07/24/2012 5:41PM

Horse racing around the web: July 24, 2012


DRF Now will take an occasional look at horse racing coverage around the web.

Pittsburg Phil: 'A Big Loser,' 1897

Colin’s Ghost delves into the process and experiences behind one of Thoroughbred racing’s earliest and most successful bettors. Going back to an interview in the Philadelphia Inquirer from the summer of 1897, the piece examines his trial-and-error methods in the light of the slump of his career, which he had that summer.

“The Pittsburg Phil legend is of a near perfect horseplayer with a mind as sharp as a fine blade and the discipline of a monk. While accounts of his losses were not uncommon, stories of his success far exceeded those of failures. So, imagine my surprise when I came across an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer with one of the most intimate profiles of the great gambler that makes the legendary figure appear, well, human.” Read more »

Last summer, DRF’s Ryan Goldberg profiled Pittsburg Phil as “The Godfather of handicappers,” and DRF assembled a number of other newspaper clips that featured the horseplaying legend.

Frankel: The Most Valuable Racehorse Ever?

It may be impossible to answer the question of who was the best racehorse ever. But the most valuable? Forbes’ Teresa Genaro says that it might just be Frankel, a powerhouse on the British circuit.

“Breeding racehorses is a matter of probabilities, and Abdullah’s goal was always to manage the probabilities to make it possible to produce top-class horses. He and his management team have done it better than anyone else over the last 20 years, and Frankel is his just reward … He’s the best I’ve seen in my lifetime. He’s freakish.” Read more »

Lasix, the Third Rail of American Racing

Possible federal regulation of drug use within horse racing has been atop the news recently, with Senate hearings last week addressing the subject. DRF’s Matt Hegarty explains what happened in that hearing.

John Pricci, writing for Horserace Insider, looks at the hotly disputed issue of race-day Lasix, including examining the views of veterinarians, and tries to come up with a prescription for the industry.

Here’s one fair common-sense suggestion that already has been discussed to some degree: Horses currently on Lasix will continue to do so until retirement, but under stricter supervision. Choose a date in the future (January, 2014?) and eliminate raceday medication for that year’s 2-year-olds. If 2015 3-year-olds then must compete against elders on Lasix so be it, or remain in races restricted to 3-year-olds. Read more »