- Garrett Gomez responds to the criticism of his ride in the Belmont:
"If [Hard Spun] breaks a length in front, sure, I'm going to let him go ahead. But that isn't the way it worked. When I got outbroke by a length and a half by Prado [riding C P West], pretty much my hands were tied, unless I sent him, and the whole idea was to get him to settle. Once you get him going, you're not going to get him slowed down. If I wanted to go any faster, the pace was just going to wind up hurting me in the end.We're of course hoping to see the big two (Street Sense and Curlin) plus one (Hard Spun) in the Haskell, where the distance may be more suitable for the latter. Curlin seems set for the race, and Monmouth VP Dennis Dowd is being cautious when he says: "..We'll probably get one of the other two -- either Street Sense or (Kentucky Derby runner-up) Hard Spun. Maybe both." However, on a more ominous note:
"So I took back a little, dropped in for a second because [Prado] was going to take [Hard Spun] out to the parking lot, and once he started to drop back in, I moved back to the outside. I didn't want to be down inside, and I had Curlin trapped down inside. It was an ideal situation.
"I was in a great stalking position. The race was in my hands from that point on. At the half-mile pole, we're head and head for the lead, and I'm waiting to press the 'go' button. But when it came time to race for the money, there was nothing there." [NY Post]
[GM Bob] Kulina said he recently spoke to Carl Nafzger, the trainer of Street Sense, and came away encouraged by what he heard -- despite industry rumors that the first-ever Juvenile and Derby winner, recently sold to Darley Stud for a reported $50 million, might not race again. [Newark Star Ledger]That's an industry rumor that I haven't heard, but one that is based on reality and recent history. As a Derby winner, Darley probably doesn't need anything more from Street Sense, whereas I'm sure they would like to see Hard Spun repair his slightly tarnished reputation. The skeptic in me says that a win in the Haskell could prove to be the latter's last race, at least against this crew. I don't believe that Darley is anxious to see him run beyond eight or nine furlongs ever again, no matter who rides him. The Star-Ledger also reports that Scat Daddy, Any Given Saturday, Delightful Kris, and Cobalt Blue are possibilities for the race.
A reader asked whether there are any reports about the demand for Breeders Cup tickets, and the Form quotes a Monmouth spokesperson as saying: "It looks like we are oversubscribed for the tickets allotted."
More than 4,600 online orders were received. Approximately 1,100 more arrived by mail for the 15,000 seats available for public sale. Each order application was limited to four tickets.Also be advised that:
When allocating seats, preference will be given to those ordering seats for both Friday and Saturday, although that was not a requirement for Saturday seats.As Eminem once said: "That's pretty shitty, man." I don't recall anything on the application indicating that those who ordered for both days would get preference, do you? Not that most of us would be in position to go both days anyway. The crowd on Saturday will be limited to around 45,000.
- And reader ljk inquired about Tiz Wonderful, and asked if we think that Asmussen would consider running him in the Travers with Curlin if he was ready. But Marty McGee indicates in the Form that he would try and keep them separated; keep in mind that Stonerside, one of the Curlin partners, is the owner of Tiz Wonderful.
"He's been back to loping pretty strongly for a while now," Asmussen said, adding that he'd like to run Tiz Wonderful in the Jim Dandy on July 29 at Saratoga.