07/15/2008 9:32PM

Beyers, comments, landed in SoCal


Let's take a look at the winning Beyer Speed Figures for last week's stakes races:

*Delaware (Del): Hystericalady (J. Hollendorfer/G. Gomez) - 108
*Azalea (Crc):  Indyanne (G. Gilchrist/R. Baze) - 108
*Poker (Bel):  Kip Deville (R. Dutrow Jr./C. Velasquez) - 108
*Princess Rooney (Crc):  Mistical Plan (D. O'Neill/C. Nakatani) - 108
*Man o'War (Bel):  Red Rocks - Ire (B. Meehan/J. Castellano) - 108

*Smile Sprint (Crc):  Benny the Bull (R. Dutrow Jr./E. Prado) - 105
*Arlington (AP):  Stream Cat (G. Arnold II/J. Graham) - 105
*R. R. M. Carpenter Jr. (Del):  Five Steps (C. Grove/J. Acosta) - 103
*Bob Harding (Mth):  Fagedaboudit Sal (L. Carvajal Jr./P. Fragoso) - 102
*Carry Back (Crc):  Golden Spikes (M. Wolfson/E. Trujillo) - 102
*Harold V. Goldman Memorial (LS):  Gold Coyote (W. Calhoun/B. Walker Jr) - 101
*Swaps (Hol):  Tres Borrachos (C. Greely/T. Baze) - 101
*Dr. James Penny Memorial (Pha):  Sharp Susan (W. Mott/K. Desormeaux) - 100
*Sunset (Hol):  Warning Zone (J. Sadler/M. Smith) - 100

*Inside the  Beltway (Bel):  Buffalo Man (C. Gambolati/E. Coa) - 97
*Modesty (AP):  Communique (G. Arnold II/R. Douglas) - 96
*Barbaro (Del):  Magical Forest (J. DeMola/J. Chavez)- 96
*Robert G. Dick Memorial (Del):  Palmilla (J. Sheppard/R. Homeister Jr.) - 96
*Dance Smartly (WO):  The Niagara Queen (S. Asmussen/J. McAleney) - 96
*Delaware Oaks (Del):  Proud Spell (J. Jones/G. Saez)- 95
*Light Hearted (Del):  Smart and Fancy (A. Dutrow/R. Dominguez) - 95
*Caesar Rodney (Del):  Wheels Up At Noon (P. Fout/J. Castellano) - 95
*Repercussion (WO):  Marina Ballerina (S. DiPasquale/J. Stein) - 94
*Ky Alta (NP):  Arkhill (C. MacPherson/R. Walcott) - 93
*John McSorley (Mth):  Rouse the Cat (O. Figgins III/C. VanHassel) - 93
*Ladnesian (Hst):  El Sinaloense (J. Olmos/P. Alvarado)  - 92
*Vacaville (Sol):  Kalookan Dancer (W. Solis/L. Contreras) - 91
*Oh Say (Del): M J's Enchanteur (S. Lake/A. Castellano Jr.) - 91
*Prince of Wales (FE):  Harlem Rocker (T. Pletcher/E. Coa) - 90
*French Colonial (Bel):  Willsboro Point (S. Schwartz/E. Coa) - 90

*New York Derby (FL):  Tin Cup Chalice (M. Lecesse/P. Rodriguez) - 89
*Long Branch (Mth):  Truth Rules (N. Zito/S. Elliott) - 89
*Allen Bogan Memorial (LS):  Wrenice (R. Mayfield/C. Bourque) - 89
*John Patrick (NP):  Holy Nova (M. Beveridge/M. Gutierrez) - 88
*American Derby (AP):  Tizdejavu (G. Fox/R. Douglas) - 88
*Valor Farm (LS):  Valid Lilly (S. Asmussen/L. Quinonez) - 88
*Leemat (PID):  Whistle Pig (A. Carter/E. King Jr.) - 88
*Assault (LS):  Crook's Adventure (C. Asmussen/B. McNeil) - 87
*Serena's Song (Mth):  Dance Hall Days (A. Dutrow/J. Lezcano) - 86
*Brookmeade (Cnl):  Debbie Sue (H. Smith/M. Franklin) - 86
*Audubon Oaks (ElP):  Closeout (T. Proctor/J. McKee) - 85
*Daryl Wells Sr. Memorial (FE):  Stonetown (N. Randall/C. Griffith) - 83
*JJ's Dream (Crc):  Additional Prayer (T. Oliver/R. Baze) - 82
*Toronto Cup (WO):  Secret Getaway (M. Stidham/E. Wilson) - 82
*Timber Music (Hst):  What R The Odds (M. Snow/F. Perez) - 81
*Texas Stallion (fillies) (LS):  Sweetacious (W. Calhoun/E. Martin Jr.) - 80

*George Lewis Memorial (Tdn):  Catlaunch (I. Vazquez/I. Gonzalez) - 79
*Ernie Samuel Memorial (FE):  Klissura (K. Attard/J. Baird) - 78
*Solano County Juvenile (Sol):  Babs Moossa (J. Hollendorfer/W. Antongeorgi III) - 77
*Texas Stallion (males) (LS):  Early Final (W. Calhoun/M. Berry) - 77
*Ga Ha (PID): Miss Blue Tye Dye (R. Reid Jr./F. Pennington) - 77
*Derby Trial (AsD):  Mr Exspeedient (C. Willson/T. Nelson) - 75
*Frank Gomez Memorial (Crc):  Red Nation (J. Shaw/R. Fuentes) - 75
*Shady Well (WO):  Cawaja Beach (S. Fairlie/D. David) - 73

*Niagara (FL):  Karakorum Katie (J. Jerkens/J. Davila Jr.) - 67
*CTBA Futurity (ArP):  Dance to the Star (K. Gleason/A. Ramos) - 61
*Angie C. (EmD):  Super Dixie (D. Harwood/J. Gutierrez) - 60

*CTBA Lassie (ArP):  Illusive Crystals (K. Gleason/A. Ramos) - 51

*Edmonton Juvenile (NP):  Robo Willie (G. Tracy/R. Walcott) - 49
*Boise Thoroughbred Derby (Boi):  Beefheart (T. Garrett/D. Crane) - 48
*Princess Margaret (NP): Bodgits Lady (D. MacDonald/J. Barton) - 44
*Capital City Futurity (Lnn):  Wholelotta Richter (A. Slack/D. Herber Jr.) - 42
*Sales (MD):  Chief Shaheen (J. Hunter/A. Scarlett) - 41 

*Hoover (RD):  Raise the Reward (T. Hamm/A. DeLeon) - 36

Here are the lifetime past performances for the week's high/low Beyer stakes performers:

Download HighLow.pdf


Just touched down at San Diego, and am looking forward to meeting any and all bloggers this week.  I'll be the guy wearing too much sunscreen, and hanging out in the paddock where the horses leave the walking ring and head out onto the track. 

I think it's going well thus far.  Once I boarded the plane, an attractive brunette gave me the once-over, and said, "You're pretty lucky."

"Well, I don't think luck has much to do with it," I suavely replied.  "You have to give credit to excellent genetics, a strict diet, and a great workout program.  You don't get to look like this overnight, you know."

(Awkward pause)

"I meant you were lucky you got the window seat."

(Cue 5 1/2 hours of silence)


Great job with the homework assignment!  Lots of interesting opinions.

Will be back with the Opening Day recap after the races.

Take care,


GunBow More than 1 year ago
I don't want to be rude, so before posting any more, I think I should introduce myself, given how tight this community seems. I am 33 years old and live in the Detroit area. However, I developed my love for thoroughbred racing growing up in Southern California, where I lived until 99'. I became interested in the sport in 1989, and although I lived in Cali, my first love was Easy Goer (although I do concede Sunday Silence was better). The 89' Triple Crown was magical, and my passion for the sport was strong enough to withstand the terrible 1990 season which culminated with Go Fow Wand's death in the Breeders Cup. The early 90s was actually a terrible time to be a young fan of thoroughbred racing. Not only did you have a rash of catastrophic injuries and a dearth of quality runners, but the trends which have today become commonplace were just starting to gain notice: breeding before racing, early retirements, increasing injuries, dwindling attendance, decreasing attention from the national media, widespread use of legal/illegal medications (I remember when there were actually races in which every horse was not on lasix and when lasix was banned in NY), shortening of historic races (Jockey Club Gold Cup went to 1mile 1/4 directly as a result of Easy Goer's loss in BCClassic), and racetracks losing money and having to close. Because these trends were relaively new, I remember being genuinely afraid that in 20 years the sport would be unrecognizable, if it was still alive at all. Of course I was young and prone to overreaction, although many older and more knowledgeable fans were quite concerned. Some of the negative trends, such as the decline in attendance, were so sudden and precipitous that even the most optimistic couldn't ignore. In 1985 a record 85,000 attended the Santa Anita Handicap; within 6 years the number had been cut in half. I know the sport isn't exactly healthy these days, but at least the problems are being addressed and there is the belief that the sport will survive. And there have been some positive developments recently. The Triple Crown is stronger than it has ever been; in 1997, when Silver Charm was the 1st horse in 8 years to sweep the Derby and Preakness, the Belmont drew 70,000, almost double that of 95', but 50k less than what Smarty drew. The Breeders Cup has quadrupled in age since 90' and has firmly etablished itself as an international event. The sport has become truly global with events such as the Dubai World Cup, Japan Cup, Melbourne Cup, Arc day, Royal Ascot, Hong Kong's April and December festivals drawing horses from across the world. In places like Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, and Dubai the sport is extremely popular and this has produced ripples in the US as we see more of those horses coming here for big races and more of our horses shipping there to capitalize on the rising purses. Even in the US, tracks like Santa Anita, Del Mar, and Saratoga have experienced a resurgence. Santa Anita, in particular, has been increasingly successful in attracting 20 and 30 somethings; in my recent visits to Cali and Santa Anita, I have been pleasantly surprised by how many young folks are at the track. It would appear that shows such as the Sopranos and Entourage and the Seabiscuit movie have successfully connected racing to the "hipster" movement and, in doing so, has introcduced a new generation to the sport. 15 years ago I felt like the only young person at the track. Today, especially on days connected with a micro-brew festival or alternative radio concert, I see alot of young couples and groups of young people (particlarly guys), many dressed in fadoras for the retro Rat Pack look. For the most part, the quality of racing has been better the last 5 years than the first half of the 90s. As a person who got into the sport in 89-90, I came to think that a horse that wins 4 straight grade 1s is an all-time great. Between Easy Goer/Sunday Silence and Holy Bull the top horses (Criminal Type, Farma Way, In Excess, Ap Indy, Best Pal, Betrando, The Wicked North) would win 4, maybe 5, big races in a row and then would invariably lose. Thus, Holy Bull was met with such excitement not only because he was very talented, but it had been 5 years since a top horse was able to put together a streak of any duration. Going into the 94' Woodward, Holy Bull had won the Met Mile, Dwyer, Haskell and Travers in a row, and with Beyers of 122, 119, 115, and 115. Having seen so many hyped-up horses run poorly after winning a few races, I was dubious of Holy Bull. Of course, the Bull destroyed the Woodward field by 5 to earn Horse of the Year; he was the first truly top-shelf male horse I had seen from the beginning of his career (wasn't a fan during Easy Goer and Sunday Silence's 2 year old seasons.) Of course, when Cigar came along I was simply dumbfounded. Unlike those who became fans during the 70s and before or who have became fans since 1995, I did not believe it possible for a horse to win 6 straight major races, let alone 16, of which 12 were grade 1. Needless to say, I continued to pick Cigar to lose after the 95 Mass Cap (8th straight win), and was certain the racing gods were going to foil his attempt to go undefeated in the 95' Breeders Cup Classic. Perhaps had I grown up in the 70s, Cigar's accomplishments wouldn't have seemed so impossible. However, 12 years later I continue to be amazed by what Cigar did. As for the Triple Crown races, there was not alot of excitemnt to report. Each year, after my "crushes" failed in the Derby, I was forced to take solace in "human interest" stories such Pat Day finally getting over the hump, the philanthropist Paul Melon and old-fashioned Mack Miller winning with Sea Hero, and the "breath of fresh air" Nick Zito winning two in four years. For a teenager, however, I was much more interested in the horses than their connections. For the most part, the runners in the Triple Crown during that period were not particlarly inspiring. The 92' and 93' crops featured what were mostly mediocre horses running slow races. Lil'E Tee and Sea Hero won the Derby with less than 105 Beyers, Prarie Bayou won the 93' Preakness with a 98 Beyer, and in Colonial Affair's Belmont, Prarie Bayou broke down and was euthanized. In the triple Crown races of 92', 93', and 95' only one horse (AP Indy) won a race with a Beyer over 110. The 97' Triple Crown was eye-opening not only because each race was an absolute classic and a horse won the first two legs; these horses were running fast, with Beyers of 115 (photo finish), 118 (three horse photo), and 110 (with three horses within 2 lengths). Just as remarkably, it was the same horses that were consistently running fast (Silver Charm, Free House, Touch Gold, Captain Bogit). Compared to the early 90s, we have become spoiled by the Triple Crowns of recent years. Not only have seven horses won the Derby and Preakness since 97', the Triple Crown runners have been talented: Big Brown, Curlin, Street Sense, Hard Spun, Rags to Riches, Barbaro, Bernardini, Afleet Alex, Smarty Jones, Funny Cide, Empire Maker, Peace Rules, Ten Most Wanted, War Emblem, Point Given, Congaree, Monarchos, Fusaichi Pegasus, etc. I know too many have retired early, but at least we had them for the time we did.
Hillbilly More than 1 year ago
Cali Bob, Referring to Synthetics. I think they are wrong for the sport. They seem to make average horses good and great horses average. Lava Man, Tiago, Ravel, how many really good California dirt horses are there, who are no longer a factor in the Handicapp division because of synthetics? You say their all different but how because of the mixture or the way their put down, I understand all of that stuff I've held it in my hands. The stuff isn't dirt, Belmont's dirt isn't the same as CD's and so on, but they are all dirt. Synthetics are the result of other problems this industry has (Drugs, Breeding, Etc) that those in power don't want to address because it may affect their bottom line, so those same people have pushed synthetics to generate more revenue for themselves while being able to say we've been pro-active in dealing with break downs, injuries etc. Enough rambling here is my point! Everybody has an agenda in this business and thats to make as much money as possible, as quickly as possible, as the statistics come in we are seeing these surfaces are no safer nationwide than traditional surfaces. They are just making the people whom market them, some of them the same people whom resist drug regulation and reform lots of money without seeming like bad guys. Maybe I'm just some guy who is clueless but thats my opinion.
Kenny Mac More than 1 year ago
Since the emergence of bsf's in the drf a once commonly used handicapping reference point(back in the day) has been discarded by most of today's handicappers. I'm referring to the track variant. Ok it's got its flaws, but I still find it a handy handicapping factor from time to time. I like to find horses showing early speed on days when the variant is relatively high.(>18) Yesterday at Delmar I tabbed Khun Dan(12-1), winner of the 9th -$882 super and Angels Reward (14-1) third in the 7th $162 tri(shoulda played the super -$2844). Consider making this a reference point in your handicapping. Good luck to all.
Hillbilly More than 1 year ago
CaliBOb, I know the differences I refer to it as Polycrap to make a point. They all should be done away with.
larryk More than 1 year ago
Thanks for your posts Gunbow. Glad you have a computer.
buffalo joe More than 1 year ago
GunBow, Young man you sure are long winded, but may I add I LOVE IT. I can feel your passion and love for this great sport, as well as your concern for its future. I also loved Easy Goer, and he is only behind the 2 greatest horses I have ever seen run in person, Northern Dancer and Secretariat. And please stay in love with this beautiful sport, as I have for some 50+ years since the first time I accompanied my father as a 10 year old to a Saturday afternoon at the races in 1953.
Annie More than 1 year ago
Gunbow, Welcome to the Formblog! Boy, you really are a fan. Very interesting post. You'll do just fine on here. Annie
Annie More than 1 year ago
Tinky, Thanks for the video of Montmartre! Boy, that is a long race; I got tired just watching it. lol He looks like a good one! Annie
GunBow More than 1 year ago
Sorry for the long intro post. I'm just a big racing fan who finally has a home computer/laptop! The biggest news of the week, of course, is...........the opening of Pinnacle Racecourse this Friday in metro Detroit. I jest, but as a person living in southeast Michigan, this IS a fairly big deal, although after the $50,000 Michigan-bred stakes opener, no race carries a purse over $15,000. I moved to the Detroit area from southern California in 99', the year the old Detroit Racecourse closed. The DRC wasn't much, but it was a home for the Michigan breds, was the site of five of Seabiscuit's races as a three year old, and the host of one of the most confusingly named races, the Michigan Mile (and an eighth). Between 99' and 2007, thoroughbred racing in Michigan moved to the former harness track, Great Lakes Downs. However, GLD was nearly 3 hours from Detroit, being located on the west coast of Michigan, and was actually closer to Chicago. So, it will be nice to be able to see thoroughbreds in person every weekend, if I so want. Having grown up in SoCal, I was definitely spoiled living so near to world class racing facilities. A significant positive of the last 9 years is that the lack of local thoroughbred racing forced me to travel to racetracks in the East and Midwest that I never would have attended had I still lived in Cali. Although not close to any tracks, Detroit is 2.5 hours from Thistledown, 3.5 hours from Hoosier Park, and, more importantly, only 4 hours from Woodbine, Arlington/Hawthorne, and Turfway Park/River Downs, 5.5 hours from Churchill and Keeneland, 8hrs from Pimlico, and 11 hours from Belmont/Aqueduct/Saratoga/Monmouth. I've found that there is nothing like circling a race months in advance and centering a weekend "mini vacation" around the ponies. Since 2000, Ive been to every Arlington Million but one, and all but two Breeders Cups. Ironically, one of the Breeders Cups I did not attend was at Arlington Park due to that track limiting attendance to 35,000 (approximately), and not allowing raceday ticket sales (with pre-purchased tickets being priced far too high). I started going to the Triple Crown races in 2004, trying to make 2 of the 3 a year, becoming an expert on where to watch the races with general admission. The Belmont Stakes is by far most kind to those with general admission, with the paddock open to all and standing room (and even a few stationary seats/chairs) on the 2nd and 3rd floors where one can view the races easily. I've found that at Churchill Downs on Derby day, while it is difficult to view the races from the infield, if one is willing to walk alot, there is enough space in the paddock area to watch the horses being saddled for the Derby (and other stakes) and enough time to then make it back to the infield and see a portion of the race (while watching the rest of the race on the huge infield screens). I usually stand in the infield just a few hundred yards before the wire, from where I can see the first and last quarters of the race, and then watch post-race celebrations. Of course it helps alot to be 6'7". Another benefit of not having lived near a thoroughbred track is that, in an attempt to get my racing fix, I was introduced to harness racing, which is more popular in Michigan than the thoroughbreds. Harness racing is also big in Ontario, Indiana, Illinois, and Ohio, so I had the opportunity to watch some fairly big races and good horses. For those thoroughbred racing fans who want the horses to run a couple of times a month, for nine months a year, and for a number of years, perhaps harness racing is your true sport. One thing about pacers and trotters, you certainly do develop a connection with the horses because they run so frequently. Last Sunday at the small Raceway Park in Toledo, I saw a 10 year old named Spastic win the 45th race of his career, making his 225th start! And like thoroughbred racing of the 18th and 19th centuries, most of the harness stakes are run in heats, sometimes even on the same day!
vicstu More than 1 year ago
Slew and anyone else interested in Big Brown, Here is a link to a Steve Haskin article asking "Where's Waldo, I Mean, Big Brown." In it, Haskin points out how BB has basically fallen off the face of the earth, and how much the connections have been at odds with the media: http://cs.bloodhorse.com/blogs/horse-racing-steve-haskin/archive/2008/07/15/where-s-waldo-i-mean-big-brown.aspx Interesting. Especially the fact his last breeze (which was published and was pretty good) was virtually ignored by the turf media.