Friday, September 18, 2009

Fizzy Starts At Remington

Tonight Fizzy Pop takes on 9 at Remington Park in his seasonal debut in Oklahoma. Dean Butler, his usual pilot, will be on board as he goes a mile over the turf course against $10,000 claimers.

WHAT!? You say, Fizzy in for only $10,000? Yes, he is. And here is why: His last start, though a tough $16,000 claiming race at Canterbury was still a $16,000 claiming race. He ran a nice race and Juan Rivera rode him well, but he still finished 3rd. He's not going against lesser company in Oklahoma. Quite the contrary, with slot money inflating the purses a bit, higher quality horses have arrived at Remington to take a shot. The $15,000 level there may come up just as tough as the $25,000 level at Canterbury and Tampa where he fails to win. He has a legitimate shot at winning at this level. That's all I ask - a legitimate shot. We feel that it's more of a crapshoot at $15,000 and more calculated risk at $10,000. If we lose him, we lose him. I'd be very sad to see my peppermint buddy depart the barn, but running him to "protect" him from a claim does a disservice to my partners on the business end of this endeavor. If that's how you run a barn, then you're better off buying a pasture ornament and not a racehorse.

Here is the lineup facing Fizzy in tonight's 5th race:

Kippersol (Quinonez, B) - In his first turf start in over a year, he showed nice early speed before being blitzed and finishing 10th. He may have needed the last one, but his turf form (1 for 7 lifetime) leaves something to be desired.

Little Wagon (Landeros) - A familiar face for Fizzy, these two hooked up last out at Canterbury. Fizzy finished 3rd 2 1/4 lengths out while Little Wagon lost steam in the stretch and was the beaten favorite. Shorter distance will help but may not have recovered from presumably a 2007 injury.

Sku (Kimes) - Hard knocking 7 year old has been in the money in 15 of 27 turf starts, but the last of those was back in January. Jumps way up from $4,000 claimers where he couldn't notch a win.

Scaramouche (Berry) - Local debut wasn't bad finishing only 2 3/4 lengths behind the winner and others in here today. If he can improve off that, could be a threat.

Sushi Joe (Murphy) - Narrowly missed by a neck in local debut last out in that same $10,000 race as others. Versatile runner has solid Beyers and without hitting the gate two back could have hit the board in all 4 starts since returning from the layoff. The one to beat.

Condobound (Hamilton) - Turf debut after stepping up in local bow to win a $7500 conditioned claimer. Tough to beat some of these experienced multiple winners.

FIZZY POP (Butler)

Leeway (Martin) - 3rd in that same $10,000 race as many of these and was beaten favorite last out. In fact, has been the favorite in his last 6 starts. Probably not this time, but is a contender for sure.

Lucado (Quinonez, L) - Also a member of that last race, this one finished fourth. While close, has been unable to find the winner's circle in 6 starts since a freshener.

Guinness Charlie (Young) - Only local turf race was a disaster last year but has hit the board in 5 of 6 starts this year albeit against lesser.

Our boy has his work cut out for him in this one. On paper, he should be the favorite, though not a clear cut gimme by any stretch of the imagination. His Beyers are solid and a notch above the rest and Dean is back on board which always give him the best chance to win. He has been at Remington for a few weeks now so has had the opportunity to get acclimated and worked well within himself last week. I like our chances, but take nothing for granted

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