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Sunday, March 23, 2008

Tomcito Es Un Tramposo

- Several commenters now have mentioned Tomcito, and I have to admit that I've been out of it enough over the last couple of weeks that I had to Google him to refresh my memory and see who he is. Ah yes, the Peruvian horse....actually a pure US-bred who sold as a yearling at Keeneland for $7500 and has won four of five in Peru, including Peruvian Grade 1 stakes against older South American horses at a mile and a quarter and a mile and a half.

Personally, I think that Tomcito should not be eligible for the Derby. The conditions of the race should specify that it is for three-year olds who have not run over nine furlongs....and I'm only half-kidding about this. The whole intrigue of the race is based on young horses trying the mile and a quarter distance for the first time, and in that sense, Tomcito has cheated. Derby horses are not supposed to have already answered the red phone at 3 AM.

Tomcito is by Street Cry, the sire of last year's Derby winner Street Sense, out of an unraced mare by the late Eastern Echo (Damascus). He has some interesting inbreeding - 5x5 to Hoist the Flag and 4x4 to Northern Dancer and his half-sister Raise the Standard. And he has some solid distance influence close up, with horses such as Theatrical, Alleged, Glowing Tribute, and Sword Dancer all in his first four generations. Despite all that, and his success at longer distances on the racetrack, he has a serious question of class to answer when he starts in the Florida Derby on Saturday. An impressive performance would certainly shake up the unsettled Derby picture; but to me, it would smack of, as Trevor Denman would say, his jumping in at the quarter pole.


Anonymous said...

Could he be the next Canonero II?

Well, guess there never will be another Canonero II, since he would never made it into the starting gate with today's rules.

Hence the run in the FLA Derby.

But why can't he win this week?

Arguably he is more proven than most of the first level allowances horses he is facing, and he will still be running at the end.

Adds badly needed intrigue to the overall picture.

Superfecta said...

I had a similar reaction - I love South-American-breds and so was a little disappointed to see that he wasn't one, but I like that he's run over actual distances. Very curious to see how he stacks up against his 'correct' age-mates.

And I love your 3 am phone reference...

Anonymous said...

Ah but Tomcito's presence in the Derby picture is what makes this sport so much fun!

We simply don't know what level he can perform at against graded stakes runners in the States. Prado was impressed, he's put in some damn fine workouts, and if people can be ga-ga about Big Brown why not Tomcito too?

Nothing wrong with a Canonero II like story in 2008.

One nice change for this year - the 139th Travers Stakes will not be presented by the NY Lottery but rather by Shadwell Farm for 2008.

The logo is so so 139th Travers logo - from NYRA

El Angelo said...

This horse could also be the next Essence of Dubai. Still, it's such an uninteresting crop of horses, you have to strongly consider him.

Harl said...

Don't worry, NISTLE'S CRUNCH will win the Florida Derby.

Anonymous said...

Regarding Tomcito's eligibility:

Respectfully, yet strongly, disagree, The Derby's meaning would diminish, to me, if the conditions limited foreign horses who've raced at distances not of their own choosing, and were just trying to earn some dough and accolades against the best their country has to offer.

That's we buy the Form. It's just more handicapping, different factors to assimilate. Would the turn back help, hurt? Did it prove anything, beating pokies at classic unBeyered distances? But he's a Street Cry---great intrigue.

I'd have been fine with him going straight to Kentucky, but am way excited that he's gotta face some serious animals in Florida on Saturday.

Great to have you back, Alan. Missed LATG! Almost Emailed you on your honeymoon: "Uh, Alan, hi, it's Ernie, uh, are you busy? If Spitzer doesn't resign today, what does..."

Anonymous said...

File this one under "shock" - not.

Rags to Riches retired.

Who really expected her to ever return to racing after the Belmont Stakes let alone her loss in September? I certainly didn't.

As soon as Todd was void of comment on her 2008 training at the end of last year you knew it was a done deal.

With Tomcito you have to give his connections respect for pointing him to the Fl Derby which is one of the tougher prep races based upon the field then say the Tampa Bay Derby was on paper pre-race.

Alan Mann said...

>>File this one under "shock" - not.

Rags to Riches retired.

Well, certainly not a shock...but didn't I read just the other day that she had had a workout?