Barbaro Updates: 806
updates are now here.
Update 4628: A gorgeous afternoon at Oaklawn Park. Gorgeous! I went over to watch a race or two, then the stakes race. It turned into about four races. Oaklawn does not seem to be too bothered to stick to post times. No matter on a gorgeous day though! The Azeri, the stake, was won by Acoma, under Julien Leparoux. Not a bad weekend for the jock who just won the Santa Anita Handicap with Einstein! Found on Paulick Report.
Update 4627: Just spoke to Hooh Why's owner. He appreciated the text message I sent him yesterday after her race and called me back. She is gazing out at the San Gabriel mountain's from her stall at Santa Anita. She looks great after her strong effort against Stardom Bound. One thing about Hooh Why, she tries!
Update 4626: Old Fashioned worked as scheduled this morning, 5/8ths, after the break here at Oaklawn Park. His time was impressive, getting the distance in 59 seconds, galloping out in one minute and twelve. This is a pretty hard race track, and I think a Derby favorite should be able to work in that kind of time. He covers a lot of ground for sure. However, I remain unimpressed with the way he goes. Two other horsemen were with me when we watched him in the final eighth of the work. They concurred. And I could only observe the final eighth as I was aboard another horse about to start his gallop. I am assuming reports of the work will be positive, based on the time alone!
Overall I had five to ride this morning. Four before the break and the one I took after the break. All mine went nicely, but there was chaos on the track before the break. A loose horse from a pony galloped around the track twice the wrong way before he was caught. Another rider got hurt coming off his horse. Perhaps the lack of sleep (one less hour) contributed to the chaos. We had one rider missing, not sure if that can solely be blamed on a one hour time change though!
Update 4625: Einstein took the Santa Anita Handicap yesterday becoming the biggest win for trainer Helen Pitts, who was also the trainer of Curlin before he was turned over to Steve Asmussen: Big 'Cap Win a No-Brainer for Einstein.
And Paulick Report captured all the racing action: LIVE BLOG: FROM GOTHAM TO THE BIG 'CAP.
Update 4624: Wow. Some great horse racing today. Stardom Bound won her Oaks, but was "claws and daggers" to do so. And the culprit ? Hooh Why, the filly I galloped at Woodbine. Hooh Why ran yet another terrific race in defeat and was beaten two head bobs at the wire. All that being said, I think Stardom Bound will exit my top ten Derby list. Apparently it's not good for horses to me on my list at this point!
I spoke to Brendan, Eddie Kenneally's assistant, after their Custom for Carlos beat Nicanor. We joked a little about it, but one thing is for sure, they really like their horse. No shame to finish a close second to him. And Nicanor was many lengths in front of the third horse. I also spoke to Peter Brette. Very happy. Nicanor came out of the race well, scoped clean and so forth. He is hoping Nicanor learns to relax a little more early, but clearly thinks he will enjoy two turn races. And it does look that way. I also spoke briefly to Mrs. Jackson, who was similarly pleased with today's race. All very good!
Update 4623: Nicanor's second start this afternoon was very impressive. Obviously much more so than his first start. Nicanor, broke sharply and soon took the lead from the nine hole. He kept the lead until turning for home when he was headed by the short-priced favorite. Rather than fold, Nicanor ran on gamely and was closing in on the winner at the wire. Very impressive second start. Nicanor's second race on YouTube
After the Gotham I am throwing Haynesfield out of my top ten Derby list.
Update 4622: Quick updates for this afternoon's racing action. Colonel John is scratched from the Santa Anita Handicap: Colonel John Scratched From Big 'Cap.
Edgar Prado has taken off his mounts at Santa Anita. And Hooh Why, a filly I galloped up at Woodbine and a filly who nearly beat Patena in her last start at Woodbine, is taking on Stardom Bound this afternoon in the Oaks!
Update 4621: And this morning at Woodbine, a photo essay. (Still looks a little chilly to me!)
Update 4620: Lovely weather at Oaklawn Park this morning. We had seven sets at Steve's, five before the break and two after the break. I took three to the gate for a little schooling. All schooled well. All galloped well although my last one was a little tricky to get started! Old Fashioned's routine changed this morning. He did not come on the track first set after the break as he has the last couple of days. He may have been training the second set after the break but I was too preoccupied with my own horse to really see if it was him!
This afternoon will likely bring about some changes to my top ten Derby list. Haynesfield will have to win the Gotham to maintain his listing. Of course I will be rooting for him as he is one of Steve's. And Stardom Bound will need to be impressive winning the Oaks at Santa Anita to entertain ideas of moving up to the Derby trail. I think though that that is quite likely.
Two others on my current list, Old Fashioned (who I plan to drop next week anyway) and Rachel Alexandra, are scheduled to work here tomorrow at Oaklawn Park ahead of their respective engagements next weekend.
And the show Jockeys continues to entertain on a Friday evening. I am now wondering if Chantal Sutherland will be back at Woodbine ? And the show has been picked up for another series, taping begins today at Santa Anita!
Good news here at Oaklawn Park, despite the poor economy, attendance and handle are up, so purses are now up slightly: Oaklawn Park increases purses.