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Friday, March 30, 2007

Summit in Dubai

- It seems kinda surreal, this World Cup. It's a classic first-time confrontation between giants of different generations that recalls the likes of those between Affirmed-Seattle Slew or Alysheba-Ferdinand that we rarely ever see anymore. But's it's happening far, far away in a shadowy place in which human rights often take a back seat. It may remind our Canadian friends of the classic, to put it mildly, Summit Series, the first-ever meeting of the NHL players comprising Team Canada, and the Russian national hockey team in 1972, when the climactic game, and the dramatic winning goal occurred in Moscow during the Cold War.

A big difference of course is that the Summit Series was covered extensively in Canadian press, and watched on TV by probably every person, and probably most of the horses in the country. The World Cup is being held in relative secrecy here. We've discussed the TV arrangements extensively. The racing trades each have reporters there (and Bloodhorse and Thoroughbred Times dutifully reported on the massive new racing complex planned by the Sheikh without questioning who was going to build it, and as if any of us could possibly care less). But none of the racing writers for major dailies that I've seen have been sent to Dubai to cover the event. For the most part it's been reduced to a few lines. The New York Times had no mention of the event whatsoever in Friday's paper. The LA Times devoted just a brief mention to local hero Lava Man.

But it's really happening; I was absolutely convinced that it wouldn't, at least not at this point in time. With all the caution that has been exercised on behalf of Discreet Cat, I'm quite surprised that he's still running despite missing the prep. I suppose it's all part of the big show, along with today's big announcement, that the emirate is putting on for the world.

Regarding Invasor, there's that nagging worry that his 4th place finish last year was due to the fact that he doesn't like the racetrack. I think it more likely that he's just developed over the last year into the top class racehorse that he is. If I'm correct about that, than I have to say that as much as I was amazed by Discreet Cat last year, I'd be fairly surprised (and further amazed) if he beats Invasor. I agree with Walter that it won't be worth betting either one of them; but another friend suggests that 6-1 makes Premium Tap worth a shot, and that seems about right to me.

1 Comment:

Anonymous said...

Agree about Invasor. If he doesn't have a problem with the track, the exacta with DC off the ticket could be decent.