06/11/2008 9:44PM

The Trip, Cigar, Questions


Dan, also can you please put up the PPs on Cigar for the blog.  Cigar was a great example of an owner (Paulson) and trainer (Mott - he took over as trainer when the horse turned 4yo) working together to keep a star horse racing through the 6yo season - other than for geldings, we will likely not see this type of sportsmanship again...

Here are the lifetime past performances of the incomparable, invincible, unbeatable Cigar!  By the way, Alan, congrats on moving forward in the NHC contest!

Download cigar.pdf


Nice selections on Belmont day, Zaftig was a clever pick.  It looks like Darley might have another promising young horse - White Tie checked VERY hard early on in the race, and still only got beat a length.  What was the winning Beyer for the race?   It will be interesting to see if he goes straight to Godolphin off the sharp effort after the bad trip today.

White Tie, a $1.3M yearling by Unbridled's Song, earned an 82 Beyer for his fourth-place finish on Friday.  The winner, Sixthirteen, received an 85 Beyer.  White Tie's second dam, the Fappiano mare Jeano, was a multiple Grade 3 winner.  The third dam, Basie (by In Reality), won the Grade 1 Delaware Handicap in 1985.  A direct descendant of the great La Troienne, White Tie hasn't been moved to Godolphin just yet (according to the horse list on their website).



...While reading the posts here I wondered-when were medications leagalized?? Have there been no TC winners since meds have been allowed?? That would be a very startling (kind of) statistic...

Lasix was finally allowed in New York in 1995 so there hasn't been a Triple Crown winner since Lasix was admitted on an across-the-board basis in the United States.


On a sidenote, does anyone know of a two-year-old named Clermont Green?
A.P. Indy - Harmony Lodge by Hennessy.
Has he worked out yet? Who trains him? Dan...any help would be appreciated?

Clermont Green hasn't recorded an official workout yet. 


As I have been tracking Arlington and Woodbine it is very obvious that the PolyTrack at Turfway, Woodbine and Arlington are completely differenct tracks than Del Mar and Keeneland. If you look at the times for 6F, the fastest last year at Del Mar was 1:11, but at Arlington it is 1:08. How can two "identical surfaces" have such a disparity. This is not true of Cushion or Tapeta. Unless they are different formulations.
Anyone have any ideas??
Steve T

Temperature and wind variations affect synthetic surfaces differently.  Woodbine can be a wind tunnel at times, and that may affect the fractions somewhat.  The Turfway surface has to withstand the cold while the Del Mar polytrack must overcome the intense heat of a Southern California summer.  Also, these tracks obviously have different racing superintendents, and their crews may treat the surface differently.  I think it's safe to handicap these surfaces by thinking that a polytrack isn't a polytrack isn't a polytrack.  They all have their own little quirks.


Would be interested in any thoughts you would have about Todd Pletcher in regards to his first time starters. It seems to me (I have not checked the stats) that for the past year his firsters have not been sharp. The latest example being on belmont day in the 2nd or 3rd race.  His horses don't even seem to be taking money anymore.
Seeking the Gold

I still think that he, along with Steve Asmussen, rank as two of the best first-out trainers in the world.  You don't get value on a Pletcher firster, and that may make the failures (beaten favorites) more notable, but he still wins more than his fair share.  Here are some stats according to Formulator 4.1:

Todd Pletcher - Debut Runners
Last year:  29-151 (19%, $1.41 ROI)
Past two years:  56-294 (19%, $1.41 ROI)
Past three years:  90-463 (19%, $1.52 ROI)
Past four years:  112-584 (19%, $1.46 ROI)
Past five years:  137-703 (19%, $1.47 ROI)

Remarkably consistent from a win percentage standpoint.  Pletcher just didn't have the stock during his summer-long slump at Saratoga last year, but I'm expecting a better showing from his barn with firsters this year.

With favored debut runners during the last year, Pletcher's runners are 16-41 (39%, $1.80 ROI) so he's only sent out the chalk 27% of the time.  That's down from 29% from a two-year period, 30% from over a three-year time frame, and 32% over the past four and five years.  According to the stats, his runners are taking slightly less money in recent seasons.


...The Robert Lewis S. winner Crown Of Thorns looked to me too be a very talented horse. (Dan any word of recovery on COT?)...

Crown of Thorns suffered a stress fracture in his left front leg.  The injury required surgery, and two screws were reportedly inserted into the cannon bone.  We may see him back on the track by the end of the year.  You can follow his recovery on our Disabled List on the right hand side of the blog.


Is there an update on War Pass? Are LaPenta/Zito playing to bring him back in Saratoga?

War Pass suffered a fractured sesamoid bone in his left front leg, and is going to be out for a bit.  It was reported in late April that his leg would be x-rayed again at the end of June before a decision would be made concerning surgery. 


Is there a database of every runner that can be queried? I am looking for a source of every runner for a given sire that has run on Polytrack. This is the missing denominator. If I can get access to that database I can offer real, accurate PolyPed ratings. Equibase? Jockey Club?
Trying to get this up and going by the start of Del Mar.
Steve T

I'd start with either Equibase or with the DRF Customer Service department.  If not, then the Jockey Club would probably have the information.  I'm guessing you'd have to pay for the data, but I'm sure they could run an SQL from the database.


Alan More than 1 year ago
Steve V., Good luck with Bustin Stones!! He's brought us lots a joy already this year and your team has handled his success with enormous class!! Congratulations!!! Are you running anybody Sunday at Belmont???
Blue Horseshoe More than 1 year ago
Sobhy, That's great stuff!!!
Alex More than 1 year ago
Riley - I just saw that your Dad will be training Adriano. Congratulations! Any chance he'll point him to the two 3YO turf stakes races in Virginia?
johnnyz More than 1 year ago
Guys and Gals, sorry about the partial post @ 11.32. My complete post hit at 12:17? Don't know how that happened. Just have to wonder if that is an omen to bet alot, or bet small tomorrow? Sobhy Sonbol, thanks for the generous analysis, and the pictures. Jehan has a nice pedigree, that with some good works is enough for me to put a few bucks on her! Good luck with all your entrants this weekend!
Alan More than 1 year ago
Sobhy, Thank you so much!! Jehan is striking - just look at her eyes - she is so focused!! She certainly looks like a future star - and the future starts later today!!! Fieldstone looks great also, but that Jehan... BTW, no great loss if Fieldstone has to wait a race. Asmussen has a couple of live ones here as well - 2ndTS War Lap and FTS (by Lion Heart) That's a Good Thing. Good luck this weekend!!!
PGM More than 1 year ago
Vicstu, (later: Mike,) According to my Magic Eight Ball and Ouija Board, "Reasons Unclear".
PGM More than 1 year ago
Hillbilly, They do something similar to what you suggest in Canada. The Sovereign Awards require a minimum of three starts on Canadian soil.
James Mc. More than 1 year ago
Steve V: It was a very fast pace, but Congaree was up on the pace much more so than PG was, and Congaree still finished well in front of PG, so there is no way, IMO, that PG wins the race regardless.
Mike More than 1 year ago
How ridiculous it is that Delosvientos got a 107 Beyer, while Da' Tara got a 99, when Da' Tara was a second faster.
Steve V. More than 1 year ago
James Mc, PG was probably too close to one of the fastest paces ever in the Derby, and had nothing left for the stretch drive. (IMO)