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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Casino Drive

- Casino Drive had a semi-workout this morning, and officially received the services of Edgar Prado. Some people have asked me why I'm rooting against him in the Belmont; to the person who suggested that it's 'nationalism,' I can assure you that's not the case. It's just the way I feel, probably stemming from a desire to hold on to the little orderliness that might be left on the Triple Crown Trail. I'd always held hard and fast to all of the "rules," but have seen them slip away one by one. Barbaro winning off five weeks rest; Street Sense with two preps; Big Brown with three career starts. In that sense, Giacomo is probably the most logical Derby winner I've seen since I started writing this blog! A win by Casino Drive would just blow apart any sense of systemization that might still remain, and I guess I just don't want to see it go.

Besides, I think he's going to run out of the exacta. This can be your Say No To Casino (Drive) headquarters right here.


Casino Drive's first race. And so what if he won in ridiculously easy fashion! He wasn't even running in the right direction! :-/


Anonymous said...

Being the one who jokingly accused you of misguided nationalism, I'm just trying to get a better understanding for your anti Casino Drive sentiment. So, it apparently boils down to the two career starts? It obviously can't be the foreign angle since we've already seen GO AND GO absolutely rock Elmont back in 1990 when he slammed our THIRTY SIX RED by seven lengths, (with BARON DE VAUX at 65-1 completing the tri - I remember this b/c a young rotoperl had $2 to show on the Baron).

I have no problem with CASINO DRIVE winning. He obviously has royal bloodlines and he's shown himself to be the second fastest three year old in a short period of time.

I'm going to single him in multi race wagers if I can beat one other bad favorite on the races leading up to the Belmont. I think it will pay some nice balloons. But I'll be perfectly happy if the kind Mr Brown wins the crown. You have to wonder about that BOUNDARY on top at least a little bit, no?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the clip of Casino Drive's first race. What I find very strange is that I have been to the Tokyo race course twice and both times they ran the right way?? I would like an explanation on that if anyone had one. BTW I see no chance for this horse. See you next week.

Anonymous said...

Maybe it is time for more rules to change. Like, how about the rule that has us watch the sire line so carefully, since that is easy to do, with great statistical accuracy as a result of sires with many many offspring. It has been difficult to award a "dam line" the same attention if for no other reason than there are fewer data points to rely on.

Instead of bemoaning the end of the reliable "rules" as we know them, how about thinking of 2008 as the dawn of the new era, one in which Better than Honour steps into racing history as the mother of three out of three foals in a row to win the Belmont. What if Casino Drive is just the third shred of evidence in the case for his mother to be the female Native Dancer of the next century.

Why not? With all of our statistical simulation software, and hypothetical breeding internet sites, maybe it's time to let go of the old rules and be open to some new ones.

Just a thought.

Alan Mann said...

>>Instead of bemoaning the end of the reliable "rules" as we know them, how about thinking of 2008 as the dawn of the new era, one in which Better than Honour steps into racing history as the mother of three out of three foals in a row to win the Belmont.

I think that it's already pretty amazing for the same dam to have horses running in three straight Belmonts, no less winning. If Casino Drive wins, believe me, I'll be leading the cheerleading for Better Than Honour.

Look, I have nothing against the horse or its connections, and certainly nothing against his mom. But I feel like it all just seems too easy. Has the vaunted Test of Champions really become as simple as this? Get a son of daughter of Better Than Honour, and you barely even have to race at all? It's like he just jumped in at the quarter pole, as Trevor Denman might say.

I have no idea really how he's going to run, and I'm partially having some fun with you guys. I don't recall too many horses that have attracted the following that this one has, before he had even run here! This horse has been anointed as a prime Belmont contender ever since he stepped off the plane it seems.

I think that the elder rotoperl might be overestimating what kind of price he'll get on Casino Drive. I'm thinking that he's going to get a lot of attention at the mutuels, and be a very strong second choice to Big Brown. But can we really just assume that he's going to get this distance in this race, just the third of his career, based on his pedigree? How about the influence of his sire, who didn't become a stakes winner until he was four, and whose progeny thus far have been slow to develop? We know the history of the distaff side, but that doesn't guarantee anything. When he rounds that second turn and sees the long stretch still ahead, none of us can really say what will happen. So I think that, if I'm right about the odds, I have to oppose him on value, and look to make money with Big Brown on top of some others.

Anonymous said...


i left this under the "Cracked" posting but thought I'd repost here as it seems like a more appropriate spot. hope that's ok.

i think casino drive winning the belmont would be more of a reflection on japanese training methods than the state of the game in the u.s.

his preparation seems similar to the european training we've seen for years in which 2 yo's have a race or two (yes i know casino drive didn't start at 2) and then are brought back at three and go straight into a race like the 1,000 guineas or the epsom derby with one or even no preps.

would a horse like casino drive be looked at differently if o'brien, weld or fabre brought him from europe? i guess he probably wouldn't be 2 for 2 on dirt:)

i'd add that japanese connections seem to be pretty good when targeting a foreign race. they've run 1-2 in the melbourne cup in 2006, won the american oaks and won the dubai duty free.

thanks again for a superb blog
cheers, chris