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Monday, July 09, 2007

Winner Forges His Own Path

- English Derby winner Authorized ran second in the Coral Eclipse Stakes on Saturday in one of the oddest races I've seen in quite some time. Watch (below) as Notnowcato, under the guidance of jockey Ryan Moore, steers all the way out to the far rail, along the stands side on the right-handed course. As Authorized and George Washington battled their way through and around horses from the back of the pack, Notnowcato and Moore, who walked the course earlier in the day and determined the stands side to be faster, were all by their lonesome on the outside. Greg Wood of the Guardian UK blasted the other riders for not being as diligent:

At Group One level, the most useful thing that a jockey can do is to avoid silly mistakes and make sure that a horse runs to its best form. No rider is capable of turning a handicapper into a champion. All they can do is to ensure that their mount gets from A to B as swiftly and efficiently as possible.

On this basis, it was not Moore's brilliance that won the day so much as the failure of his seven opponents to do their job. Firemen deserve praise and admiration when they rescue people from burning buildings, yet at the same time, it is only what they are paid to do. [Guardian UK]
Authorized overcame a slow pace that resulted when two Aidan O'Brian runners who initially rushed up to challenge Chempery, entered to insure a fast pace for Authorized, suddenly backed off and slowed down the rest of the pack, rendering the rabbit ineffective. The favorite's trainer Peter Chapple-Hyam said: "They were all out to get him beat and they succeeded." [] Still, Authorized fought through the field and "won" the main body of the race, just holding off George Washington. It shouldn't do anything to hurt Authorized's confidence. "The horse thinks he's won," Frankie Dettori said.

The King George is scheduled to be Authorized's next start, but it comes up a week from Saturday, and RTE Sport reports that he's not definite.

- Aldeberan has four winners from his first five starters. We've mentioned how he achieved his success on the racetrack at age five, but I guess it's worth pointing out that he won a seven furlong grass race in his only start at two. We mentioned Ascot Hall, his first winner, in this post. He's since had winners at Mountaineer, Prairie Meadows and Delaware. Halcyon, the winner at the latter and then 4th in the Astoria at Belmont, is out of a stakes winning Broad Brush mare, and is from the direct female family of the Haskell/Travers/Super Derby winner Wise Times.

- Another stakes winner for Patrick Biancone, who took the Cash Call with Lady of Valor Venice [thanks Kevin...I need to straighten up and get off that cobra venom] on Friday night, and then was fined $1500 for failing to declare that she would run on Lasix. However, the Form had the L in their pp's, so there didn't seem to be any harm to the public in this case. On Sunday in the Locust Grove, the rabbit tactic worked for Biancone, as 60-1 shot Countess Scala pressed Quite a Bride as Mauralakana stalked a couple of lengths behind and then rallied for the Grade 3 win.

- Lexington winner Distorted Reality (Distorted Humor) is the third foal of the broodmare Christy Love (Unbridled) to win a grass stakes. Atticus Kristy (Atticus) won the G3 Shakertown, and Fiery Dancer (Atticus) won the Pago Hop at Fair Grounds.

1 Comment:

Harl said...

Just fyi, that's Lady of Venice that was trained by Biancone that won the CashCall mile. That horse has been on my watch list since I saw her run at Keeneland awhile back and I doubt the "Cobra venom" had anything to do with her performance. She's one to watch down the road, I believe.

I've always been a big fan of Biancone and while this latest investigation is troubling, I don't let anything like that affect my wagering decisions. Until there are tougher sanctions in place and clearer rules on what is allowed and what's not, I'll continue to assume that all big-time trainers are circumventing the rules in some fashion.