JC / Railbird

Belmont Archive

At Least

man and horse look like no harm came to either:

Photos by Easy Goer, on Raceday 360 Wire via Flickr.
* This latest little blogging hiatus continues for a short time longer while I wrap up a couple projects. Back to regular posting soon.

Getaway Day

Heading up to Saratoga this morning, but I didn’t want to leave without mentioning marvelous Music Note, who kept her win streak rolling with another seemingly effortless victory in the Coaching Club American Oaks on Saturday:

Last of five at the half, she moved into contention on the outside going into the stretch, then drew away to an 11-length win, running her final quarter in a very respectable :24.17 for a final time of 2:01.66. “She looked like she was stronger than her last race,” said trainer Saeed bin Suroor, who was in the paddock to saddle her and could be seen beaming in the winner’s circle after (NY Daily News). Along with CCAO runner-up Little Belle, Music Note will be pointed to the Alabama on August 16, a race that could also draw Proud Spell and is shaping up as far more interesting than any of the events on the Spa calendar for 3-year-old males. As I commented to Brooklyn Backstretch yesterday (during an action-packed day at Belmont), all the distaff divisions are overflowing with talent this year, but the 3-year-old fillies are an especially bright bunch.

Raw Fandom

From Ernie’s daily Thoroughbred Racing In New York email:

I watched Horse of the Year Curlin circle the paddock just as the first was going off. Schooling session. I screamed to Asmussen, “Thanks for running him here, Steve. Thanks for running him anywhere!”
“If he were mine,” he said, smiling, “I’d run him every day.”

Awww. I’m reminded … racing is all about the horses.
Related: NYRA is offering free admission and parking on Saturday. For those who can’t make it to the track, ESPNews will air the Man o’ War live at 5:15 p.m. ET. Thanks!

Royalty-Free Year

No Triple Crown this spring, and no Triple Tiara this summer. When Music Note, a talented filly on the rise, won the Mother Goose last month, I wondered if she might be chasing the historic bauble with starts in the Coaching Club American Oaks and Alabama under consideration. Teresa of Brooklyn Backstretch reports the achievement isn’t possible, though, since the series, which was changed to Mother Goose- Coaching Club- Alabama in 2003, was restored to its original configuration of Acorn- Mother Goose- Coaching Club in 2006 for an unknown reason:

Why was the series changed in 2003, and changed back in 2006? No one [NYRA markeing manager Dan Silver spoke with] could tell him, other than that the old management of NYRA changed it for some reason, and the new management in 2006 changed it back.

Curious. The bonus for the Tiara, which has been won by such distaff stars as Sky Beauty, Ruffian, and Shuvee, was dropped in 2004, and as Teresa notes, there’s been woefully little marketing around the series in recent years.
Zaftig, the filly who was eligible to take the Tiara this year, is unfortunately sidelined for the summer with a stress fracture. Owner John Moore said last week the Acorn winner could return in time for the Gazelle Stakes in September.

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