Barbaro Updates: 758
Posted December 29, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4425: A pleasant morning's work at Oaklawn, and it did not rain! We had seven sets, five before the break and two after the break. Two also did a little gate schooling and were very good. All in all an easy morning's work. The track is getting busier, as we get closer to the meet opening in a little over a week. And there are some jockeys and agents who are starting to ship in to get ready for the meet.
Here is yesterday's OLEX report: OLEX January 6th, 2009.
Update 4424: The business of horse racing suffered a steep decline last year with it's major source of income dropping more than 7%. While the economy had an impact, internal issues were also to blamw: Total U.S. Handle Lowest in a Decade.
Many racing media folks are sadly being laid off as media coverage of racing is in decline. Claire Novak is one who was effected: Words on a Page - by Claire Novak.
Update 4423: A late morning update today as after work I headed out to Conway, north of Little Rock, to attend a livestock auction. I wanted to see how many horses went through and the prices. The answer, very few, a handful of ponies, one donkey and a nice looking palamino. The prices were very cheap though and there were a few more horses in the parking lot that I saw that did not go through the ring. A little odd.
Work this morning was light. I only had four sets, all went nicely and it was good we had a short morning since as soon as we were finished it started to rain, again! This is a pretty wet area! On my way back from the auction I got my license. All in all a busy, but good day.
Update 4422: Superfecta here, with your regular weekly update.
With the arrival of the new year comes the knowledge that it's never too early to start thinking about the Derby trail (although the last time I backed a horse in January - a certain Smarty Jones - indeed, the victory did come to pass). I can't say I'm bowled over by anyone yet, but a large part of my lack of enthusiasm (so far) for this crop is that many of them have been saddled with terrible, terrible names.
Spectacular Bid winner Notonthesamepage is aiming for the Fountain of Youth, Majormotionpicture is likely to return in the San Rafael, and poor Pioneerof the Nile is getting some buzz, but is stuck with that awful moniker. I'd like to see the Jockey Club ban run-on names before worrying about possible naughtiness - especially since they rarely seem capable of noting such things anyway.
One horse I do like is The Pamplemousse (Mary Forney has a nice photo of him on her site today) - even though I am not a fan of grapefruit in general, I do very much approve of this name, which I can only assume is a tip of the hat to the fine Divine Comedy b-side. (That's certainly the only explanation that makes sense in my brain).
On the whole, however, many of the new 3-year-olds look awfully sprinty to me; former claimer Loch Dubh also fits that profile, although again, he's got a name I actually like - no doubt because I watched far too much Hamish Macbeth in the 1990s. (For the uninitiated, the show starred Robert Carlyle as a pot-friendly policeman in a remote Scottish village called Lochdubh).
One wonders if Midshipman and Vineyard Haven heading to Dubai to train will be something of a useful distraction for Team Godolphin - it seems that construction on the new Meydan racecourse will be slowed, as both firms contracted to work on it have been canned. We'll see how that goes.
I'm rather doubtful we've seen the best of this crop yet (unless we include Stardom Bound - I'm not holding her newish dubious owners against her, and I'm looking forward to her likely start in the Las Virgenes); if recent patterns hold, this year's Derby winner has yet to break his (or her) maiden.
In the meantime, while these youngsters are figuring out where they belong, we've got the return of Brass Hat to look forward to. Here's hoping he's still got it.
Update 4421: Paulick Report assesses it's readers opinions: YOU'VE GOT OPINIONS!.
Update 4420: Nicanor, Barbaro's 3yo full brother, worked 5/8ths this moring on the turf at Palm Meadows: Nicanor Posts Turf Workout.
Update 4419: Just a wet cold and grotty morning this morning at Oaklawn. I was on jogging duty mostly, which suited me fine. It was one of those mornings that you could not wait to get back to your flat, have a hot shower and throw all your clothes in the wash. And that is what I have just done!
Rod helped with Clever Allemont, volunteering his truck and shipping him to Old Friends. This is what he had to say about the experience: Clever Allemont's Miracle.
Update 4418: Some very cool pictures of Clever Allemont at Old Friends posted to our Facebook Group.
Gina Rarick, a US national training in France, provides some interesting insights on the success of racing in France: SOLUTIONS FROM ACROSS THE POND.
Update 4417: A warm start to the morning at Oaklawn Park, but as the morning progressed it got progressively cooler! We had seven sets. A bunch of our horses worked today. Mine all galloped, and galloped nicely. It did seem a pretty incident free morning. I got chatting briefly to another rider out there who I thought I recognized. Turned out she worked for John Kimmel at Fair Hill a few years ago. I freelanced for John Kimmel. Small racing world.
Update 4416: A nice win a New York yesterday for Steve Asmussen as Haynesfield won his third consecutive race: Haynesfield Scores in Count Fleet. And it was nice to see Delightful Kiss win the opening feature at Gulfstream Park: Delightful Kiss Stays Hot in Hal's Hope.
Update 4415: Clever Allemont is settling in well at Old Friends: Clever Allemont's Miracle.
Update 4414: Another very pleasant morning's work at Oaklawn. The temperatures were in mid 60s which made things even more enjoyable. We had seven sets, five before the break and two after the break. All mine galloped nicely. That being said, the buzzer seemed pretty busy this morning, so I guess there were a few loose horses! There were also a few people in the grandstand area watching the morning exercise.
More coverage of Clever Allemont, including a video: Horse saved from slaughter was bred to win.
Update 4413: Steve Haskin wraps up 2008: Out With the Old.
Nicanor appears to be progressing well towards his debut: Nicanor progressing toward highly anticipated debut, excerpt:
"He hadn't broken from the gate in a while," Matz said. "He is quite good at the gate and he's doing fine. If everything continues to go well he should be starting at the end of the month."
And today Gulfstream Park's meet opens: New look for Gulfstream meet.
Update 4412: Clever Allemont has arrived at Old Friends.
There will be a press conference tomorrow: Clever Allemont En Route to Old Friends.
Update 4411: I missed this, but The Rail, which I participated in this spring, received an Honorable Mention for an Eclipse award in the Audio and Multi-Media Internet category: Courier-Journal Takes Internet Eclipse.
Update 4410: Another very pleasant morning's work here at Oaklawn. We had seven sets for Steve. Five before the break and two after the break. All mine galloped nicely. The track was busier this morning, it seems a few more outfits shipped in over the last couple of days. And there was a bit a trauma after the break, as one rider was laid out right by the "off gap". I think his horse had flipped over backwards on top of him. He was laid out for a while, but I think he was OK.
Once I had finished I sought out trainer Lynn Whiting and introduced myself. He was the first trainer of Clever Allemont, who is currently on route to Old Friends. We had a pleasant chat about Clever Allemont and his time as a racehorse in Lynn's care. Lynn was also aware of the rescue, he had read about it on the internet. A very cool chat.
And a "pinhooker" e-mailed me about applying stickers to Jockey Club papers in order to make it known she would want to take the horse back if it ever needed a home. Very cool!
Update 4409: Final tallies of the leaders of 2008: Asmussen, Gomez Top 2008 Leaders.
Update 4408: A day off for the New Year!
A terrific look back in time when Clever Allemont, recently found in a kill pen, won the Rebel Stakes: Clever Allemont's Miracle.
Update 4407: Happy New Year! I will conclude 2008 at ABR with the following: CULTURE OF THE HORSE.
Update 4406: A very pleasant morning's work at Oaklawn Park this morning. It was a litle crisp, but bright sunshine. We had seven sets. Five before the break and two after the break. All mine went nicely, which also included a couple of gate schoolers. I am starting to get to know my fellow riders at Steve's (there are six of us) and they seem like a very good group of people. Fun too.
This is pretty dismal, but this is what happens when a horse industry collapses: Racehorses sold for meat as Quebec race industry comes up lame.
Update 4405: As is usual for this time of year, racing news is light. Thankfully my friends who continue to frequent OLEX each Tuesday keep us updated with the happenings at the auction: Horsemen for Humanity.
Update 4404: Superfecta here, with your regular weekly update - in this case, with your top stories of 2008:
Performance of the Year: Zarkava
Simply the best. Imagine what she could have accomplished at 4 - oh well.
The Reigning Champ: Curlin
An easy Dubai World Cup win, a turf experiment, a broken earnings record - it was great to see him running at four.
Most Underrated Horse Out There: Einstein
Einstein has been forced to carry a lot more than most horses for the past few years - his complicated legal situation kept him running in some races for which he was ready to go, he was forced to switch from turf to dirt a few times and he even took on former stablemate Curlin. Each time, he gave it his all and proved a consistent threat - and often a winner. Here's hoping we see him back as a 7-year-old - but with better owners (although still with trainer Helen Pitts, please).
Breeders' Cup: Zenyatta and the Euros
Zenyatta's easy victory only added to her illustrious year; Goldikova showed everyone what she's capable of when Zarkava isn't in front of her and the European contenders spanked their American counterparts at almost every opportunity. While the surface was the source of much griping by the defeated American contingent, I think the no-drug policy played nearly as a large a role - and that's a good thing. I would also suggest that 'Zenyatta and the Euros' could be a great name for a Katrina and the Waves cover band.
Most Column Inches Generated: Big Brown
Way back in early 2008, when newspapers still covered racing, they knew they had a story. You may recall the heartwarming tale of a horse with bad feet from the wrong side of the tracks who was discovered by some Wall Street errand boys; after turning him over to a trainer desperately trying to overcome his inglorious, drug-filled past, they won the Triple Crown. Or something like that. I can't quite remember at this far remove.
So, there you have it - I recommend breaking out an Avery Ale to the Chief or Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale (if you can snag one) for your New Year's celebration - here's to a great racing year in 2009!
Update 4403: A day off today! Now to plan something.
Fair Grounds, which has stopped shippers from racing during it's last two race days due to an outbreak of equine herpes, has lifted the ban as it continues to manage the out break: Shippers to Resume at Fair Grounds.
Update 4402: Barbaro's 2yo full brother, Nicanor, worked 3/8ths yesterday at Palm Meadows in 36.5: Latest Work.
Update 4401: A chilly 29 degrees in Hot Springs this Monday morning!
In order to gain the attention of the Obama administration regarding the horse slaughter issue I am asking everyone to please sign the following petition:
Posted by Alex at 11:49 AM
| Comments (378)
Barbaro Updates: 757
Posted December 24, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4400: Optimistic reports for both Garrett Gomez (who was unseated from his 2yo mount in the seventh race yesterday at Santa Anita) and Indyanne: Sanra Anita Press Release.
Update 4399: Another pleasant morning's work at Oaklawn. Although it was chilly. Chillier than Toronto, Philadelphia, Manchester (UK) and Vancouver. I checked on my iPhone! At least there is no rain, and it looks like it is now warming up a little. We had seven sets, five before the break and two after the break. A few of mine galloped two miles, so a little bit tiring for me after having a couple of weeks off recently! I also met someone who I used to freelance with a little bit at Fair Hill. Betsy is now assistant for Bob Holtus. We kind of recognized each other, but it took my horse to be a little on his toes coming home for a coversation to start up!
Update 4398: Indian Blessing capped her year off by winning the Grade 1 La Brea Stakes at Santa Anita yesterday. Indyanne was injured in the same race: Indian Blessing Claims Marred La Brea.
Fabulous Strike also finished his year off on a winning note on the Aqueduct inner turf: Fabulous Strike Hits Gravesend Target.
Update 4397: D. Wayne Lukas, who I now see each morning at Oaklawn Park, picks Curlin for Horse of the Year: Curlin, no doubt, is D. Wayne Lukas' choice for Horse of the Year.
Found on Paulick Report.
Update 4396: The rain held off at Oaklawn Park this morning, until after the break. And then we got wet, but at least it remains warm in the high sixties. Seven sets again, this time four before the break and three after the break. All mine galloped nicely. Another easy morning's work as I start to get to know a few more people here and horses in the barn!
Update 4395: Bob Black Jack set the pace and held on comfortably to win yesterday's Malibu on opening day at Santa Anita. In doing so he beat Into Mischief (second), Georgie Boy (third) and Colonel John: Bob Black Jack Deals a Winner in Malibu.
Update 4394: More coverage on the rescue of Clever Allemont, winner of the 1985 Rebel Stakes: Clever Allemont saved from slaughter.
Update 4393: Santa Anita Park opens for racing today and the feature is the Malibu: Colonel John Tops Malibu Field.
Update 4392: Old Friends lost Ruhlmann on Christmas Eve.
Update 4391: A pleasant morning's work this morning at Oaklawn. Seven sets, five before the break and two after the break. All mine went nicely. Not so for everyone on the track. I heard the "buzzer" (can't really call it a siren) go off twice. I also saw someone "step off" a horse as it shied away from horses on the outside rail. One thing about this track here, it is quite narrow. Especially narrow when it's busy!
And Kauto Star won his third King George in emphatic fashion: KING KAUTO STARS AGAIN..
Update 4390: It's Boxing Day. Traditionally a day of great sports in the UK, highlighted by the King George Steeplechase at Kempton. Kauto Star attempts to win it today for the third consecutive year: CHRISTMAS STAR TO SHINE AGAIN.
Update 4389: Merry Christmas! The track here at Oaklawn is closed, so no training today.
Paulick Report presents it's top stories for 2008, based on viewership. The sad reality of this list is not one of the stories is about a horse: PAULICK REPORT 2008: WE REPORTED, YOU DECIDED..
Update 4388: An excellent story of the recent rescue of Clever Allemont, who at 27 years of age was stood in a kill pen awaiting his fate. He is now scheduled to go to Old Friends shortly after christmas: Happy trails again; aging horse rescued.
You can read the discussion here: WR URGENT! HELP AGED TB STALLION.
Story found on Paulick Report.
Update 4387: I forgot to add, we do have a star in our barn at Oaklawn. His name is ... Poncho!
Update 4386: A nice straightforward day to be galloping for the first day galloping after a break of a little more than two weeks! We had seven sets. All mine were new horses to me. But they all galloped nicely nonetheless. The track was sloppy at Oaklawn, after all the rain we have had. I recognized one or two people from the Houston meet last winter, but I don't think there is anyone here I really know. Time to meet new people!
Update 4385: According to my new toy (iPhone) it's 63 degrees (F) outside this morning at Oaklawn Park, so let's hope the track is open for training! Of course I have the Toronto weather handy too, where it is a balmy 32 degrees. While I am no longer able to attend the OLEX auction at Kitchener, in Ontario, it's great to still get the reports, and here is the report from yesterday: OLEX SALE Dec 23rd 2008.
And here is the reason Chantal Sutherland left the Woodbine meet early: Animal Planet to Air 'Jockeys' TV Series.
Posted by Alex at 11:42 AM
| Comments (175)
Barbaro Updates: 756
Posted December 18, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4384: The Jackson's make a significant donation to Anna House, the Belmont Child Care Association: Barbaro Owners Donate to Track Charity.
Update 4383: Superfecta here, with your regular weekly update.
With the holidays upon us, there is not a huge amount going on in the racing world for the next few weeks. With that in mind, I will most likely spend the next few weeks ruminating on matters historical. An article on the Belair Stables Museum in Maryland got me wondering about the earliest thoroughbreds imported to the US (or, more accurately, the Maryland and Virginia colonies as they were at that time). While horses in general were obviously imported to the Americas from the 16th century (initially by the Spanish) and the 17th century by English settlers, the first horses imported with a view toward racing arrived in the mid-18th century.
Governor Samuel Ogle imported stallion Spark and mare Queen Mab in 1747; the horses were a gift of Charles Calvert, the fifth Lord Baltimore - he was simply re-gifting the pair (a gesture which seems appropriate at this time of year), having received them from Frederick, Prince of Wales (perhaps best known as the father of George III). Benjamin Tasker, Jr. added to the reputation of what had become known as Belair Stud with the importation of Selima in the early 1750s. You may recall that the Selima Stakes for 2-year-old fillies on grass was named in her honor (and it seems a shame that a former G1 event, won by the likes of La Prevoyante and Shuvee, was so unceremoniously retired - see Brooklyn Backstretch for a similar sentiment about the Ladies Handicap at Aqueduct).
Virginia got into the game early as well; Jolly Roger (pictured here) was imported in 1751 and became an important broodmare sire; the speedy Janus came in 1756 and produced many quarter-mile specialists (although he himself had had success at the four-mile distance). Janus, by a sire also named Janus, went by a number of names to differentiate himself from the older horse (on the rare occasions when anyone seemed to care about that; early record-keeping was not entirely scrupulous) - he was also know as Little Janus or, for some reason, Stiff Dick - one imagines the Jockey Club would have many litters of kittens about such a moniker today). Size and stamina were imported to Virginia in the form of Fearnaught (imported 1764), a four-mile specialist; five of his daughters are considered American foundation mares. The four-mile distance was seen as somewhat unique to what was becoming American racing at that point:
"While there were contests at four miles and even at four miles and repeat in England, such events were not considered the true test of merit in a horse; that kind of racing became really American, since for seventy-five years the four-mile-heat horse was the king of his day."
It's rather a change from today.
Virginia was also responsible for importing the great Diomed in 1798, aged about 21 at the time - he would become the pre-eminent sire of early American racing.
But it wasn't just the South doing all the early importation; James De Lancey in New York was at work somewhat later, but with no less influential horses. Wildair and Lath (imported in the mid-to-late 1760s) were both useful stallions, but the Cub Mare, know as 'the Selima of the Northern turf' had perhaps the biggest impact. Her daughter with Wildair, Maria Slamerkin (aka Old Slamerkin) became one of the first great racing stars in New York. Their descendants include Black Gold and Nearco. Wildair was sold and sent back to Britain where he continued his stud career when Tory De Lancey dispersed his stock.
Some very interesting, if not entirely accurate, information on early American racing and breeding can be found in The American Thoroughbred, by Charles E. Trevathan, published in 1905 - now available on Google Books. Enjoy!
Update 4382: Drizzling rain, and some freezing rain here at Oaklawn Park. The track remained closed this morning. I did ride one in the shedrow. A filly we had up at Woodbine. She was nice and quiet. A brief morning's work, and now to get out of this motel room and move into a condo!
Update 4381: Thoroughbred Times assesses 2008 in light of Eight Belles tragic breakdown: 'Eight' was enough.
Oaklawn's track is supposed to open at 9 am for training this morning!
Update 4380: Nice to see Scrappy T, who was second in Afleet Alex's Preakness, in a nice retirement situation: Retired from racing, Scrappy T settles here.
Found on Paulick Report.
Update 4379: Sliding down: Second Thoughts - Boule d'Or Wins One For Long Run, it begins:
Reading the Form for Thursday's 6th race at Hollywood Park caused me quite the double-take. Smack dab in the middle of a $12.5K claimer was Boule d'Or - winner of the G2 San Luis Rey Handicap in March of this year at Santa Anita. Immediately, I started to wonder if maybe this copy of the DRF was put together in the wrong order - how could a graded winner drop so far so fast?
Update 4378: A chilly 16 degrees (F) at Oaklawn this morning. The track was closed so no training. I hung out at the barn for an hour or two. Saw a few familiar horses from Woodbine. But was glad to leave to warm up a little!
Update 4377: I received the following e-mail from a friend of mine who used to work at Fair Hill, and now has a small ranch in Texas. I am copying here with her permission:
Here are my thoughts on the horse slaughter industry. I think it's great what you are doing but I don't think starting at the end of the chain is the place to make a difference. It needs to start before conception! It starts with irresponsible breeding practices for one thing. There are way too many people out there that think just because a horse has nuts or a uterus that it deserves the right to pro-create. Since I'm not in the thoroughbred industry anymore, I see this on a much broader picture with all breeds. I think there needs to be some sort of tax that horse owners have to pay every time they breed these horses that goes into a fund to take care of horses in their old age. Kinda like social security or medicare for horses. I, as a breeder, would have no problem paying a fee like this to know my horses are going to be cared for down the line no matter where they go. That's why I'm so damn horse poor! I can't sell my horses to anyone that I'm not completely confident is going to do right by my horses down the line. I also think that all unregistered horses should either have to be fixed or pay a heavier tax. Not because I think they are or can't be good horses, it's just that an unregistered horse has a better chance of having a rough life and ending up in slaughter houses. Call it prejudism or as I like to call it 'profiling'. The people that allow unregistered horses to breed are usually the ones that don't care down the line what happens to their horses and usually they don't have the money to care for them properly. When I acquire a new horse it's nice to be able to research everywhere they've been and what they've done in their life. These are just my thoughts and I could keep going on and on about this issue.
p.s My horses are NOT livestock! They are companions! I get so pissed every year when I fill out 10 pages of forms to the USDA and they want to know my 'livestock' count. I don't have any livestock, damnit!
Now to Oaklawn Park.
Update 4376: Caught up with Hank, who is also working at Oaklawn for Steve. He was my boss at Woodbine. He gave me a quick tour of the backside. I hope I can find our barn in the morning! It is cold here, and the track won't open until 9am tomorrow if it opens at all.
Update 4375: Alex again called to ask me to do another update and to say that he has just arrived in Hot Springs, AR and Oaklawn where he'll be working. If anyone has ever seen his truck you'll understand and share my sentiments that you're relieved he made it safe and sound!
Yesterday, Hollywood Park ran the Cashcall Futurity (G1). The two year old favorite and Baffert trained Pioneer of the Nile beat out 10 other 2 yr olds in an exciting win: Pioneer of the Nile Rolls to Futurity Win
It seems like this is one of many to watch as we work our way towards the Derby.
Update 4374: Alex called me this morning and asked if I could do the morning update. It seems he's getting a bit of a late start on his drive to Arkansas! Drive safely Alex!
Asmussen trained horses Storm Treasure and Jimmy Simms each won their stakes races at the Fair Grounds yesterday: Jimmy Simms Among Standouts at Fair Grounds
Both Storm Treasure and Jimmy Simms had been at Woodbine with Alex. Here is a photo I shot of Alex exercising Jimmy Simms
Update 4373: After leaving the Kentucky Equine Humane Center yesterday afternoon I headed over to Keeneland to catch up with Gerry, who got me my Keeneland job during the Fall 2007 meet. He was in good form. I then headed over to Old Friends. Michael Blowen was in his usual great form. We jumped into one of the golf carts and he proceeded to show me around while yelling hellos to his horses and feeding them treats.
The highlight for me was meeting Syphonizer, who had recently been claimed and was now happily retired to a life well deserved. And watching Michael playing what could only be called 'hide and seek' with Ogygian. I am guessing this one-eyed star might be Michael's favorite. Michael also showed me the new 40 acres they have, and we finished up at his christmas party he was hosting for his volunteers. A very cool day for sure! I then drove to Louisville where I am now spending the day.
Update 4372: A great day on Friday spent in Lexington. I had lunch with Kerry, who runs thoroughbred brief. I then went to visit the Kentucky Equine Humane Center. Oddly I was chatting away in a stall with a mare I had seen being sold at New Holland on Monday. It was very cool to see her. She looked very relaxed after her recent experiences. I also learned that they are getting quite a few horses directly from the tracks in Kentucky, specifically Turfway Park. While I was there a vet was assessing new horses and x rays were being taken. A busy place and a great service to the horse community in Kentucky.
Next update will include my visit to Old Friends.
Update 4371: There are new photos of Nicanor which can be found on his blog: Tracking Barbaro's Brothers: Nice Nicanor Photos!
Update 4370: A Miami television station will be doing a feature news story on Barbaro's full brother Nicanor tonight at 11pm and again on the 21st: Miami TV Station to Feature Nicanor
Update 4369: What a year for Steve: Asmussen Reflects on Record 600 Wins.
Now to do some visiting, which should include Old Friends.
Update 4368: A very interesting look at the business model of horse racing and the "tension" between host tracks which put on the show and the "bet takers": PRIORITY 1: RACING'S BUSINESS MODEL.
I am now in Midway, Kentucky.
Update 4367: The Breeders' Cup has reverse their initial course to suspend their stakes supplement program after an outcry from the breeders: Breeders' Cup Restores Stakes Program for 2009
Alex called me a bit ago and was about an hour away from Lexington. He had the sound of relief in his voice that his destination was near after a long day of driving.
Update 4366: A great story of a slaughterbound horse that has been named the 2008 Horse of Honor: Rescue Horse Named 2008 Horse of Honor - Could Become USEF Horse of the Year
Update 4365: Today is a day for remembering Bob Witham. He was the trainer for Shadwell Stables in Camden South Carolina. As reported on Facebook, Bob sadly died earlier this week after suffering horrific injuries from a fall from a yearling a couple of days earlier. A true horseman.
I am now back off on my travels. I am planning to spend a couple of days in Kentucky, before leaving for Arkansas. Next stop should be Midway Kentucky! Wendy will be providing updates.
Posted by Alex at 12:08 PM
| Comments (242)
Barbaro Updates: 755
Posted December 15, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4364: It appears that there may be better news coming out of Ohio for it's horsemen and it's horses: Deal Averts 'Immediate Disaster' in Ohio, excerpt:
Racetrack management and horsemen in Ohio struck an agreement Dec. 16 that will reinstate more than 160 Thoroughbred racing dates at Beulah Park and River Downs in 2009, and save more than 1,000 horses at Beulah Park from being forced out of the track's stable area by Dec. 27.
It is also apparent that Fort Erie may not yet be over. Negotiations appear ongoing: SNOW WAY.
I experienced a little racing history this afternoon, visiting the grave site of three fantastic broodmares, Natalma, Fleur and Flaming Page. Mothers of Northern Dancer, The Minstrel and Nijinsky II.
Update 4363: Jeremy Plonk, a contributor at espn.com, provides his best racing performances of 2008. He rightly includes Peppers Pride: The best of 2008: The horses, of course.
Found on Paulick Report.
Update 4362: Superfecta here, with your regular weekly update.
Controversial Aussie jockey Chris Munce officially made his comeback, riding two winners, but the Hong Kong Jockey Club is still aiming to keep him grounded (even in Australia) until next September, as per their ban. Dan Liebman argues in The Blood-Horse that he should not have been allowed to ride (and I agree). However, if we're going to uphold bans from other jurisdictions, one wonders why Patrick 'King Cobra' Biancone was ever allowed to train in the US - or why trainers with multiple drug violations can train just about anywhere in the US.
One might wonder if the lack of drugs (now that some people notice them) contributed to Kip Deville's lackluster placing in the Hong Kong Mile - although Good Ba Ba's record-setting win was impressive in its own right. It's equally possible that current US milers are simply not in the same class as those in the rest of the world - and that's even in the absence of a powerhouse like Zarkava or Goldikova. In any case, well done to Good Ba Ba - it was another great ride by Christophe Soumillon.
Finally, Jess Jackson has penned a farewell to Curlin's fans; calling for a league and a commissioner of racing; while he doesn't specifically highlight the drugs issue, it is implied in his championing 'pure sport.' While I cannot say I agree with Jackson in every regard, it's good to see an owner at least attempting to keep something of an open dialogue.
Update 4361: It looks like Fort Erie races are closing down: Fort Erie reportedly to close in 2009.
This issue was heavily discussed towards the end of the Woodbine meet this year and it was feared to be inevitable by most horsemen. Let's hope they have made sufficient provisions for their horses and for themselves.
Yesterday, after visiting the New Holland auction, I went to The Whip. Since my last visit, which has been well over a year now, they have added a parking lot and an outside seating area. All looks very good. I then went to visit Mrs. Jackson. She was in great form, and we talked for a couple of hours on a variety of topics. It was very good to catch up after a long persiod of time for sure!
Update 4360: Today I visited the new holland horse auction. The prices for horses going to kill appeared to be pretty similar to those at olex. $85 - $285. More horses are sold at new holland, but many are ridden through the ring and find private buyers. Interestingly kill buyers appear to be interested in only certain types of horses. When ponies come into the ring they get coffee!
Update 4359: Flawless and perfect, that's Peppers Pride: Peppers Pride Perfect Streak Peaks at 19. excerpt:
"It going to be hard to decide (about retiring Peppers Pride) after such a terrific race," Marr said. "I want to thank everybody who has supported her from the $2 bettors, to the grooms and my family. She is the best horse I have ever touched."
In pushing her career earnings to $1,066,085, Peppers Pride has won seven times at Sunland Park, where she captured this race in 2007. The daughter of Desert God--Lady Pepper, by Chili Pepper Pie, is also seven-for-seven at six furlongs. All of her races, including 14 stakes wins, have come against state-bred females.
And we have an update on Nicanor, Barbaro's 2yo Brother: Nicanor's Four Furlong Work.
Posted by Alex at 12:21 PM
| Comments (173)
Barbaro Updates: 754
Posted December 10, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4358: From last weekend. Ron Charles, Santa Anita Park president and MEC chief operating office, demonstrates that MEC's no slaughter policy has teeth: Working Together To Save Horses.
Found on Paulick Report.
Update 4357: The focus of international racing this weekend was on Hong Kong, with the Hong Kong Vase highlighting the program. Here are the results:
MOON DENIED BY DURABLE DOCTOR
DE KOCK PEAKS WITH MOUNTAIN
HUGE SHOCK IN SPRINT
BA BA TOO GOOD
Update 4356: More coverage of last night's Sovereign Awards: Sweet Sovereign! Photos and Notes From Canada's Horse Racing Gala.
Update 4355: A further update on the Sovereign Awards. Peter Gross won the Sovereign Award for "Outstanding Feature Story" for: How Many Horses Can One Man Save? The story is rather flattering, but the award is very cool!
It is very seldom that I plug anything on this site, and I have determined to not have advertisements (I have not figured out how to delete the google ads!) but I would ask everyone to support The First Saturday in May (featuring Barbaro). You can do so by buying the DVD (it is excellent) and use the code "holiday08" for a discount.
Update 4354: Last night was Canada's Sovereign Awards in Toronto where Fatal Bullet was voted Canadian Horse of the Year: Sovereigns: Big Night for Bear Stables
Update 4353: Plans are delayed for a week. An extra week of downtime in Fair Hill!
Update 4352: I just swung by Fair Hill and caught up with a few more people including Penny, who also posted an update on timwoolleyracing.com yesterday:
What a rainy Thursday. The last time I spoke with Tim he was madly trying to get horses breezed because of the impending rain. The steady rain can only mean that he has been wet all morning. Days like today make it easier to sit in an office. Powdered Donut has taken a turn for the worse and is at New Bolton with Pneumonia. Keep your finger's crossed for her. Who's Happy has come out of her race just fine and I believe there is a race at the end of December for her.
There are several new babies in the barn that Tim and Robbie are working with. This time of year the turf horses go home and babies come in. Bubble Gum and Triumphant continue to do well and make their way towards the races. Luke is still at Fair Hill and will probably have a busy schedule with Who's Happy for the next couple of weeks. He seems to be enjoying his time there and doesn't seem to be missing the farm at all.
Anyway, after freezing our rears off ( I only wish that was actually possible) at the December Mixed Sale at Timonium, the weather has at least given us a break in temperatures. Sunday was such a cold and windy day that the horses were difficult and hands were freezing. I'm not sure how all of the Consignors, Owners, Buyers, and Help made it through the bitter cold. Sales results were just a little bit down from last year . We had expected it to be. Anyway, nothing else currently to report. Hope all of you are well.
Update 4351: Racing news continues to be quiet, as is typical of this time of year. The highlight of this weekend remains Peppers Pride's likely final start at Sunland Park, NM: Last Time Around for Peppers Pride?
This is to be my final day in the Fair Hill area. Off to Arkansas this weekend, with a stop over in Louiseville, KY. Plans for today include a visit with Mrs. Jackson. Yesterday's visits included dinner with ESPN's Jeannine Edwards, who covered the Barbaro story.
Update 4350: Snow in New Orleans: Weather forces Fair Grounds cancellation.
Update 4349: One of the best performances by any horse in recent times has to be that of Peppers Pride, keeping her winning streak in tact. Sunland Park opens this weekend and Peppers Pride may be there to attempt to win her nineteenth race: Peppers Pride adds star power .
Update 4348: Rainy day here at Fair Hill. However, in sunny Arizona, the Symposium on Racing and Gaming is continuing. Yesterday the symposium discussed the use of slot revenues at racetracks. An interesting discussion with the current economic climate: Is Racing Using Its Slots Money Wisely
Update 4347: A pleasant day thus far in the Fair Hill area, despite the drab but warm weather. My day included lunch with Mike Jensen, of the Philadelphia Inquirer. He reported significantly on Barbaro and it was good to catch up and share recent stories.
This may be interesting: Churchill Reviewing NTRA Membership.
Update 4346: Still relaxing and enjoying a couple of days in the Fair Hill area. Racing news is also very light, as is typical for this time of year. There will be a pretty interesting allowance race run at Fair Grounds tomorrow with a few horses with high aspirations: Derby Hopefuls Clash at Fair Grounds.
And I think I missed Nicanor's first work out in Florida: Nicanor Works in Florida.
Posted by Alex at 12:45 PM
| Comments (205)
Barbaro Updates: 753
Posted December 8, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4345: Here is a 2 minute video of me at OLEX, along with Ellie Ross and Joanne Pfeifer: Alex at OLEX.
The horse I rode was purchased by Ellie and is now on a new career path, as a potential eventer.
Update 4344: Superfecta here, with your regular Tuesday update.
The Paulick Report's recent suggestion to ban trainers with drug violations from Eclipse Award contention is a very interesting idea, but as many have pointed out, the fact that medication rules (currently) vary from state to state makes it difficult (in some cases) to determine whether something was an honest mistake with a therapeutic medicine versus something rather more sinister.
While other countries may solve the drug problem by simply not allowing them, there is still plenty of inconsistency to go around that can confuse owners, jockeys and trainers at the highest level. Australian racing authorities have found themselves in uncomfortable positions over international rules inconsistencies in the past few weeks: Racing New South Wales Ltd (Racing NSW), the Queensland Racing Board (QRL) and the Hong Kong Jockey Club have been at odds over jockey Chris Munce (more on that below), while Racing Victoria Ltd (RVL) finds itself very awkwardly placed after its ruling over the Melbourne Cup result.
First, the Munce Problem: Chris Munce was the winning jockey aboard Jezabeel in the 1998 Melbourne Cup, but was later caught and sent to jail in a Hong Kong bribery scandal - and one that was specifically racing-related, as he provided betting tips in exchange for cash. He was released from prison in October and the Hong Kong Jockey Club disqualified him for 30 months. QRL followed suit due to its 'commitment to reciprocate penalties imposed by other racing authorities' and denied Munce a license to ride there - but Racing NSW gave him one anyway. The Hong Kong Jockey Club was not best pleased, according to executive director of racing Bill Nader:
"It is not so much that relations with Racing NSW are in disrepair but they will certainly be under review," he told the Herald. "We look at Article 10 of the International Agreement between racing jurisdictions as being one of the 10 commandments and it is unprecedented for reciprocity not to be applied when a penalty is handed down."
QRL described its neighbor's license-granting decision as 'near anarchy
Of course, the same characterization could be made of international racing rules in general - which leads us to the Bauer Problem. You may recall British invader Bauer was second to longshot Viewed by a nostril in the Melbourne Cup - but the controversy that has since arisen has not been a big story Stateside. After the race, it emerged that Bauer had undergone extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) five days before the race; this type of ultrasound procedure to treat soreness is allowed in most jurisdictions until the day before a race - but it must be given at least seven days out in Australia.
On the surface, it seems like a clear violation of the rules, albeit an unwitting one - and in that instance the horse should have been disqualified, as Craig Young argues in the Sydney Morning Herald. But it's not so straightforward - the treatment had be recommended by a vet employed by RVL - one who surely should have known the rules of his own local racing authority. Given that it was quite clear a ruling against trainer Luca Cumani would have led to an entirely justified lawsuit against RVL, the result was allowed to stand.
Back in Britain, Greg Wood suggests that these issues point to the need for a single rule book for worldwide racing:
The mere fact that trainers from Ireland or Britain can now take horses to Melbourne or America and offer serious competition suggests that many of the practical issues involved in travelling horses over long distances have been overcome. Ten years ago, the first question to a European trainer on arrival at the Breeders' Cup meeting was: how did the horse travel? Now, it is almost taken as read that the trip went well.
The legal issues, though, will be another matter entirely. Football could never have achieved its global dominance and prosperity with a different offside rule on every continent. There seems to be little prospect that there will be even a framework for an international rule book for racing in the foreseeable future (in America, remember, every state has its own rules on everything from medication to the racing surface).
Europeans have enjoyed such regular success around the world in recent years, not least at the Breeders' Cup in California in October, that it is almost taken for granted. What the furore over Bauer demonstrates, though, is that the process of internationalising the sport has, in many important respects, barely begun.
He's entirely correct that the sport is a long way from where it needs to be and he is also clearly aware of the challenge that would be presented in trying to standardize the rules around the world - but if we could make a start at home by getting the pharmacy in order, it would be a good first step.
Update 4343: Yesterday's journey, from Woodbine to Fair Hill, was about eleven hours. Thankfully when I arrived I was greeted with a lovely dinner! I stopped off at Finger Lakes to see the Finger Lakes Thoroughbred Adoption Program. They have sixteen residents currently, and they are full. They also have a wait list of about forty horses. Thus far this year they have managed to place about 85 horses, which appears to be a good number. The Finger Lakes meet closed on Saturday, so now is an important time for them to try to place horses as more owners and trainers look to move their horses on.
This morning I went into Fair Hill and caught up with a few friends. The weather here is certainly more pleasant than the weather I left in Canada!
Update 4342: Currently, the University of Arizona's Symposium on Racing and Gaming is going on. Yesterday the symposium took a look at uniform regulations (or lack thereof) along with the penalties: Confab: Does Penalty Always Fit Crime?
Update 4341: Alex had left me a message about an hour ago saying he was just arriving in the Fair Hill area after driving all day and making a stop at Finger Lakes Thoroughbred Adoption Program.
Update 4340: The Barbaro Memorial Fund, a part of the NTRA Charities, dispursed close to $91,000 to support one new and two continuing studies on laminitis: Barbaro Fund Supports Research Projects
Update 4339: Wendy here - Many of you know that I live in northern Michigan and while Kid Rock sings about the fun summer days up here, winter can be something else. Unfortunately, the fierce winter weather hit our Canadian friends on their last day of thoroughbred racing: Cold Weather Ends Woodbine's Closing Day
Jen Morrison has a nice wrap up of Woodbine's shortened final day: Packing Up
Update 4338: Casino Drive finished sixth yesterday in the Japan Cup Dirt: Kane Hekili Captures Japan Cup Dirt.
I am heading south! First stop is the Fair Hill area. A HUGE thank you to everyone who has been very friendly during my stay in Canada. A huge thank you!
Wendy will post updates until I get somewhat situated tomorrow.
Posted by Alex at 11:50 AM
| Comments (83)
Barbaro Updates: 752
Posted December 6, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4337: Races cancelled. Meet's over. Off to the pub!
Update 4336: It is very cold here this afternoon for the final day of racing. We had a runner in the first, and more than one jockey was planning on not sticking around for the entire card after the race. Course I think I saw one of them ride in the second. Patrick Husbands has ridden the first two winners and is drawing ahead in the jockeys' race. Jimmy McAleney will need some good live mounts to try to close the gap. Anyway, we have a couple of runners later in the day, so I am returning!
Update 4335: Excellent story about one of our own: Wendy Uzelac: Putting welfare of race horses at the forefront.
Update 4334: It's cold here. I went in to help pack up a little, and walked a couple of horses. Say good bye to a few people. Now to start packing the flat. The goal is to be ready to leave when I wake up tomorrow morning! We shall see.
Update 4333: Funny Cide was officially welcomed to the Kentucky Horse Park on December 5: Funny Cide Heats Up Horse Park, excerpt:
"He represents hope for the little guy," Knowlton told several hundred people who braved the cold to welcome Funny Cide. "People tell us all the time that they've gotten into this game because of him. Also, racing needs more horses like him who fans can enjoy after their Triple Crown seasons. He was a huge fan favorite because he ran as long as he did--into his 7-year-old season--and because he was an underdog. We still get emails and letters from his fans everywhere."
Today is the last day of racing here at Woodbine for the 2008 meet. yesterday's racing, which was conducted in near blizzard conditions at some points, was highlighted by the 2yo stake where a filly nearly went wire-to-wire to finish a very close second: Display: Patena Holds On For Victory.
Update 4332: A great life comes to an end with the passing of inaugural Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner and prolific stallion Wild Again: Wild Again Euthanized at Age 28, excerpt:
"The combination of his athleticism, bloodlines, and personality made him a one-in-a-million kind of horse," said Three Chimneys stallion manager Sandy Hatfield. "He was my favorite. Until the very end he was happy, healthy and energetic, but above all else, he was a gentleman."
Update 4331: The final weekend of the meet. And of training here at Woodbine. It was cold again this morning. We had five sets to go to the track. I took three out before the break. Even though there was not an official break today (track closed early too and racing starts early today) I needed a coffee break! All galloped nicely for a nice easy morning's work. Tomorrow will be more about packing things up and getting things, and horses, ready to ship. We do, though, have a few runners to go over the weekend.
This is interesting: CONTROVERSIAL TRAINER HEADS ECLIPSE LIST. And I know there are people on this site that question my decision for wanting to work for Steve. All I can say is Steve has helped me tremendously, although only indirectly, with my work for this site. I am lucky to work for him. If he is not selected for the eclipse award this year then I would consider it a travesty, based on his accomplishments.
Update 4330: Calder-based Big Drama took this year's running of the Grade 3 Delta Jackpot last night. The graded stakes earnings from the race would about assure him of a spot in the Kentucky Derby next year: Big Win for Big Drama in Delta Jackpot.
Posted by Alex at 10:29 AM
| Comments (131)
Barbaro Updates: 751
Posted December 5, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4329: Another leading trainer with a potential drug positive: PLETCHER CHARGED WITH BREEDERS' CUP PROCAINE POSITIVE.
Update 4328: This morning it was cold at Woodbine. Thankfully a little sunny, but cold nonetheless. And the horses do get more "energetic" in the cold weather. At least two of my horses did their level best to dump me. Mr. Rowdy bucked so hard and high coming home that he nearly pulled me straight over his head when I landed after the buck. Usually my hands come flying off the neckstrap during one of these moves and I have just enough balance left to stay where I need to be. This time my hands were literally stuck to the neckstrap (cold weather) and because of that I nearly landed the wrong side of his head! One more day to survive Rowdy and I think that will be a small feat for the meet! All in all I rode six today, and I survived. We have one more day of galloping.
Update 4327: It is that time of year, again! Time to vote: NTRA's Moment of the Year.
Found on Paulick Report.
Posted by Alex at 9:59 AM
| Comments (58)
Barbaro Updates: 750
Posted December 4, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4326: An update on Barbaro's yearling brother Lentenor: Lentenor's New Life, excerpt:
"Lentenor is jogging in the field now," said Jill Stephens. "Now he seems to really like being ridden. In fact, he is more relaxed and comfortable riding out in the field than he was in a more enclosed area."
Update 4325: Jen continues to cover Woodbine as things heat up for the jockey's race. Jen also reports on a nice win last night for Dancer's Bajan, who is galloped by my "exploring Canada" partner Alison: FINAL FINAL.
Update 4324: It's like a ghost town here. It's bleak and quiet and just not much of anything is happening, at Woodbine in the mornings. I was actually quite busy, with seven sets for Steve. All went nicely, including three gate schoolers. All mine, bar one, are running in the next couple of days. I also got on a couple for my friend who I have been helping out a little the last few days. So nine altogther, in windy and chilly weather. Only a few more days to go!
Update 4323: 2002 Horse of the Year Azeri, who was also three times champion mare, will sell at Keeneland in January: Azeri to sell at Keeneland January.
The $750,000 Delta Jackpot, to be run on Friday night, looks to be a strong race this year: Grade 3 winners meet again in Delta Jackpot.
Posted by Alex at 9:52 AM
| Comments (41)
Barbaro Updates: 749
Posted December 3, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4322: Paulick Report has an excellent interview with Madelaine Pickens. The entire second half of the article is an indictment on the inaction of the thoroughbred industry to end horse slaughter: MADELEINE PICKENS: A PLAN FOR ALL HORSES, it ends:
But then she confessed to another reason, something that haunted her when she first learned about the horrors of slaughter: "Maybe it's because I'm ashamed that I was in the industry for years and never knew there was a slaughterhouse for so many horses at the end of the day. I'm so ashamed I never knew. And people who know about it and aren't doing anything, they should be ashamed, too."
Update 4321: A busier morning this morning for me at Woodbine. I had seven sets for Steve, two of which went to the gate after the break for a little schooling. All galloped nicely. My last one did prop a little at a grey pony that was hanging out in the middle of the track. And then as I was jogging back after the gallop another horse bolted away from the pony and nearly ran me over! Something about that pony! I also got on the one extra horse for another trainer I have been riding lately when I was finished. She also went nicely. Fewer and fewer people are here. Everyone is preparing for the last weekend of racing and packing up. Christmas wishes are being offered. Kira, an exercise rider for Reade Baker, mentioned this morning that she had signed up for our facebook group. Very cool. I will miss Woodbine when I leave.
Update 4320: We now have a Facebook group for Alex Brown Racing to complement this site, the discussion board and the wiki. This group will hopefully help us strengthen our connections to the community while also reaching out to new people interested in the welfare of the horse and horse racing. If you are on facebook, please check it out!
Posted by Alex at 10:08 AM
| Comments (68)
Barbaro Update: 748
Posted December 2, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4319: Today I went with April (who has been galloping for us for the last couple of weeks) to OLEX. Unfortunately we arrived after the sale was over due to a massive traffic jam on 401 West. As it turned out, that might not have been a bad thing as April was pretty traumatized by the experience of just seeing the horses (and cows) after the sale was over. Fortunately others were at the sale and bought a thoroughbred mare (Colebrook Queen) by outbidding two kill buyers. She went for 33 cents / pound (I think). I think she had been used in a riding program for a couple of years and had also been a broodmare. She is by El Prado. Meat prices topped out at about 30 cents / pound today, so the market was up over last week. Having three kill buyers at the auction will do that. Usual suspects, standard breds, belgians and so forth.
Update 4318: Superfecta here, with your regular weekly update.
I spent most of the holiday weekend traveling up and down the Eastern seaboard, and as a result only got the news about Saturday's somber day at Aqueduct after the fact. I'd seen the Cigar Mile results in brief and saw a few 'what a shame' comments, but initially thought the shame was the difficult DQ situation between Harlem Rocker and Tale of Ekati (the eventual official winner) - and the fact that Wanderin Boy had finished at the back. Unable to really investigate at the time, I assumed initially it was going to be something of a throwout like his Woodward effort in 2007, or his earlier New Orleans Handicap last-place finish - no doubt he had another injury, but he'd be back again in good form, as ever.
Obviously, I was wrong.
If you have not already read Steve Haskin's response to Wanderin Boy's death, be sure you do; despite seemingly endless physical problems, the horse returned to the highest level of the sport again and again, and I can only agree with Haskin - it should not have ended the way it did. Having said that, horses can contrive to mortally injure themselves in the most benign settings, whether it be a stall or a field; given his soundness issues, it's probably for the best he never went to stud, but it would have been lovely to see him have a long, healthy retirement. I recommend these parting glances from Green but Game, Brooklyn Backstretch and Gathering the Wind; it's evident that Wanderin Boy will be missed.
Springside's injury in the Demoiselle does lead one to wonder what was in the water at Aqueduct that day; while the early word is that she came out of surgery well and is expected to recover, it's certainly jarring to see horses break down in two races on the same card. One hopes that lessons might be learned - whatever they might be.
As is so often the case in racing, Saturday's dark events were followed by a thrilling performance on Sunday, when Cocoa Beach overpowered the retiring Precious Kitten in the stretch in the Matriarch at Hollywood Park. And let us not forget that Friday was a good day as well - fan favorite Einstein won the Clark Handicap. He seems to be getting better and even more multi-dimensional with age; if the ongoing legal silliness surrounding him and former stablemate Curlin at least serves to keep him in training, it can't be all bad.
Finally, and not a moment too soon, the Holiday Classic returns at Post Parade! Don't miss out on this annual tradition...
Update 4317: Light snow, and a quiet track. I guess that's december at Woodbine. We had an easy morning this morning, with only four sets. All mine galloped nicely. I then went and got on one extra one, the same filly as yesterday. She also went nicely for a quick and easy morning. Now off to OLEX.
Update 4316: Springside, who fractured her right front pasturn galloping out after winning the grade 2 Demoiselle at Aqueduct in New York, is recovering from surgery: Springside Recovering After Surgery, excerpt:
"The surgery went very well," Jim Sapara told The Blood-Horse after talking with Richardson the afternoon of Dec. 1. "She walked back to her stall after they put her in the pool to wake up, and she was feeding at the time of the call.
"(Richardson) said barring any unknown major factors, she should be fine. It was a little worse than he thought it was, but the surgery went very well."
Posted by Alex at 10:03 AM
| Comments (61)
Barbaro Updates: 747
Posted December 1, 2008
updates are now here.
Update 4315: Jen wraps up the weekend's racing at Woodbine and notes that voting for Soverign Awards concludes today: QUESTIONS - ANSWERS?.
A good article on Santa Anita's "No slaughter" policy (It is part of the Magna Group of racetracks) that includes quotes from thoroughbred adoption groups in the area: Track policy seeks to protect horses.
(Note, while horse slaughter is illegal in California, there is no doubt horses from California are sold through the auction and feedlot systems to states outside of California and then shipped to slaughter.)
Update 4314: A bit of a damp and dreary morning this morning at Woodbine. But that is better than the forecasted weather of plenty of snow! I think there was snow not too far north, but here it is well above freezing. I had six sets for Steve. A nice easy morning, although five of them galloped two miles, so I did put in the miles. I also got on an extra one for another trainer. A filly I had galloped a little bit a month or so ago. She also went nicely. The track is again quieter, people are moving out. There is one more week of racing and then the meet is over. South!
A nice double at Hollywood Park yesterday for Ramon Dominguez: Court Vision Rules in Hollywood Derby.
Update 4313: An excellent video that takes you inside OLEX, the kill auction in Kitchener Ontario. There are no gory details. Ellie Ross buys a thoroughbred from the kill pen: Horses for Slaughter.
I rode the horse that was purchased a week later (very quiet and calm) and she now has a loving home.
Posted by Alex at 9:50 AM
| Comments (48)