I don't have one.

* What is your favorite race track?

Saratoga

* Favorite horse race?

The Grand National

* What race do you think tests a horses "true merit" the most?

See above

* What do you think of current thoroughbreds and the trend to breed horses for the "classic" distance of 1 1/4 miles?

I have no opinion of breeding for a specific distance, if it is done wisely, and in regards to pedigree and BONE STRUCTURE.


As an aside, soring still goes on in the gaited horse circuits. The USDA and the various state level agriculture departments and SPCAs have been having a fit with them, as of late.



Last edited by PotentPotions; October 6th, 2011 at 4:08 pm.
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