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Anak Nakal in Race-Win Shock

Perpetual underachiever Anak Nakal (pictured) finally stepped it up over the holiday weekend to take the Pennsylvania Derby and rewarded his backers at 16-1. I’ve always liked his pedigree but had more or less given up on seeing him return to the winner’s circle. I can’t say it was the strongest field ever assembled for the race, but in any event it was nice to see Joe Bravo get the win.

Curlin had to work harder than expected in the Woodward, but it sounds as though the Classic may be back on the agenda; let’s recall that a start at Saratoga was previously verboten as well, thanks to its reputation:

Curlin did not impress everyone on Saturday, but Saratoga is notorious as “the graveyard of champions” and Jackson laid it on with a trowel. “Aside from the Dubai race and the Breeders’ Cup, this is the most important race we’ve won, because of its historic nature, and its premier contribution to Curlin’s legacy,” he said. “Good horses like Man O’War and Secretariat had problems here. That’s an honour roll of some of the greatest. I’m glad Curlin showed he was up to it.”

Indeed, it sounds as though plans for Curlin still include another trip abroad post-Breeders-Cup (or possibly instead of), if all goes well:

Jackson left the door ajar to Santa Anita, acknowledging that “the perfect scenario” would be to go for both the Jockey Club Gold Cup and Breeders’ Cup – as he did last year – and then on to Japan in November. But he implied that this schedule would ask too much of the horse.

It would certainly be another feather in his cap if he could pull it off. And in case you were wondering, the foot wasn’t bothering Racehorse of the Year Weekend Hussler at all.

1 comment to Anak Nakal in Race-Win Shock

  • libby

    I have to ask myself what I want from Curlin when he wins a race and I am concerned-what is that all about? Anyway he dug in and made up amazing ground when asked. I was hoping more people would have gone to see him, if I could have I would have.

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