4 May 2009

I'm Just Putting It Out There

I took a little a lot of heat on the Pace Advantage Forum for making the following post:

If Mine That Bird gets a positive, it will be the best thing that could happen to horse racing.

So far the thread is into the 5th page and has had over 2400 views (I'm pretty sure that it counts repeat visitors as a new view).

I went on to explain why, but there are many commenters who still don't get my point:

Drugs are plaguing the sport and regulators have been very slow to fix it.
Hey, I know that a positive would hurt the game short term, but until drugs are out of the game, the game will be broken.

And again, I'm not inferring here that the horse will get a positive. The horse could have been on the best part of the track, the hardest part of the track, and saved the most ground, and the pace of the race helped him too.

Funny things happen in the slop. Again, I've already read many comments from people expecting a positive. I'm not expecting a positive, but wouldn't be shocked just the same.

There is a lot of speculation that at the very least Mine That Bird had something that is not tested for inside his bloodstream that made him move like a monster on Saturday. But it is 2009, and that is the state of horse racing.

Honestly, if I made a quick pick bet and Mine That Bird was on the ticket, I would have canceled the ticket, even if it was a superfecta, and Mine That Bird was in the four hole. His speed numbers weren't high enough going in to win a Non Winners other than Maiden or Claiming race.

He was the only gelding. Was it training in the New Mexico atmosphere that gave him an edge? Did the new Kentucky steroid rule turn the race into a complete crap shoot?

No denying that Calvin Bo-Rail was the best jockey for that particular course on that particular day by a country mile.

Jennifer Morrison reports on her blog that Chantal Sutherland (who rode the horse to victories last year) was considered until Bo-Rail became available. According to Down The Stretch Newspaper, the offer from Playboy that Sutherland refused would have gone up considerably if she just had a Derby mount, let alone won the Derby (which I think would have happened if she had the mount, as Sutherland seems to have a good eye for the track bias). So we can blame the trainer (or whoever made the decision on the jockey) for preventing Sutherland from being in Playboy, for now.

Hopeful Playboy won't make an offer to Calvin Keebler Borel. I know I won't be buying that issue.

Another thing that bugs me is anyone who claims that Mine That Bird is a Canadian. He isn't. Never was. Never will be. With all the money that is allotted to Ontario breds, it was a crying shame that he won the Sovereign Award, but he was better than all the Canadian breds and since he ran here at least three times, he qualified to win. He is a Kentucky bred. A US bred horse, nothing more, nothing less.

I will fairly add though that on his dam's side, especially his third dam, there is a lot of Canadian blood. Looks like a few Display Farm horses are at least related to the Bird.

PETA must be very upset that no horses died in the Derby this year. I'm surprised they don't go after the winner's name. I'm sure they aren't fans of throwing birds into mines to see if there is enough oxygen for humans.

This win by Mine That Bird is going to hurt the sales prices of high end horses for the foreseeable future. The low end horses may get a boost, as buyers see that they don't have to spend much to have a future millionaire. This win, coupled with Big Brown's win last year shows that it is much more prudent to spend a premium after a horse has established himself, at least somewhat. The Green Monkey days are gone.

Finally, it is my contention that after that 7 length Derby win, barring a positive, the Bird should be the favourite or 2nd choice at the very least in the Preakness. Many on Pace Advantage adamantly disagree with me on that. But I just can't see how he won't.

Peter from Family Guy agrees with me on the Preakness. Here is his tip:

It was nice to see Fort Erie on the Score on Sunday, instead of Belmont. I'm hoping nobody complains. Showing Fort Erie as the second track is the right thing to do in order to help promote horse racing in Ontario.

But it didn't help the betting unfortunately. Less than $400,000 was bet in total at Fort Erie on Sunday (I think the $35 million sales price is a tad too high now. Oh wait, I always thought that). I don't ever remember seeing such a low total in recent history.

I know what didn't help. Fort Erie stopped taking US dollar bets at the track. Patrons from the US have to convert to our funny money before they make a wager on track now. Is it any wonder that Fort Erie is big trouble. And by looking at those betting numbers, I hate to say it, but the end is near.

I know their high takeouts (they are the second worst in North America) are a huge turn off to many bettors, but they need to stop racing on Sunday, and only race when they are not up against any significant competition. Switch to Wednesdays. Let players tap out at the Fort before Woodbine races.


Anonymous said...

It behooves you to know that a horse needs to run at least three times in Canada to have the requisite number of starts to be eligible for a Sovereign. Just thought you should know because facts are, after all, paramount for any perspicacious blogger and/our journalist.

Cangamble said...

Ok, I corrected it. I thought they knocked it down to two for some reason.

Anonymous said...

I agree it was nice to see Fort Erie on the Score, hope it continues. Absolutely necessary for the media to support "Ontario" racing. Heartwarming to see Toronto supporting Fort Erie.

Question: What is the Fort Erie Racetrack website doing to promote/attract/inform the public of racing? Could it be less engaged? Same old same old.

railbirdbrad said...

with the scratch of I want revenge,the derby favorite,it proves to be a huge knock to winter book advance betting,yes call me a sucker as i took 17-1 on i want revenge and when he scratched i lost my money,so antepost betting is a suckers play,this is the second timei got stung.....the first and the last !

Anonymous said...

I dont think you can blame the CDN-only currency policy for the low handle - the on track handle was higher than normal Saturday and normal Sunday.

I do think the CDN-only policy is dumb and short-sighted. Gives the Americans one more reason not to get a passport. If they had to do it, why not wait until after the passport deadline?

Anonymous said...

Your Sutherland would have won had she had the mount made me hit the replay screens this morning. On her 3 small field wins at Woodbine last year I didn't see anything spectacular. At Santa Anita she ended up wide and last. I suggest that a jockey doesn't get the track bias by the eye but by experiencing it. Calvin did such on Friday in the 4th, 5th and especially the 7th races. In the 7th on Miss Isella he kept coming even when the 1-2 shot tried to put him thru the rail. He knows Churchill because he rides there.

Scott said...

railbirdbrad - you got 17-1 on a horse which would have started 3 or 4-1. That's the whole point with betting antepost or futures markets - a much higher price is available because half the risk is the horse actually being there on the day.
Had you backed it on Betfair on the long-term (not day-of-race) market, you could have traded out before the field was declared and locked in a profit...

railbirdbrad said...

Scott-i did bet on bet fair but i didnt want to lay it off as i saw the Derby as a 1 horse race.