Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Ah, It's Spring in Minnesota

This is our boy, Fizzy Pop, at home in the Bernell Rhone barn C-5 on the Canterbury backstretch. I was finally able to get down to the track to see our first 100% owned horse in person. Bernell said he was big, but I was surprised just how big he is. Fortunately he has a nice turn of foot and he seems to be as sound and strong as he is large. Cindy Rhone, Bernell's lovely wife and assistant was taking care of the barn when I stopped by late this morning and we had a great conversation about Fizzy.

It appears his disposition is quite gentle. A little disconcerting to hear at first when your discussing your racehorse. Cindy must have sensed that because she followed that up with how tenacious he is when he works and races. He just grabs a hold of the bit and away he goes. Whew...crisis averted. In actuality, it turns out to be a very nice combination. I can't imagine a horse of Fizzy's size being ornery. That would make life miserable for his groom and all involved with him. He also appears to be what we used to call in high school "coachable". He allows his rider to take charge and doesn't mind being handled in the least.

It looks like Fizzy is going to go for us in a $10,000 starter allowance on Mother's Day, May 11th. We'll see if he gets in or not and how training goes this next week. Bernell taught me a rule of thumb for starter allowances is to have a horse worth double the value of the condition. In this instance a horse should be worth $20,000 to have a shot at winning a $10,000 starter allowance. Yes, we bought Fiz at $10,000, but he was more than competitive at $16,000 and may be worth a bit more up here. The plan is to see what we've got and give him a go over the main track while he's sharp and we wait for the turf course to open. It's another ambitious spot, but Fizzy Pop has risen to every challenge we have thrown at him so far and with a little racing luck in his last outing he could be 1-0-1 for us instead of 0-0-2.

In additional signs of Spring, Somerset Sam and Somerset Wish, two horses GRS owns 10% and are managed by Star of the North Racing are scheduled to go this opening weekend at Canterbury - both in Minnesota-bred Maiden Special Weights on Saturday and Sunday. I also opted to volunteer for the Minnesota Thoroughbred Association in the Upper Midwest Two-Year Olds in Training sale scheduled for next Saturday.

Canterbury Park opening, the Kentucky Derby, two full weekends at the track with three runners and my first sale. Does life get any better? Thank God it's Springtime!

1 comment:

Annerleigh Harrison said...

Fizzy looks very handsome ! And I agree - the big ones can be the kindest. I have two 17-handers ( though mine are ex-racers, and retired now to a less exciting life on the farm with me) and they are both real gentle giants.
All the very best to you and Fizzy for the coming season !