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Preakness 2011: On the Record

Preakness day is fast approaching, with the usual focus on the Derby winner and his connections, although we have so far been spared the Second Coming of Secretariat talk that occasionally pops up after a particularly emphatic Derby win – no doubt the strength (or lack thereof) of this year’s field contributes to that, though […]

Kentucky Derby 2010 – On The Record

Just add water (and possibly hail)

While I was certainly not alone in failing to pick the Derby winner on purpose last year, we did win the pool at the Derby party we attended, but it was entirely accidental – when we got down to the last few options, Mine That Bird stuck […]

What Failure Really Looks Like

This means you, NTRA

Let’s begin with a basic premise: getting a check for second is not a failure, but a non-working website is. With that in mind, let’s examine the events of the past weekend. For some reason, American racing at the highest level is hung up on success or ‘failure’ in […]

That Would Be Nice

Rachel Alexandra, at work last weekend – will she go to Arkansas?

The rumored purse-bump for the Apple Blossom was announced today, and by all accounts, it seems to have come about the right way. Should Rachel Alexandra and Zenyatta both appear at Oaklawn Park in the April 3rd race, there will be $5 […]

Team Einstein Revisited

As we discussed earlier in the week, it’s almost Einstein time. Saturday’s Stephen Foster presents the perfect excuse for my favorite Brazilian-bred to finally get a little corner of the media spotlight, and some publications have duly obliged. There are two great articles about trainer Helen Pitts-Blasi and her ‘best friend in the barn’ and […]

(Don’t) Sweep the Leg

So, it’s official – Rachel Alexandra is in, and has the outside post. I’m viewing this as a positive, given what has happened in the modern era in terms of fillies in the Preakness – for some reason, seems to have been open season on them, far more than it has been on, say, Derby […]

2009 Kentucky Derby: On the Record

It’s official – I’ve (almost) made some decisions. Without further ado, here is your official Superfecta Kentucky Derby handicapping exercise for 2009 – as ever, with the note that my recent successes with Smarty Jones and Barbaro are tempered by the fact that my last correctly-predicted winner was Winning Colors in 1988. You have been […]

Nothing Definitive

Last weekend’s racing may have produced more questions that answers; Albertus Maximus (pictured) was a worthy winner of the Donn (although Einstein overcame a terrible post position and a rough trip to hang on for third on his less-than-favorite surface, so at least he picked up a check) and is off to Dubai for the […]

Big Weekend at Gulfstream

This weekend’s highlight for me is Einstein’s 2009 debut in the Donn Handicap; trainer Helen Pitts-Blasi warns that Gulfstream’s track is not his favorite dirt surface, but I think it’s great they are giving him a challenge, rather than going for the three-peat in the Gulfstream Park Turf. (Obviously adding that G1 victory to his […]

A Long-Expected Party?

The nation’s best-documented unraced 3-year-old is getting ready for his debut, complete with a CBS TV crew (which is considerably more coverage than the entire Sunshine Millions event received) – Nicanor, full brother to Barbaro, is likely to race shortly. He’s been training in Florida for the winter and the likely spot is a Gulfstream […]