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Thursday, July 02, 2009

Odds and Ends

- Mark Allen took Calvin Borel off Mine That Bird.

"I'm not going to bad-mouth Calvin or Jerry because they've done me a lot of good," said Allen. "Heck, they won the Derby for me. But I'm not going to let them hang us out the way they did before the Preakness, waiting until the last minute to tell us we needed another rider." [DRF]
He sounds a bit miffed, and I don't blame him. Borel would consider dissing the Kentucky Derby winner, a horse which propelled him to his current 15 minutes of fame, for Warrior's Reward?? Seriously??

- Racing and all the other sports should take a lesson from the National Hockey League, who have apparently given a salary cap exemption to the Montreal Canadians!! Right? Always a good idea to prop up your top franchises.

- Redboarding alert here....but looking at Wednesday's results at Belmont, it seems like at least some of the winners paid some pretty fair prices. Miss Catalyst took the second for the Toddster (just his sixth winner from 43 starters, a tad under 14%). Three-year old daughter of Mr. Greeley had burned money of late, and I'm sure those who lost on her at 4-5 and 6-5 in her last two were just thrilled to see her pay $13 here.

In the third, Pinckney Hill was pounded to 3-5 in the Don Jack Stakes (T) off his 2 for 2 record, high Beyers, and impressive allowance win after a slow start. Fair enough, but that meant fair prices for some other nice horses in this overnight stakes. Sal the Barber ($15, with Dominguez) was coming off a close third in the Lamplighter at Monmouth in only his third career start. There obviously was room for improvement, and improve he did with a four length win and a Beyer of 97 (!) for trainer Christophe Clement. Sal the Barber (Alphabet Soup) is a three-year half-brother to the turf stakes winner Joyful Chaos; he's inbred 4x5 to Ribot.

In the 7th, Bobs Pinup Girl ($10) was moving sharply up in class after winning her first turf race, which came after a 1 for 13 career record on dirt. He was 12-1 that day, and won easily while jumping up to a 75 Beyer. Still, the bettors on Wednesday were obviously a bit skeptical of her 3-1 morning line. This daughter of Tiger Ridge, claimed by Sydney Dutrow for 20K in December, improved to an 80 Beyer here. And in the 8th, Hurricane Heat was 5-2 morning line off a huge win with a 90 Beyer first off the claim for Gary Gullo; but was let off at 4-1 as the bettors went for El Tamberito, even money for Ramon and Anthony Dutrow, instead. Not nearly as dominant this time, but that's two-for-two and gross earnings of $42,000 since being claimed for 14K. Gullo continues to have a solid meet - now eight for 27, just under 30%; four winners and a neck loss with his last nine starters.

- Senate Republican leaders in Albany will, once again, show up for a public negotiating session, daring Democrats to try to reach agreement on a power sharing deal. Don't count on it; the Democrats didn't show up on Wednesday, and if they do on Thursday, they'll be greeted with the same tired assertion that June 8 happened and "needs to be recognized."

In a couple of interesting analyses, Danny Hakim of the Times asserts that the Republicans are in a "panic," in the face of a growing trend in the state towards the Democrats, as they try to undo the worst of what life in the minority party means in Albany. (In other words, to not be treated the way they themselves treated the Democrats during their 40 years as the majority.) But Tom Robbins writes in the Village Voice that it's a fear of the Democrats' progressive agenda which, though in fits and starts, was starting to move along, that is behind the GOP's desperation. Listen to the ridiculous lengths to which Senator Skelos will go to rationalize his position.

Of course, the Democrats are no better, insisting as they are that they had a quorom to pass over 100 bills on Tuesday when Republican Senator Frank Padavan took a short cut through the Senate chamber to get a Coke. Or maybe it was a V8. Or a cup of coffee? Some Democrats think he knew exactly what he was doing.
"Padavan had to know what he was doing," said [Sen. Diane] Savino. "They teach this to us on the first day -- as soon as the journal clerk sees you, you are marked present. Those are rookie mistakes." [Times Union]
And Democrats question why Padavan didn't simply notify the chamber that he was not present, as the rules permit him to do.

In any event, Padavan insists he was just passing through, and Governor Paterson says he won't sign the bills. He's keeping the Senate in town for the holiday weekend for their own, very special brand of fireworks.


Teresa said...

The NHL can do whatever it wants with Montreal, as long as it enables the team to take Scott Gomez off our payroll.

Looking forward to future exemptions for Redden, Roszival, and Drury.

Anonymous said...

So who would you hire as the jockey if you were fortunate enough to own MTB?

Since they want a four race commitment through the WV Derby, Travers, 3rd race to be named and BC Classic, Smith (Zenyatta), Leparoux (Einstein) and Desormeaux (Summer Bird) are not option.

Since the two main goals are presumable the Travers at the Spa and the BC Classic at SA, I would be seeking someone that rides at both venues so my first call would be to Garret Gomez, with Richie Migliore, believe it or not, my second choice due to his recent west coast riding stint.

Anonymous said...

NHL needs Montreal to be a perennial contendah, just as MLB needs the Bronx Bombers. The NHL without a strong Montreal franchise- or MLB without a strong NY Yankees franchise- is inconceivable to me.

I, too, would be first calling Garrett Gomez to take the mount on MTB, Kent Desormeaux second call. We still haven't replaced the recently retired bi-coastal big stakes race riders in Pat Day, Gary Stevens, and Jerry Bailey- and in an earlier era Chris McCarron, Shoemaker, Baeza, Pincay,Ycaza, et al.

Anonymous said...

Desormeux would actually be my top choice if not the regular rider of Summer Bird.