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  1. #1
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    Horse Racing Random Random

    I wanted to start a separate thread for this because I know not everyone, and for very good reasons, is interested in horse racing.

    But one of American Pharoah's first daughters made some noise today at Keeneland--Sweet Melania. This was a royal asskicking. By winning this race, Sweet Melania gets direct entry into the 2019 Breeder's Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf race. But note, this was a Grade II race; she'll be facing Grade I juvenile filly winners at the Breeder's Cup. That will be interesting.

    FUN FACT: Her pedigree is the first time I have EVER seen a racehorse linebred to Storm Cat (https://www.pedigreequery.com/sweet+melania). My understanding is that people generally avoid linebreeding to Storm Cat because he had structural defects in his knees that required surgery. Nonetheless, he is the ONLY sire who shows up in both of the 4-generation pedigrees for the last two Triple Crown winners (American Pharoah and Justify).

    ANOTHER FUN FACT: American Pharoah's first sons and daughters are doing pretty well--not just on dirt but also on turf. American Pharoah never bothered to race on turf. But if this is any indication, Europe will be flying mares over left and right to be covered by Pharoah.

    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  2. #2

    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    I will only joke because I know nothing about horse racing.
    So:
    To be COVERED by Pharaoh? COVERED? What a nice euphemism.
    Covered in what?
    "Well, neigh!!!, I showered her with roses, bought her a wonderful meal of carrots and then, took her to my place and I covered her. I am a Pharaoh, after all!"

    I guess that since it is horse racing, the verb MOUNT is already used for other things.
    Face it. It's the apocalypse.

  3. #3
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    Leading up to the Breeder's Cup (about 3 weeks away), I am focusing mostly on the 2-year-olds because it is so incredibly fascinating. Why is it fascinating?

    We have two freshman sires that are making a good bit of noise. I mentioned American Pharoah, sire of Sweet Melania in post 1. Also making things interesting is another freshman sire, Constitution, a son of Tapit (who is a son of Pulpit, who is a son of A.P. Indy, and has been ranked the #1 thoroughbred sire in North America).

    But in the race below from last weekend, the star is Maxfield. A son of 2007 Kentucky Derby and Travers Stakes winner, Street Sense, by a Bernardini (A.P. Indy son) mare, https://www.pedigreequery.com/maxfield2, Maxfield came way off the pace to overtake 1 son of American Pharoah, 2 sons of Constitution, and 2 sons of Tapit--to completely obliterate the field. This victory means he also gets direct entry into the Breeder's Cup Juvenile (a separate race from the Juvenile Turf races that's run on dirt) that generally establishes the early front runner for next year's Kentucky Derby.

    The horse in a distant second, Gouverneur Morris, was one of the Constitution sons.

    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  4. #4

    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    I am so happy that this thread wasn't created due to anything due to Santa Anita

  5. #5
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    Quote Originally Posted by fastbackss View Post
    I am so happy that this thread wasn't created due to anything due to Santa Anita
    We'll get to that eventually. The death tolls is now over 30 horses at Santa Anita this year, and police had to be called over last weekend to monitor clashes between protesters over the most recent death the day before.

    BTW, they're running all of this year's Breeder's Cup races at Santa Anita. When I have a minute, I'll try to figure out whose bright idea THAT was...
    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  6. #6

    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    It's one thing to be self-aware and another to be consciously ignorant.
    Amazing what $$$ will to to sway decisions.

  7. #7
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    About Santa Anita... Last I read, most theories focused on the tracks as the likely common denominator. Which, of course, was quite frightening. But I found this piece from late June after the Breeder's Cup announced they were sticking with Santa Anita for the 2019 races. I read the full Breeder's Cup statement before reading this. Of note, see the bolded part. This is the first time I have seen any suggestion that trainers may be, in large part, the common denominator. In addition, I have absolutely no idea what "reforms" they are talking about.

    ::

    Breeders' Cup is going to stay at Santa Anita this year, despite spotlight on horse deaths

    Thoroughbred racing's year-end championships will happen as scheduled at Southern California's Santa Anita Park in November, despite a recent spotlight on racehorse deaths at the park, the event's board of directors said Thursday.

    The 2019 Breeders' Cup World Championships are scheduled for November 1-2 at Santa Anita, one of the most famous horse racing parks in the United States.

    The park has come under heightened scrutiny after 30 horses died there since December. The state horse racing board is investigating trainers to see if they played a role in the deaths, and is working with prosecutors into whether unlawful conduct or conditions affected the horses.

    But the Breeders' Cup board unanimously decided to keep the championships at the park this year after noting "meaningful and effective reforms and best practices have been implemented in recent months at Santa Anita," the event's president said.

    "We fully embrace those reforms and will devote our time and energy in the coming months to further advance those efforts," Craig Fravel, Breeders' Cup president and CEO, said. "We look forward to showing the world the best in thoroughbred racing at one of its finest venues."

    The event is considered one of the sport's biggest and richest, with about $28 million in prizes doled out across the event's 14 races last year.

    This will be the 10th time in the 36-year history of the Breeders' Cup World Championships the event will be held at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, just northeast of Los Angeles.

    The park's regular racing season ended Sunday.

    https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/28/us/ca...rnd/index.html
    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  8. #8

    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    Another horse has died...

    New York Daily News
    @NYDailyNews
    Satchel Paige, a 3-year-old gelding, was put down after fracturing his left front ankle during a race, officials said.

    He was the 34th horse to die at Santa Anita since December.
    https://www.nydailynews.com/news/nat...w3e-story.html
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




  9. #9
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    Quote Originally Posted by Ti-Amie View Post
    I saw that race. He was in the back of the pack and hadn't started to really run yet. I saw him pull up, but he was soon off screen. Of course, TVG, whose commentators always say "We'll report back to you on the horse's condition as soon as we know", provided no update. They did, however, report that the jockey walked off the track under his own power.

    Keeneland does a daily incident report that is posted online as soon a the day's races are over. (I know that because there was a fatal incident there last weekend, I believe. I saw that race, too... The jockey got tossed over the finish line, but the horse didn't cross the wire. That race was on turf.) But I could not find anything similar at the Santa Anita site.

    I'd like to know how many of these horses who died or were euthanized after being on the Santa Anita main dirt track. I'd also like to know how many of them were geldings. Satchel Paige was a gelding, and geldings rarely benefit from veterinary heroics.
    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  10. #10
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    I found a NY Times piece that listed the first 30 horses that died at Santa Anita starting in December (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/06/s...se-deaths.html). The last of those died on June 22. So that's 30 between December 2018 and June 2019 and 4 since then.

    From the writeups memorializing the first 30 horses, at least 13 of those horses were geldings. Some of the horses had never raced but died during or after workouts. And I did not know that two horses actually died in the SAME RACE. That was on January 4.
    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  11. #11

    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    I can't like your posts but it gets curiouser and curioser.
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




  12. #12
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    I'd also like to know how the insurance side of things works in thoroughbred horse racing. How big of an insurance payout can you get for a 3-year-old gelding that's earned, say, $10K in racing and has up to 4 or 5 years of racing years ahead of him. I would bet it is fairly common for a gelding in particular to reach a point (e.g., career-threatening or life-threatening injury) where he's worth more dead than alive.

    In the NY Times piece I posted earlier, it mentioned Battle of Midway, one of the horses that died at Santa Anita early in the year:

    "FEB. 23

    Battle of Midway died after a timed workout. In 2017, he was third in the Kentucky Derby and won the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile. He had been retired as a stallion but was ineffective getting mares pregnant. Battle of Midway returned to the racetrack and, three weeks earlier, had won the San Pasqual Stakes at Santa Anita. He was bought for $410,000 as a yearling and was trained by Hollendorfer."

    Earlier in the piece, it states that Hollendorfer has been banned from Santa Anita. So, I ask, is it possible Battle of Midway, who was apparently sterile but purchased as a yearling for $410K, was worth more dead than alive?
    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  13. #13
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    Meanwhile, back to the Breeder's Cup, which is just days away and will be run at Santa Anita. Many of the world's premier thoroughbreds are arriving in Santa Anita, and no one among the connections of these horses is expressing any concern at all. If I had a horse who qualified for a Breeder's Cup race, especially one on dirt, I would be petrified. And personally, I would not even consider chancing it.

    [EDIT: I deleted this part of my original post because it had an error.]

    ::

    One other thing to note: Did anyone notice in the NY Times piece that almost all of the geldings who died at Santa Anita were euthanized on the track or in the barn while almost all of the fillies and mares who died were euthanized at nearby equine veterinary facilities? That can't be a freaky coincidence.
    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

  14. #14

    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    Follow the money.
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




  15. #15
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    Re: Horse Racing Random Random

    Meanwhile, another 2-year old American Pharoah son, Homeland (American Pharoah x a Lemon Drop Kid mare), just won his opener in the second race this afternoon at Belmont Park. The distance was a 1 1/16 miles, and again, on turf.

    And just like Sweet Melania, whose next race will be on Friday as part of the Breeder's Cup weekend at Santa Anita, Homeland is linebred back to Storm Cat (https://www.pedigreequery.com/homeland10). It looks like that breeding strategy might work out pretty well.
    Winston, a.k.a. Alvena Rae Risley Hiatt (1944-2019), RIP

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