17 May 2008

Preakness 2008

Big Brown should beat this field without a problem. The unknown horses have been away.
I knew when I picked Gayego as my second choice, that Big Brown is in a zone of his own this time out. Here is the link to a free Equibase form for the race. My longshot selections for the tri and the super are Hey Byrn and Riley Tucker.
If Big Brown does what is expected and wins the Preakness, I still contend that it could easily be his last race. Because he would be undefeated, the risk versus reward of racing in the Belmont may not be good BUSINESS. And lets face it, when it comes to good horses who regularly retire at 3, it is all about BUSINESS.
If you don't think it is all BUSINESS, read this by Andrew Beyer regarding Big Brown's ownership.

Bill Finley thinks Big Brown will win in the Preakness, but he will regress, and regress so much, that he won't win the Belmont. And Finley isn't even entertaining the possibility that Big Brown won't compete in the Belmont.

Angry owners in Puerto Rico sometimes give the word to destroy slow horses immediately after a bad race.

Have you looked at Fort Erie's cards? Pathetic. 6 horse races full of "pigs and chickens." They split a maiden 5 claimer on Monday (two 6 horse races instead of a 12 horse betting race), to fill 8 races.
I blame the horsemen here. They were pissed about losing 4 dates, when they should have opted for losing 20 dates. 64 days would have meant a 25-30% increase in purses, and it would have attracted a much bigger horse population, which means bigger fields and bigger betting. They still could have run the meet over the same length of time.
Why they race on Sundays is beyond me. Right now, they should race on Mondays and Tuesdays only, fill 10 or 11 races each day, especially take advantage of the 4:30-5:30 crowd who really pound into whatever track is available on Monday or Tuesday at that time.
Watching a few horses at Woodbine who just can't handle Poly makes me realize that Fort Erie's dirt track is a needed option. But economically, the purse structure is not economical for most owners to look long term with a horse.
This is looking like Fort Erie's last year, barring a raise in percentages from OLG slots to the horsemen, or brand new ownership who give a crap about horse racing.

Harlan Abbey's report on Fort Erie

Buffalo Casino Revenues Continue To Gain Steam

HPITV to begin "Reloaded" program; replays of 5 selected complete cards will be broadcast at various times starting at 2:15 AM

ORC suspends drive Al Cullen for a year following random breathalyser test.

ORC rules that former Elliott trained OSS horse can race, despite WEG's ruling that all Elliott trained horses were to be banned

Pretty quick horse racing survey at SI

NTRA reaches a deal with The Southern Racing Cooperative

Forbes article on durability versus speed

Steve Davidowitz makes suggestions for improving horse racing safety

One of his ideas is to Xray all runners approved for racing. And Xray them during entry. That is probably the right thing to do, but I have a feeling, we'll end up with one third the runners we have now.

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