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Monday, December 11, 2006

Ouija Board Misses Finale

- As you may know by now, Ouija Board did not make it to the post for what was to be her final race, the Hong Kong Vase on Sunday. She was found to be lame, and was diagnosed with "same front splint that she injured two years ago in the Prince of Wales's Stakes at York." [Daily Racing Form] I'll allow Richard Edmondson, writing eloquently for the UK's Guardian, sum it all up:

Ouija Board's career had so carefully threaded its way down a romantic channel that it appeared inevitable that it would culminate in an eighth Group One victory and station as the record prize money earner in British racing history. But a recurrence on Saturday of the splint injury which bedevilled her four-year-old career saw this fairytale narrative in ashes.

It was always going to end in tears, but we did not expect them to be of this variety. Lord Derby cried himself, yet he had already prepared himself for life without Ouija Board the racehorse. He is already looking forward to Ouija Board the racemare, and she will soon be producing progeny of her own, beginning with a union with Kingmambo in Kentucky.

It is the good Lord's intention to sell any colts she produces and retain the fillies, first for racing and then for the paddocks. If Ouija Board's life can return to the dreamland it inhabited for so long, it will be that she becomes a foundation mare of great influence. But that is for the future.
- A Kingmambo - Ouija Board foal would be inbred 4x5 to Northern Dancer. Ouija Board descends from an already-stellar distaff family that includes the Arlington Million winner Teleprompter, and additional Grade 1 winners Roseate Tern, Ibn Bey, Red Bloom, and Red Fort.

Eight-year old Collier Hill, a compelling story himself, took the Vase in Ouija Board's absence, following up on his win in the Canadian International. Scorpion finished 7th. You can watch the race here, courtesy of The Race is Not Always to the Swift.

- Good news for those of us who don't have HRTV - TVG has snagged the exclusive rights to races from Monmouth and the Meadowlands. Of course, better yet would be news that the two network would stop squabbling and carry everything.

2 Comments:

Steve D said...

Alan,
I find it completely inexplicable that New Jersey racing would sign an exclusive agreement with any provider, in this current environment.

It has become increasingly clear that California, as a whole, is regretting exclusivity through TVG and will change course when the agreement is up. It also appears that Churchill is evaluating non-exclusive options. For NJ to go exclusive is mind-boggling!

In the face of changing technology, specific to content distribution: internet, youtube, video podcast, mobile...it is insane to think that exclusively providing your signal to a single cable channel-let alone a channel whose only creditable programming has been coverage of workouts leading up to the KY Derby-just makes no sense. If I were a track operator, I would want anyone and everyone to have my content, provided that my share of betting revenue from that content was routed my way.

Full disclosure, I own a few hundred shares of Youbet, who is leading the fight against the onerous fees it must pay to TVG for taking bets on exclusive tracks.

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