Sunday, May 3, 2009

Derby Streak Remains Intact; Fizzy Pop Runs a Solid Second

Apparently I'm nothing if not consistent. That and my Derby jinx is even more powerful than imagined.

Plenty of analysis of the race can be found with my fellow TBA Bloggers. Just go to the home page via that hyperlink and clink on any article that strikes your fancy. I'm not going to break down Mine That Bird's win here. Suffice to say: HUGE upset; never would have bet him in a million years; best Beyer (until yesterday) is the same as Fizzy Pop's; don't know if we'll hear from this one ever again.

My jinx has reached a new low this year. I Want Revenge (probably what the connections think about me - if they had a clue who I was or what I did to them) comes up with heat in the ankle the morning of the race and scratches. The jinx then devolves on poor Friesan Fire who not only loses, but finishes second to last! Maybe next year I find myself a 50-1 shot and let a favorite win?

Some of my final thoughts from Derby Day 2009:

I commend the connections of I Want Revenge for deciding to scratch the horse. Heat is never a good sign in the legs and joints of a racehorse and they absolutely did the right thing disregarding any pressure they may have felt by scratching the morning line favorite the morning of the Derby.

It's my opinion that other than going back to Sunland and winning some local stakes races, Mine That Bird will not take the racing world by storm. Please give me your thoughts with the poll above left.

Gerry Bailey had a good point on the ESPN radio telecast I was listening to after the race. There were wonders aloud how the rail could have opened up for Borel and Mine That Bird. Gerry mentioned: the slower horses that knew they were out of it were not focused on cutting off the rail for Borel. The four of five horses in front were so focused on winning the race and the "contenders" they were racing with, they never gave a thought to him. Bob Baffert was less forgiving in an interview after the race when he stated that, and I'm paraphrasing, They knew the rail was gold and they just left it open for him.


In other Derby Day news - I just like saying that, of course we raced in Florida...still Derby Day, though - Fizzy Pop finished strongly for second place in a $16,000 Claiming race at Tampa Bay Downs. Grato Recuerdo, a Chilean bred, ran just off the pace and tried pulled clear in the stretch. Fizzy broke well, worked his way up the pack, found some clear sailing on the outside but came up just a neck short. A very nice ride by Dean Butler had Fizzy well positioned to make his run, but he ended up just short.

We're won our share of close ones, so I guess it was only a matte of time before we lost one. Still, it was a strong effort to build on and Fizzy finishes his comeback meet at Tampa with two seconds in three starts. He'll move to Canterbury on Monday and get ready to make his debut in front of his partners (most of them anyway) later in the month of May.

1 comment:

Sandra Warren said...

If Baffert knew the rail was gold (which was certainly showing itself to be true in the earlier races), then he might have issued his own instructions to his jock to be on the rail. But few are brave enough to risk being stuck in traffic in a 20 horse race. It was only sporting of jocks who knew their horses were running backwards not to shut off the hole just to avoid one more placing downward. It's easy to do that when the jockey with all the momentum is well-liked. I doubt anyone would have ever done that for Bill Hartack.

Speaking of sporting, I had wondered why the jockey for Papa Clem did not claim foul against Pioneerof The Nile for bumping him in the late stretch. It was the difference between second and fourth, and certainly worth a claim of foul in a normal race. I heard yesterday from someone who is a friend of the Papa Clem connections that they felt that the Derby was too significant a race to make a claim of foul for this bumping incident. Now THAT is sporting!