- I don’t much care for Rockport Harbor’s website, in fact, I think it sucks. I cringe the moment I log onto it and hear the freaking Rocky theme song. I’m just so sick of that thing, and even if it does reflect the horse's name, its stronger connotation is that of an underdog, a role that just doesn’t apply to a Kentucky-bred son of a $125,000 stud fee stallion. If it’s supposed to convey the fact that his trainer is generally based in Philadelphia, I’d point out that he and the horse have spent less time there lately than the Republicans did during the presidential campaign. And then there are the little sidebar boxes with annoying little tidbits of information that I couldn’t care less about like
Rocky likes to laze around in the mornings before going out to the track. He uses the banked bedding around the sides of the stall as his "pillow".And I’m sure you’re all fascinated to know that he loves to play with his tongue.
More interesting though is owner Rick Porter’s statement about Rockport Harbor and the Kentucky Derby.
THE KENTUCKY DERBY IS STILL A REALISTIC GOAL. JOHN AND I WILL NOT SACRIFICE HIS CAREER FOR THE DERBY, HOWEVER. HE IS ONE OF THE BEST THREE YEAR OLDS IN THE WORLD AND WE WANT HIM TO RACE NOT ONLY AS A THREE YEAR OLD BUT AS A FOUR YEAR OLD. I WANT TO RUN IN THE KENTUCKY DERBY, BUT HIS FUTURE IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN ANY ONE RACE.Do you think that facing 19 other horses on the first Saturday in May is still a “realistic goal at this point?” This horse has had repeated problems with the injury to his hoof from the Remsen and its aftermath, and now a baseball sized lump on his neck from a blood clot. Even with any realistic chance of making the Arkansas Derby fading quickly, the connections have now nominated him for the Lexington Stakes, which means that after four months of being on the sidelines followed by one rather tentative race, he would then run twice two weeks apart, the second at a mile and a quarter?
Also possibly headed for the Lexington is Sort It Out. Just a few weeks ago, Bob Baffert said he badly needed some rest. But he ran him in the Louisiana Derby on Mar 12; in the Winstar Derby Saturday, and now he could run again on Apr 23 (his third in the Winstar Derby did not earn him the graded money he may need to get into the Ky Derby), and then again two weeks later in the Derby? So instead of a rest, the colt is now looking at possibly 4 races in 8 weeks. That’s just not right.
- And where the hell is my NTRA Mystery Voucher? It’s been mailed to 420,000 “consumers,” and it’s the 10th such promotion since August 2000; I’ve never gotten one! What do I have to do; I’m an original card carrying member and have my Go Baby Go hat to prove it!? It’s a nice way to get racing fans out to the track on a specific day I suppose, but how about mailing vouchers or some kind of scratch-off card game card to some of the other 37.4% of American adults who tell pollsters that they have at least a little interest in the sport...espeically those who have never actually been to a track? Not vouchers for them to go make a bet, but perhaps a game that assigns them a particular horse or combination thereof in some upcoming nationally televised stakes race or series of races like, say this past weekend’s Florida Derby and subsequent Derby preps, so that they’ll make a point to turn the race(s) on and root like hell? It doesn’t have to be for a million bucks either, just some incentive to watch a race and pull for a horse or two.
Well, with or without my mystery voucher, I’ll be at the BIG A on Saturday for the Wood, the Carter, and now also to see Lost in the Fog run in the Bay Shore. And as reported exclusively here a few weeks ago, they’ll be a Bet Three with the Wood, Carter, and the Illinois Derby. So if anyone has their mystery voucher and can’t make it to the track here, let me know and I’ll split the million bucks with you. You can trust me.
- Consolidator blazed 5 furlongs in 58 flat yesterday, the best of 26; Bellamy Road got the same distance in :59 4/5, and Going Wild took a minute flat, all at Churchill. Thoroughbred Daily News reports that Don't Get Mad galloped out from his official work time of 1:01.40, getting six furlings in 1:14 1/5; a final furlong of around 12 4/5; and also that Julio Canani caught Sweet Catomine in 59 flat (59.20 official) and she galloped out in 1:12 3/5, or 13 3/5 for the last furlong.