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Column Companion: HOTY and Grade 1's
By Steven Crist
Here, in conjunction with the Sunday column, is the list of Grade 1 victories by the 39 winners of the Horse of the Year award in their championship year since the graded-stakes system was instituted in 1973.
As noted in the column, this list (drawn from the past performances in the DRF Press book Champions), may seem somewhat misleading because some stakes races now listed as Grade 1's did not have that status at the time, (e.g. Secretariat's 1973 Canadian International, a Grade 2, or the respective victories by John Henry and Cigar in the inaugural runnings of the Arlington Million and Dubai World Cup.) It is an imperfect comparison of Horse of the Year campaigns but perhaps interesting and instructive.
2011 Horse of the Year was a Joke .. HDG who she Beat.......
No other Arc winner on that list aside from the greatest filly of them all...ALL ALONG!.
Zenyatta won her HOTY while only beating fillies/Mares. Poor Blame who beat better horses throughout that year, AND Zenyatta in the Classic. What else did he have to do??. That is Like Awesome Again in 1998. He won the Stephen Foster, Whitney,Hawthorne Gold Cup, saratoga handicap and BCC. Now compare that to Skip Away(who won the 98 HOTY).......The eclipse are a sham. In fairness Zenyatta beat fully deserved to win the 09 HOTY simply by who she beat in the Classic. Compared to all the Horses RA beat in all her races combined.
Based on the list above, my top three thoughts were 1) If I owned mares I would be breeding to Curlin and Point Given every chance I got for durability alone, 2) Sunday Silence being sent to Japan was a loss to our breeding industry here despite what Pedigree Purists would like to believe and 3) Rachel Alexandra's accomplishments in the Haskell, Woodward and Preakness will also be impressive.
Zenyatta's HOY is still a joke. No horse that made a living beating marginal Grade II f&m's on synthetics should be a HOY. Blame gave her weight in the BC Classic and she lost to him on the track. Guess the voters felt sorry her because she didn't win the previous year. I give her people credit for placing her in the races where she would pretty much have a paid workout.
Zenyatta also won the BC classic.
Black Tie Affair was the weakest winner. Dance Smartly should have been HOtY.
was 2011 that bad? HoY is a filly with only 3 grade ones, compared to the 5+ and wins over males for other female winners
I thought that you article was quite interesting and like the list as well.Nice job thank you very much,Jerry
Saint Liam won the Breeders Cup Classic, Not the JCGC. [Fixed-SC]
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