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Saturday, October 04, 2008

Baby Races

- Neither the morning oddsmaker (8-1) nor the betting public ($10.20) gave Vineyard Haven sufficient credit for his win over Cribnote in the Hopeful, but Frankel's colt left no doubt this time with his dominant win in the Champagne. This colt is undefeated and more or less unchallenged in his three fast track starts. He's also not nominated for the Breeders' Cup, and not likely to go, according to Frankel. "I don’t have to give back any purse money he won (in the Champagne) to go to the Breeders’ Cup, and I can run him in the Hollywood Futurity (gr.I) instead.”

After the Hopeful, Frankel, who owns the horse in partnership with, among others, Joe Torre (having a pretty nice week), wondered aloud if he would sell the colt. "I know we’re going to be getting some good offer.... I think we’ll keep him, but it depends.” We'll see about that after this race. No doubt it would be a handy return from whatever they paid for him after his debut win at Calder. And you never know, he's never been two turns, and may never be worth more than he is right now. Though on the other hand... Tough decision I'm sure, but I imagine there's far less potential for looking back with regret if you have the cash in the bank under a mattress somewhere

Hello Broadway was totally dead on the board at 8-1; that despite the fact that Imperial Council, who he defeated in his debut, won the second by 2 1/2 at odds of 1-2.

Steve Klesaris got some consolation in the Frizette a day after his Mani Bhavan crapped out around two turns as the 8-5 favorite in the Alcibiades, when Sky Diva ($13.20) took the Frizette. She was coming right out of a maiden special win in her first start. Like most everything else in the game, the Champagne and Frizette ain't what they used to be, more resembling NW1X allowance races as they do. Vineyard Haven was the only horse in either race who would not have been eligible for one. Sky Diva got a picture perfect Belmont trip, saving ground around the turn not far behind the leaders, and swinging out for her winning rally as they turned for home. The trainer said she's a strong possibility for the Breeders' Cup.

Sky Diva is by Sky Mesa, currently ranked second on the second year sire list. She is the stallion's second graded stakes winner in two days, with Skylighter having won the G2 Indiana Oaks on Friday night for Frankel, having a nice weekend too. He now has a solid six stakes winners on the year, and nine stakes wins; those are the highest total on the sophomore list. Sky Diva is out of an Unbridled mare who's a half-sister to G1 winner Pure Clan.

The Breeders Futurity at Keeneland was even more of a guessing game, with all but one of the contestants going two turns for the first time. Square Eddie ($20.20) won like a horse who really, truly likes two turns. Making his first US start, this colt absolutely powered away from this field in the stretch, getting the last 2 1/2 furlongs in 30.69 seconds. Very nice. This one is going to the Breeders' Cup for sure for owner J. Paul Reddam, and I wonder how the legal loan shark business is doing these days? Reddam bought this colt privately from his British owner just on Tuesday, and Doug O'Neill flew in to do the saddling honors. "The only thing I can do now is keep bringing [Reddam] drinks and do whatever I can not to piss him off, so I'll get the chance to do this again in three weeks."

Square Eddie is a Canadian-bred by Smart Strike, out of an El Gran Senor mare, and an interesting pedigree here. He's inbred, 4x4 to the prolific broodmare Smartaire, through the half brothers Smarten and Quadratic.

Well, kinda embarrassing that I singled out two Mott horses to bet against on Saturday, and they both won. Court Vision beat Gio Ponti in the Jamaica, and what can I say? Couldn't have been more wrong; and Thou Swell faded to last after setting an uncontested and slow pace. Successful Mission won that race at the Meadowlands at what I considered an extreme underlay of 2-1. But what the hell do I know?


Brett said...

Four words about the racing weekend...

Zarkava is a beast.

Best 3YO filly ever?

Jen R said...

Meanwhile, in this country, people are considering preventing fillies from running against colts "for the good of the sport".

Anonymous said...

After the Breeder's Cup the racing media can start agitating for a Zarkava-Curlin race, maybe in Dubai.