Tag Archives: curlin

SAUHBR Week 6: FINAL FURLONG!

Curlin, The Golden Warrior

Curlin, The Golden Warrior

Tomorrow will be the beginning of the end for SAUHBR Round 1.  BT’s Pick Power selections represent the best of the final Summer Stakes from around the country.  It being a holiday weekend, BT has chosen a Monday race to keep the party going just a little bit longer.  After this weekend, most of my faves will be starting in their last BC Preps.  The next edition of SAUHBR should be the Breeders’ Cup itself – 2 days of top-caliber racing on a surface many have not ventured a hoof upon!  Drama, drama, drama!  The opportunities for upsets abound, and then there are the Euros!  But that’s for another blog.  I will post my OFFICIAL SELECTIONS later!

This final slate of SAUHBR stakes are:

Saturday at Saratoga:

FOREGO S. Gr1 — A lot of the excitement got sucked out of this race when Benny The Bull retired, but now Lucky Island and Tasteyville are the headliners.  I like Forefathers and First Defense to show up in there, too.
WOODWARD S. Gr1 — Curlin’s dirt return, his first race at Saratoga…Divine Park is making a race of it, and AP Arrow is in there again…if he runs his race, the Champ is gonna do it easily.  They’re even giving Curlin the Key to the city!

Woodbine: ONTARIO COLLEEN S. — Have no idea who’s running, but the name Lickety Lemon is priceless!

Sunday’s grab bag of tracks:

Ruidoso Downs: LINCOLN HANDICAP — Pepper’s Pride shoots for the moon & her 17th straight victory.

Del Mar: DEL MAR DERBY — Gio Ponti makes a cross-country trip to continue his winning ways on turf.  Tizwest and Nownownow challenge.

SPECIAL HOLIDAY STAKES!!

Philly Park: PENNSYLVANIA DERBY — Perhaps the best of the weekend, with Smooth Air, Ready Set, Two Step Salsa, and Atoned and a bunch of others!  14 entries, that’s truly a “derby”!
 

Also on Manday, a long-lost favorite of mine returns to the track after almost a year off — Mr. Franks!  This colt filled out a nice exacta for me at Oaklawn back in, um…2005?

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Filed under Del Mar, Graded Stakes, Handicapping, Saratoga, SAUHBR

Grass 1, Curlin 0 – Red Rocks rattles Man O’War

Red Rocks Defeats Curlin in the Man OWar, photo from Thoroughbred Times

Red Rocks Defeats Curlin in the Man O'War, photo from Thoroughbred Times

I still can’t get over that crazy Man O’War on Saturday.  The pacesetters, Mission Approved and Sudan, took off at the break and put 8-10 lengths on the rest of the field.  Red Rocks settled in an easy third, about a length ahead of Curlin and True Cause.  As expected, the sprinters gave out in the stretch and Red Rocks took over with Curlin on his heels.  Then, just when I thought Curlin would surge by Red Rocks, he…um…didn’t.  He hung on like laundry on the line in the backyard.  Better Talk Now came on gamely for third.  SO much for the BC Turf winners being off form.  So much for Curlin going over to France.  I’d like to see Curlin at least once more on turf, maybe in the Arlington Million.  They say Curlin does better the second time he races over a track.  Maybe he’ll win next time.  There’s also the Sword Dancer at Saratoga if they want to try again.  The ownership has been pretty open to trying different things with Curlin, but they also say the BC Classic is out because it’s on plastictrack.  If I had such a good horse, I’d at least try the tires — he couldn’t perform worse than he did on turf.  If they want to try different stuff, they my even try that new BC Dirt Marathon at 1.5 miles.  He’d outclass any other horse in that field and give ESPN a reason to broadcast the race.

Other Races: HYSTERICALADY dominated the Delaware Handicap by 4.  She defeated Lemon Drop Mom and last year’s runaway winner, Unbridled Belle.  I have always liked Hystericalady and she hasn’t disappointed me this year.  Plus, she’s given me a lot of points in the Road to the Breeders’ Cup contest!

ARLINGTON HANDCP Gr3: 1)STREAM CAT $7.00 2)Cosmonaut $2.10 3)Corrupt EX pays $12.80 (Distorted Reality scr)

AMERICAN DERBY Gr2: 1)TIZDEJAVU $3.40 2)Sir Henry 3)Ablaze With Spirit (Blue Exit SCR, Boss LAffite 6)

DELAWARE OAKS Gr2: 1)PROUD SPELL $2.60 2)African Violet 3)She’s All Eltish (Maren’s Meadow 4)

AZALEA Gr3: 1)INDYANNE 2)Dubai Majesty 3)Dancing Allstar (Grand Obsession 4, Dites Moi 5)

CARRY BACK Gr2: 1)GOLDEN SPIKES 2)Gentleman James 3)Lantana Mob (Salute the Sarge 5, Carson’s Legacy 7)

PRINCESS ROONEY Gr1: 1)MISTICAL PLAN 2)Miraculous Miss 3)Dream Rush (Looky Yonder 5)

SWAPS Gr2: 1)TRES BORRACHOS 2)Two Step Salsa 3)Colonel John (Nownownow SCR)

POKER HNDCP Gr3: 1)KIP DEVILLE $2.80 2)Tam Lin $2.90 3)Operation Red Dawn (Sensational Humor 4)

NOt as good this week as last week, but not a total disaster.  Sarge needs to pick it up!

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Filed under Belmont Park, Graded Stakes, Handicapping, Hollywood Park

Man O War Stakes Gr1 Turf — CURLIN vs GRASS

Salute the Sarge, photo by Benoit Photo

Salute the Sarge, photo by Benoit Photo

Saturday’s running of the Man O’War at Belmont is the 35th anniversary of Secretariat’s victory in 1973, the Triple Crown winner’s turf debut.  Secretariat defeated Tentam and Big Spruce by a devastating margin, and many horsemen said afterwards that Big Red was better on turf than dirt.  This year, reigning Horse of the Year, CURLIN, will try his luck on the emerald track.  If he succeeds, owner Jess Jackson will send the chestnut colt out of the country, to France for the Arc.  Despite Curlin’s powerful victories on dirt, he’s no sure thing on the grass.  His field this time around is not the easy pickings he faced in the STephen Foster — 2 previous Breeders’ Cup Turf winners are in to make Curlin sweat.  Better Talk Now, winner in 2004, is the most experienced in the field and, at 9 years old, is looking to make history as the race’s oldest winner.  Red Rocks won the BC Turf in 2006 (the year I attended & I saw this horse up close! woot! /fangirlfreakout) but is lightly raced and has not won since May, in an allowance in Europe.  Also in are Mission Approved, the speed in the field; True Cause, a Godolphin hopeful; Sudan, Bobby Frankel’s trainee; and Grand Courtier, winner of last year’s Sword Dancer Stks under Calvin Borel. 

Curlin is still the horse to beat – if anybody is gonna do it I think Sudan can (it’s the Frankel), with Grand COurtier coming on for 3rd.  Better Talk Now & Red Rocks, while talented in previous years, have lost a few steps and it would be a surprise to me if either one ran away with the field.  Still and all, a great race that I will actually get to watch LIVE! on TV.

OTHER RACES:

POKER HANDICAP: KIP DEVILLE returns, but I like TAM LIN better.  Sensational Humor to show.

PRINCESS ROONEY Gr1: 1)DREAM RUSH 2)LOOKY YONDER 3)MIRACULOUS MISS

CARRY BACK STakes Gr2: 1) SALUTE THE SARGE 2)GENTLEMAN JAMES 3)CARSON’S LEGACY

AZALEA Stakes Gr3: 1) DANCING ALLSTAR 2)GRAND OBSESSION 3)DITES MOI

SWAPS Gr2: 1)COL. JOHN 2)TWO STEP SALSA 3)NOWNOWNOW

AMERICAN DERBY Gr2: 1)BLUE EXIT 2)TIZDEJAVU 3)BOSS LAFITTE

ARLINGTON HNDCP Gr3: 1)COSMONAUT 2)STREAM CAT 3)DISTORTED REALITY

DELAWARE OAKS Gr2: 1)PROUD SPELL 2)SHE’S ALL ELTISH 3)MAREN’S MEADOW

DELAWARE HNDCP Gr2: 1)HYSTERICALADY 2)UNBRIDLED BELLE 3)BUY THE BARREL

And that’s it for me…it’s too late and I’m too tired to do all the stakes this weekend.  WATCH CURLIN ON ESPNEWS SATURDAY!!!

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Filed under arlington park, Belmont Park, calder race course, Graded Stakes, Handicapping, Hollywood Park