- Great race in the Sands Point, as reader Jim L noted; Rutherienne, the 7-5 favorite, came from dead last to get a share of first place money in a race in which the pace was soundly against her. With eventual co-winner Bit of Whimsy in close pursuit, Tears I Cry set a lazy pace; 49.57, 1:14.10 to the three quarters. But from there, after quarter splits of 24.82, 24.75, and 24.53, the final three eighths went in 34.43 - splits of 22.84 and 11.59. Rutherienne was faster than that, flying home to just nail Bit of Whimsy for the dead heat.
The latter was moving directly from her maiden win to graded stakes company for Barclay Tagg. And though she benefited from the slow pace, she's still an impressive three-year old, and is a length away from unbeaten in three starts, all on grass. This daughter of Distorted Humor is out of a half-sister to several turf stakes winners, including Grade 1 winners Royal Mountain Inn (Man O'War) and Miss Josh (Gamely).
Ice Cool Kitty did take the state-bred stakes in the 7th, at 1-2; this daughter of Tomorrow's Cat now has three romping wins since stretching out to a mile for Dutrow.
- Light Shift, the Vodafone Oaks winner, is by Kingmambo, out of a mare by Shirley Heights (Mill Reef). Her second dam is Northern Trick, a Grade 1 winner in France, and a half-sister to On the Sly, a name I haven't seen for awhile, but who I remember well, particularly for his win in the 1977 Jockey Club Gold Cup at a mile and a half. He shipped in to win for the late Mel Gross, who was only 58 when he passed away in 2005 from a stroke; Gregg McCarron was in the saddle. On the Sly started 46 times, with 14 wins.
And man, have you seen Authorized leave the Epsom Derby field in the dust? I've posted the video over in the sidebar; the call is in French, but all you need to watch for is the green silks. Frankie Dettori bided his time, but when he asked Authorized to go, he was gone!
"As I passed the furlong marker the whole world seemed to stop, and with it my heart. With that number of runners, I was expecting a dogfight. Instead it was as smooth as an oil painting. But it was the longest two-and-a-half minutes of my life." [Independent UK]This was the year that everything fell into place for Dettori (including the Sheikh releasing him to ride), and he got his first Derby, just as Todd Pletcher will, some day, win the one in Kentucky. Authorized is by the Sadlers Wells stallion Montjeu, out of a mare by Saumarez, a grandson of Blushing Groom.
- And the readers who speculated that there was something up with Street Sense were right. As originally reported by the Racing Form, His Royal Sheikhness has purchased his breeding rights; the guy is obviously still liquid even after giving $10 billion to his foundation. Here's a man who is likely not concerned about the price of steak.
Nafzger said he did not know whether the pending sale played a role in Tafel's decision not to run Street Sense in the Belmont Stakes next Saturday.Remember that the Sheikh dissed the Belmont with Bernardini last year, so one could speculate that though the horse will run in Tafel's colors until his certain retirement at the end of the year, he no longer is in charge of determining his campaign.
"To my knowledge it was not a factor, but I can't say that for sure," he said. [Daily Racing Form]