November 8, 2014

Paynter: Awesome heart

Here is a great story about Paynter, the Awesome Again colt - turned stallion - who showed great resilience in fighting laminitis and other obstacles thrown into his path.

Check out the full story of the mural about him at Winstar at this link:
http://www.zayatstables.com/articles/graffiti-mural-at-center-of-paynter-promotion.html

October 8, 2014

Tribute to Cigar

The all time great Cigar passed away on Oct 7 2014.

Here is one of his amazing victories, where he does it effortlessly!


CIGAR MASSACHUSETTS HANDICAP at SUFFOLK DOWNS


CIGAR BC Classic

Rest in Peace - big fella!

September 17, 2014

Great Races this Saturday in Pennsylvania

The Grade 1 Pennsylvania Derby (for 3 year olds) and the Grade 1 Cotillion Stakes (3 yr old fillies) will take place this Saturday at the Parx race track in Bensalem PA.

California Chrome, the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winning 3 yr old colt will vie for the top honors with several other able competitors such as Bayern, Tapiture and others. Post time is at 540pm for Race 12 - the PA Derby.

Race 11 would be the Cotillion Stakes which features Untapable, StopchargingMaria and other top fillies who will run 1 1/16th miles in their division.

Picks and Tips will be posted here by Friday evening. Stay tuned!

July 17, 2014

Mucho Macho Man Retired

The winner of the 2013 Breeder's Cup Classic (Gr I), Mucho Macho Man, has been retired and will stand at Adena

Mucho Macho Man (also known as MMM, 3M, or affectionately Moochie) had a superb career, winning or placing (2nd or 3rd) in 20 out of his 25 starts (Equibase stats) and earning about $5.6 million. His best performance was in the Breeder's cup classic last year, but he was gritty performer all through his career. He also came 2nd by just a half length in the 2012 BC Classic (behind Fort Larned).

On the 2011 Kentucky Derby trail, he placed in multiple Gr 2 races (Nashua, Remsen) as a 2 yr old and then won the Risen Star S. (Gr 2) and then ran a very creditable 3rd in the 2011 Kentucky Derby.

Here are some of great races of MMM. Note that they may not all be wins!


MMM coming 2nd but putting up a good fight in 2012

2011 Risen Star Stakes

CONGRATS MMM, you earned it!!

More: http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/86204/mucho-macho-man-retired-to-stand-at-adena

More news and sources:

July 8, 2014

Remembering Ruffian

Too often we hear only about the ill fated match race. This beautiful articl by Haskin relives the glorious life of Ruffian. Enjoy.

http://cs.bloodhorse.com/blogs/horse-racing-steve-haskin/archive/2014/07/07/a-nasty-challenge-for-ruffian.aspx

July 6, 2014

United Nations Handicap and Betamerica Promo

The Gr 1 United Nations Handicap (race on Turf) at 1 3/8 mi will be the 12th race at Monmouth Park today (July 6, 2014). Ten talented horses are in the field with some new faces from across the pond.

#10 Side Glance and #5 Main Sequence are both coming here after dismal performances at different races in the Royal Ascot meet.

Our picks focus on:
#2 Ghurair trained by Chad Brown (with a strong % for 3rd off layoff) and #5 Main Sequence trained by Graham Motion and #7 Kaigun (trained by Mark Casse) who has run well at both 1mi and 1 1/4 mi distances in the past two races.

#5 is definitely a wild card choice but might be well worth the risk with the payoff.

BETAMERICA is running some great July promotions and one of those is the $6 Exacta bet refund.

Recommended Bet on BetAmerica to take advantage of their $6 Exacta Refund Promotion

Monmouth  Race#: 12 
 EXACTA $1 Runner(s): BOX 2, 5, 7




June 17, 2014

Royal Ascot Meet 2014

The Royal Ascot meet opens at the Ascot racecourse in UK today.

The first race is at  9:30 am ET.

International Past Performances are available here.

Short write ups:

Race 1: Queen Anne Stakes  1mile (GR 1 for 4 yr olds and upwards) 9:30 am

#8 Toronado is coming after a long layoff but is listed as the M/L favorite. He has wins at the 1 mile distance at the Gr 1 level from last year. Little value here though if he goes off as the favorite.
#10 Verrazano has yet to perform after moving across the pond from US but he has been prepping well and might have a thing or two to say.

The wild card might be #5 Producer, who is stepping up in class but is dropping weight from his last race (where he came first at a mile).

Race 2: Coventry Stakes - 6F (GR 2 stakes for 2 yr olds) 10:05 am

#4 Capella Sansavero is unbeaten in 3 races and looks to run good
#12 Kool Kompany looks exceptionally good for this field. (8-1 M/L)
#6 - if you like the name, might be worth a bet :P

Race 3: King's Stand Stakes  - 5F  (GR 1 3 YO and upwards) 10:45 am

#1 Ahtoug is a real fighter and was 2nd to (#8) SheaShea in the Gr 2 Meydan sprint and 2nd again by a neck in a Gr 1 sprint.
#8 SheaShea - always a SOLID contender.
#6 Pearl Secret could be the value bet here.

Race 4: St. James Palace Stakes  - 1 mile (GR 1 - 3 YO Entire Colts only) 11:25am

#1 Kingman - a John Gosden trainee has been very impressive in his four victories out of his five career races.
#2 night of Thunder defeated Kingman in the Qipco 2000 Guineas recently. Expect a strong match up between these two.
#6 War Command could produce an upset.

Other races covered

May 28, 2014

Online Fundraising through Horse Related Items Auction

Merely reposting something I saw on paceadvantage.com by user turfeyejoe.

Opening bids generally start at one third retail price.

Auction Site Link

Great racing items for good cause

Two years ago, my 87-year-old father was abducted from his home. Three weeks later, police found his body in a swamp, 800 miles from his home. A suspect plead guilty to murder last month. In my dad's memory, we established a scholarship and award $1,000 annually to a high school senior who intends to follow my father's career by becoming a teacher. To raise money for the scholarship, we are holding an online auction May 23-30. All you need to bid is a computer and a credit card. We are a certified 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization.

Though my contacts in the racing industry, I have gathered numerous racing-related prizes. Opening bids generally start at one third retail price.

Here are some of the Thoroughbred racing prizes.
* 4 season clubhouse passes to Del Mar (value $1,600), opens at $533
* DRF Formulator 240-card package (value $695), opens at $232
* VIP package for 6 at Monmouth Park ($160 value), opens at $53
* Day at the races package for 6, including race named after you and winner's circle picture at Belmont Park ($400 value), opens at $133
* Handicapping books and DVDs by Steve Crist, Jim Quinn and Peter Fornatale ... opening bids at $10 each.

https://www.biddingforgood.com/auction/auctionhome.action?auctionId=207401888

May 18, 2014

Preakness 2014 - Chrome Wins!

California Chrome makes easy work of the Preakness field and wins in a very convincing fast time.

May 14, 2014

Derby Winner Chrome Arrives at PIMLICO

A picture is worth a 1000 words.

A video is worth.. well 30 fps normally, but thousands of frames/sec at photo finish line.

Here, it is a just a little joyful greeting and arrival at Pimlico for California Chrome,


Also on Facebook by Preakness Stakes.

May 5, 2014

California Chrome's Friends Cheering him - Harris Farms

Stumbled upon a video of most of the people from Harris Farms (horse division) who helped raise California Chrome through the years watching his derby race. This video brings out all the emotions, the nervousness and the pure joy in these people as they see their homegrown colt compete and win the 140th Kentucky Derby.

If you enjoyed watching this feel free to share this post and also follow this blog for more regular updates on all things related to horse racing

May 3, 2014

Kentucky Derby 2014 Analysis

16 Intense Holiday is going to be our top pick at odds over 5-1. California Chrome (#5) is definitely the one that has the best showing and seems to be on the improving pattern.

We are going to box 16 Intense Holiday and  5 California Chrome for an exacta.

We are also going to attempt a trifecta box with these three. (5, 10, 16 Wildcat Red)

Intense Holiday seems to be the one good longshot play that might peak well at the right time and with the right trip

Chrome makes it look too easy so far so we are definitely rooting for him!


Wildcat Red is a real fighter and for that we want to give him a good chance!

May all the horses come home safe and wish you all a great Kentucky Derby!

April 30, 2014

That's Three Strikes - Rough Weather Churchill Downs

Churchill Downs - home of the Kentucky Derby is facing some rough weather - and it is not just the rain and wind kind of weather which helps "horses bred for the mud". They could be facing some chills now, with three major developments which seem to show CD's actions in a negative light.

In my personal opinion one of them clearly does show them in negative light. That is the treatment being meted out to Hall of Fame retired jockey Ron Turcotte (link).

There has been a press release by two time derby winning (now wheelchair using) retired jockey Ron Turcotte about the dismal treatment afforded to him at Churchill Downs.
"However, my most recent experiences at the track have tarnished my fond memories of Churchill Downs through the actions, or should I say inaction, of track management who has not provided me with either accommodation or parking access during (Kentucky) Oaks and Derby days. Being confined to a wheelchair since my racing accident in 1978, it is no easy feat to maneuver through the crowds that attend the Derby festivities. It becomes a nearly impossible task when there is virtually no assistance from the track."
Turcotte said that in 2012, despite being the subject of a National Film Board of Canada documentary being filmed at Churchill, he was denied any parking assistance by the track.
Read more on BloodHorse.com: http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/84712/turcotte-issues-statement-against-churchill#ixzz30OegydzV
Source: Bloodhorse.com article

Further, some race horse owners running their horses in undercard graded stakes races are also speaking out about poor treatment being meted out to them.
What is wrong with this management group? No wonder racing is on the decline. They don’t have any regard for the owners, in my opinion. They are for themselves and the race track as I see it.
Not only do I feel that owners are treated like second class citizens by Churchill Downs, so too are the handicappers and everyday bettors. 
Source: Rick Porter (Fox Hill Farm) http://foxhillfarmstable.com/2014/04/28/churchill-made-an-irresponsible-mistake/

Then there is the the general discontent after the recent takeout increase.
Wagers on Win, Place, and Show were raised from 16% takeout to 17.5% takeout. On exotic wagers, the takeout increased from 19% to 22%. (source)
There is a boycott movement that is underway and vigorous discussions on this takeout increase and its repurcussions on horseplayer behavior (http://www.paceadvantage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=112989) and (http://www.horseraceinsider.com/John-Pricci/comments/04242014-horseplayers-to-churchill-downs-and-industry-wake-up)

While Churchill maybe run as an incorporated business, their management of their business model is turning away or infuriating many of their customers and partners, who are key to the business model.

What are your opinions and thoughts on these issues? Feel free to jump in and comment or share this post with others on social media if any of these topics are of interest to you. Keep it civil please.
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April 29, 2014

Kentucky Oaks - Friday May 2nd

Kentucky Oaks post positions are out.

1—Please Explain, Jose Lezcano, 50-1
2—Ria Antonia, Mike Smith, 10-1
3—Sugar Shock, Calvin Borel, 12-1
4—Rosalind, Joel Rosario, 8-1
5—Thank You Marylou, Julien Leparoux, 30-1
6—Kiss Moon, Victor Espinoza, 30-1
7—Fashion Plate, Gary Stevens, 6-1
8—Aurelia's Belle, Channing Hill, 50-1
9—Unbridled Forever, Robby Albarado, 12-1
10—Empress of Midway, Corey Nakatani, 50-1
11—My Miss Sophia, Javier Castellano, 8-1
12—Got Lucky, John Velazquez, 20-1
13—Untapable, Rosie Napravnik, 4-5

If the Track Condition is  FAST, then the analysis below should hold well.

>> While :13: Untapable is definitely the one to beat, I feel that :4: Rosalind can do very well in this race and even win it. This filly has closed off the pace on multiple occasions and has been close enough at the finish. Friday could be her day - I will take :4: if above 6-1 or Ex box it with :13:

Rosalind is ridden by Joel Rosario is right now the only real contender of value that I see in this field.

The other main contenders who I expect the crowd to bet on heavily would be :7: Fashion Plate and :11: My Miss Sophia. However, there will be at least one big longshot that I am still working on identifying.

March 5, 2014

Ghostzapper - A Powerful Inspiration

By the time I got involved with horse racing (in 2010), Ghostzapper (BC classic winner 2004, Horse of the year 04) had already retired from racing and has been active in stud duty. Once I discovered this champion, he has quickly risen to be the most inspiring athlete for me.

I have loved watching every one of his races and here I would like to share a few of the gems. From the fast closing victory in the Grade 1 Vosburgh...

to the tantalizing stretch battle with Saint Liam in the mile and 1/8th at the Gr I Woodward

to the absolutely sensational Breeder's Cup Classic (track record and stakes record) where he blows away a very talented field, Ghostzapper has always delivered, in style. The video below has extended post race coverage and trophy presentation included.

In 2005, he came back in the Gr 1 Metropolitan Handicap (Met Mile) to outclass competition.

He has definitely been one of the fantastic horses to be trained by Robert Frankel (aka Bobby Frankel) who has been immortalized by an unbeaten thoroughbred champion Frankel, in England. I almost forgot to add his superbly run Tom Fool Handicap which was run at a breakneck pace! 


Update

Recently I discovered some very interesting videos of Ghostzapper, hosted on Adena Springs (his owners' page). Titled, the "Ghost Series (opens in new window)", it conveys this champ's history with a new perspective of stories told around a campfire.

February 6, 2014

Movie about Barbaro (2006 Kentucky Derby Winner)

Here is a movie on vimeo about the 2006 Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro (a Dynaformer colt). Rest in peace Barbaro. Two weeks after the Derby, Barbaro injured his leg running in the Preakness and after several months of struggle, finally left this earth. His story is chronicled in this HBO movie.



Special credit goes to from  PLUS  for uploading this! 

January 21, 2014

First foals from many stakes winners

Many wonderful (horsey) athletes who went to stud last year have been working and covering mares and the results are just coming in! Here are some that I wanted to share.

This week I have seen a spate of foals being reported from Union Rags, Astrology (my 1st bet ever- Preakness)

1. Union Rags - Belmont 2012 winner. http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/82947/union-rags-first-foal-is-a-colt

2. Astrolgy - Iroqouois winner 2010 and Preakness 3rd 2011. http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/82942/first-foal-for-graded-stakes-winner-astrology

3. I''ll Have Another (Santa Anita Derby, K Derby, Preakness 2012) has his first foal  http://goo.gl/GShPs7  (links to https://www.facebook.com/BIGREDFARM photo of "Big red farm" in Japan.

4. Also this horse named Frankel had a foal (just kidding, Frankel is the real superhorse with an undefeated career)
http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/82832/first-frankel-foal-arrives-at-coolmore

5. To Honor and Serve (had a filly): http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/82766/to-honor-and-serves-first-foal-is-a-filly

I remember that Tapizar, Dialed In and Stay Thirsty also had first foals recently so I just wanted to acknowledge some of the new beginnings :) The links above may be mostly first foals for all these guys who I have followed, but feel free to share any others you like! It is always good to learn about pedigree crossings.

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