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Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Tale of Three Three-Year Olds

- A trio of interesting and emphatic Triple Crown-nominated three-year old winners at GP on Wednesday. Keep Laughing won off by six with a perfect trip under Johnny V. at 7-10 in his second start for McLaughlin. This colt was second to Pletcher's Understatement in his debut last month, and was 7-10 here. Keep Laughing is by Distorted Humor, and while his $85,000 sales price looks bad compared to the current $300,000 stud fee that you see in the Form, the stallion's fee was $50,000 the year Keep Laughing was bred. On the other hand, considering that that fee was up to $150,000 the year he was sold, and that his half-brother It's No Joke (both out of the graded winner It's Personal [Personal Flag]) had been graded stakes placed that year (just after the sale, he won the first of two graded stakes), the price must have been somewhat of a disappointment. But he's certainly done fine so far.

The sixth race was a successful return to the races for Ready's Echo, who, you might recall, created a stir at Saratoga last August when, according to Tom Durkin, he came from "another county" in his debut to run second to Z Humor, also making his first start on a day which also saw Maimonides romp in his first start. You also might remember that he got a lousy fig. It was probably because of that 58 that the Pletcher-trainee was 5-1 in the morning line. The bettors were not fooled however, sending him off as the 9-5 second choice behind Morning Theft, third behind Understatement and Keep Laughing in his debut.

Ready's Echo (More Than Ready) wasn't nearly as far back this time; only nine lengths after a quarter rather than the 25 he conceded in his debut. Velazquez made an inside out move on the turn, and, though he looked a bit green in the stretch, Ready's Echo poured it on late for an easy win. And this time, his Beyer should be just fine; the final time of 1:23.21 was a shade quicker than that of Keep Laughing. He gained 5 3/4 lengths in a final 3/8ths run in 38.11, not bad.

When I read the comment by reader ljk about Big Brown, the name rang a bell. Indeed, he's another one who made a splash at last summer's Saratoga meeting, this one with an eleven length win with a rousing late run on the grass for Dutrow. I also wrote about some interesting inbreeding, to Damascus and Round Table, and how he would be worth watching on the grass.

Wednesday's 7th was off the turf, but that didn't much bother this son of Boundary. He was just the easiest kind of winner, with Kent Desormeaux doing his impression of Castellano on Bellamy Road in the Wood (minus the cheerleading). He only beat four horses, but one of them was Crimson Comic, a bet-down eight length winner in his debut for the Toddster at Laurel last fall. Big Brown came home in 25.79; but he was totally geared down. So whatever Beyer he earns for the mile run in 1:35.66 won't tell the whole story.


Anonymous said...

I wrote then about Ready's Echo, and while it is likely too late for the Derby he may show up in the Preakness or Belmont:

"mr_ed says:

I am going to differ with you all and make him my favorite for the 2008 Derby.

The way he leveled off and finished he is going to be awfully tough going two turns.

Good connections, he will be on the trail long after we forget about Maimondies??"

Glimmerglass said...

Big Brown is pointing to the Fl Derby. Contender or pretender is the question. The replay

Sure he's looked great crushing allowance company, but does that mean he can beat a field of tested graded stakes runners in a $1M Grade 1 out of nowhere?

I've seen a lot in the game so I won't say its impossible, but exceedingly unlikely. The FL derby should also see Peru's champion Tomcito appear as well.

If Brown does well at least IEAH could pursue a marketing deal with UPS :)

McCarron said...

How often do you see a 10 length + winner at the Spa, at first asking, going long?

After being sidelined with an injury for quite some time, Big Brown comes back and beats NX1 foes by about the same 10 length margin, over a different surface, in the slop, earning a Beyer of 104in his second career start.

There is obviously some freakish talent here. Perhaps too little too late to make a serious run for the roses without a solid foundation. However, you can't dismiss a horse with such versatility and obvious talent to accomplish this much to date under the circumstances. Of course, perhaps my view is biased by the 150-1 Wynn Derby future I am holding. That tends to skew the view a bit.