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Thursday, March 23, 2006

Achilles' Heel...or Leg....or Back....

- First it was a sore right leg, then a hot left foot. Now Ernie Paragallo says that it was back spasms that were bothering Achilles of Troy, leading to him being vanned off of the Aqueduct track last Saturday. Tomorrow it could be hemmarhoids, and by the weekend we could be told that he needs root canal.

"He's just body sore…..We can't find nothing up front. It's exactly the same thing after he won that race by 14 lengths (the Count Fleet Stakes). Doc worked on him then and he came back to win his next race (the Whirlaway Stakes). He'll work on him again and hopefully he'll return to the track on Friday." [NY Daily News]
Gee, for someone who said “I'm going to tell the truth,” this story has sure changed a lot. He first blamed the trainer (who blamed the jockey) for not telling him about a foot problem that now doesn’t exist - that's the new trainer that replaced the one he said he wouldn’t fire. He also told us that Scanlon’s Song was better than Achilles of Troy, a notion that many people took to the bank, as he’s been a beaten favorite twice in allowance company now. (Of course, that didn’t stop Paragallo from proclaiming that he could run in the Wood.)

Recalling most recently the case of Noble Causeway at Saratoga this past summer, my experience is that horses aren’t usually vanned off the track for no reason. If Paragallo is really telling the truth and the colt is fine, maybe the truth is that Achilles of Troy simply isn’t as good as Like Now or Keyed Entry. Perhaps we’ll find out in the Wood, unless he goes in the Arkansas Derby instead.

- Corinthian’s Triple Crown-ending injury deprives us of one of the more appealing contenders, but it’s likely for the best, at least as far as the colt’s long-term future is concerned. He's obviously immature and has issues, and he can use the time to consult with a therapist. Of course, it’s not in the best interests of those who had him at 15-1 in Pool Two. This is the type of thing that caused Bob Neuimier at to ask:
Is it financially safer to toss cash out of your bedroom window and hope a wind blows some of the money back in or bet one of the three Kentucky Derby future pools? []
- Though the Form reported the other day that Henny Hughes would not be pointed to the Derby, Kiaran McLaughlin told Thoroughbred Times otherwise:
"I'm going to stay in Florida through the Florida Derby (G1) [on April 1 at Gulfstream Park], then go to New York, and he'll train toward the Kentucky Derby (G1) via the New York route."
I should have known not to believe the Form, since it made absolute perfect sense that a supremely talented colt who hasn’t raced since the Breeders’ Cup and who spent the winter in Dubai, not exactly a hot spot for Derby winners, would be carefully and patiently prepared for a potentially lucrative summer/fall campaign! What was I thinking, that something involving the Derby would make sense?


Walter said...

...i made my first Derby Pool bet in several years at the end of Round One, taking "All Others" @ 3/1 odds...and i felt pretty good about it for a while, as Stevie Wonderboy and several others started falling by the wayside shortly thereafter...but right now?...i think it's looking pretty dicey...Brother Derek looks very strong, and so does Lawyer Ron...Cause to Believe is no slouch either...A.P. Warrior has jumped back into the fray...Point Determined has a chance...Barbaro has a chance...Keyed Entry and Bob and John are still lurking about...throw in Bluegrass Cat and First Samurai for good measure...and normally, by this time, several strong contenders (pardon the pun) have joined the party...but where are they this year?...Strong Contender and Discreet Cat appear most capable, but each still have a LOT to prove...after those two, there isn't much...Sweetnorthernsaint?...Deputy Glitters?...Like Now?...perhaps Racketeer? me crazy, but i think the first group looks a whole lot stronger than the second group...and it ain't even close...

alan said...

Yeah, I gotta agree I'm sorry to say. Seems like Discreet Cat isn't even going to come unless he has a monstrous performance on Saturday. Strong Contender is your best hope at this point IMO, but now Ward's plans are all screwed up because he couldn't get into the Lane's End.