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Monday, January 28, 2008

Monday Morning Notes - Jan 28

- Didn't get to Aqueduct until the fifth on Saturday, but saw some pretty terrific races there. In that fifth, Dynergy and Commander Matt were second to last and last respectively first time under the wire, but they were first and second at the finish, separated by a bare nose in a head-bobbing finish. It was a particularly cruel beat for those who had Commander Matt at 6-1, losing a most unfortuitous head bob as he was going on by the winner at the very end, ouch.

Lord Snowdon was dead last turning for home in the featured Paumonok Stakes before weaving through the field and catching a game front-running Man of Danger late; the $10.20 win price had me kicking myself. It's the first stakes win for this much improved five-year old half brother, by Seeking the Gold, to Mott's Derby prospect Court Vision, and he figures to be tough in this company here for the duration of the winter season.

The 9th race was another featuring a flying finish between two horses that had been far back - no inside speed bias at the Big A on this day. Ready Read got the nose decision with a well-timed late move by apprentice Carol Cedeno, who's ridden 10 winners from 105 mounts.

- Kiaran McLaughlin won the first on Sunday with Alyssa the Dancer and ran second in the next race with Shadwell first-timer Alzehba. The trainer is on quite a nice streak at the Big A, with a record of 8-2-2 with his last 19 starters. McLaughlin really seems to be loaded with talented, lightly-raced horses, and not only for the Sheikhs.

On Saturday, McLaughlin won a Laurel stakes with Wild Hoots, for owner Dell Ridge Farm. Mario Pino barely moved a muscle while wiring this field by 4 1/2. This four-year old daughter of Unbridled's Song sold for $900,000 as a yearling and started her career in the Mott barn. She looks to have really found a home on the dirt after five grass tries. She won her prior by 14 on the dirt at Philly; based on that effort, the bettors discounted her 4-1 morning line and made her the solid 6-5 choice on Saturday. Wild Hoots is out of a Storm Cat mare, and she's a full sister to Buddha, winner of the 2002 Wood Memorial. And speaking of great finishes....


Anonymous said...

I have never seen that race. What a finish. Gave me shivers watching it.
Thanks for posting

Anonymous said...

The TVG guy made a great case for Dynegy, showing his previous race and his come-from-behind running style.
I though the analysis was excellent.
Alan, I was on yesterday and I went into the archives to read your horse-ownership article.
That is about the best opening of an article that I ever read.
(In my whole life, I only have one that I think could rival it)

Anonymous said...

I stood to win $5,000 on Buddha had he won the Derby. Then he stepped on a rock or something the day before the Derby and was scratched. Ugh.

Btw Alan, you might mention a sneaky-type Derby prospect out on the West Coast right nopw by the name of Reflect Times. He's owned by Koji Maeda, the same guy who owned Sunday Break (shown running third in your Buddha video). Sunday Break was trained by Drysdale, while Reflect Times is trained by Shirreffs, but i believe both horses are/were Japan-breds. Shirreffs has been successful in getting recent trainees to the Derby, too.

PS - You might also take a look at Yankee Bravo, who won the California Derby yesterday. Interesting colt, that one.