July isn't getting much better as you may have surmised by my absence from this space. No need to tell the world what's going on (though I may write about it later), but like my mother says, "Kids are your greatest joy and can cause the greatest heartache." Thankfully everyone is healthy and this too shall pass, but the havoc caused is very real and has kept me away from the blog for quite a while. Quite frankly it will continue to keep me away for a while longer. I have some quiet time here before dawn Pacific Time before this day awakes to try and kick my ass so some thoughts on Diplo, who was claimed this past weekend at the end of the Hollywood Park meet.
Diplo was purchased privately by some friends in California earlier in the year. I jumped in for a small share in order to keep my hand in California racing and to take the opportunity to race with friends. In his 10 starts for us, he had a record of 1-3-3 and earned right around $39,000 - enough for us to eek out a small profit when augmented with the claim. Of the three starts he finished off the board, he still managed 4th in two and only a fifth in one. He is the very definition of an "honest racehorse".
In one respect I was fortunate to have not made it out to meet Diplo in person because I didn't have the opportunity to get attached to him. By all accounts he was great around the barn, so that would have made the claim a bit tougher to take. He was claimed for $25,000 which was a bit more than what was paid for him. He finished a solid third in the race, beaten only 3/4 of a length. I think he can win at $25,000 and maybe even at $32,000, but he has yet to prove that. If I had to have put a price tag on him before this race it would have been right in this ballpark so he was neither a bargain nor overpriced. You've got to place your horses where they can win and that's what Doug O'Neil did with Diplo. This time he was claimed. It happens. But if you are spotting your horses fairly, you can take losing one in stride knowing you were doing the right thing by the owners and the horse.
Thanks to Tom and Jeff in California for letting me in on Diplo (I hope Russ enjoyed the run from his vantage point!). Thanks to the Doug O'Neil barn for managing the horse so well. And thanks most of all to Diplo for a fun, honest run these past few months.