So, here are the details on the disappointing breeze by our Tactical Cat colt in the under tack show at Ocala:
Not good. He was throwing his head around and acting stupid at the start, so was slow getting into gear, and that cost him. Niall and we expected him to run at least 21.4. Since so few people actually saw how he ran, and the video doesn't show the (very good) gallop-out, the work probably cost us at least $50,000.I imagine there are lots of people whose horses didn't breeze as well as they'd liked who are using that Bellamy Road line! He still brought $87,000 off of his relatively lethargic work. With over 1300 horses entered for this 4 day sale, a good gallop-out after a mediocre workout isn't going to mean anything except to someone who is specifically interested, and was watching closely. The good news is that there is buyer interest and has been before - he was nearly sold privately months ago. Plus, the reports we've gotten on him have all been quite good. It seems somewhat unfair that all the months and dollars put in to preparing a sale horse like this can be so affected by a single second in a workout, but that's the game. Who knows, perhaps it will all work out for the best; we've all read of successful racehorses who were withdrawn or didn't meet their sales reserve.
He's been getting lots of buyer interest, and we keep reminding people that Bellamy Road ran in 23.3 at this same sale last year and is now the Kentucky Derby favorite, but it'll be a struggle.
We probably won't decide what to do until Thursday morning [his sale day], based on buyer interest and how the sale's going generally. We could either scratch here and try again at Timonium in June, or set a reserve that reflects what we think his real value as a race horse is and then try to get him to the races, either to keep or to sell off a (we hope) impressive maiden win.
Speaking of Bellamy Road, he has a full brother who is scheduled to sell on Thursday at this sale; he breezed 2f in 22.3. If you look at the catalog page, you'll see BELLAMY ROAD in black type, but only that he's won 2 out of 3 starts including the Miller Genuine Draft Cradle S. (G3) I imagine most buyers won't need the update on that. But it does remind one of just how inexperienced this year's Kentucky Derby favorite is.
- Rockport Harbor returns to Philadelphia after his most troubled winter away from home. He's out of the Triple Crown series.
Later this week the colt will be sent back to Philadelphia Park, where Servis said "we'll back off him a little bit, let him go nice and easy, let him tell me when he's ready to start cranking it up again."
"His next spot will be a race where they least expect to see him," Servis said. Summer races like the Haskell, Travers and Pennsylvania Derby could be on Rockport's dance card at some point. [Philadelphia Daily News]