06/16/2016 12:00PM

Crist: Frosted ran off the screen and to the top of the Beyer scale

Barbara D. Livingston
Frosted earned a 123 Beyer for his 14 1/4-length win in the Met Mile.

There were so many strong performances in Grade 1 races at Belmont Park last Saturday that the afternoon still seems like a blur of excellence. There were the dominant victories by the fillies Carina Mia in the Acorn, Cavorting in the Phipps, and Celestine in the Just a Game; there was a powerful season debut from Flintshire, the best grass horse in the country; and a dramatic triumph by Creator over Destin in the Belmont Stakes.

It was another race, however, that towered over all: Frosted’s breathtaking triumph in the Metropolitan Handicap. A generation from now, this is a race that will still be remembered for its sheer speed and brilliance.

Frosted won by a widening 14 1/4 lengths, nearly double Conquistador Cielo’s 1982 record margin for the race. His raw time of 1:32.73 for a mile was the fastest in the Met’s 125-year history and translated to a Beyer Speed Figure of 123 – the highest of the roughly 375,000 races run in North America since Midnight Lute earned a 124 in winning the 2007 Forego at Saratoga.

The first three-quarters of this Met Mile did not suggest that history would be made. Frosted was three to four lengths behind a solid but sensible pace of 23.42 and 45.95 seconds, then drew within a half-length of Anchor Down through six furlongs in 1:09.45. Then the goosebumps began. Frosted seemed to rebreak, running his final quarter faster than his first. His splits for the race were 23.42, 22.53, 23.50, and 23.28, with Joel Rosario wrapping up on him a few strides before the finish line.

The Belmont track was very quick Saturday, but the giant speed figure was straightforward, with several other stakes races at a mile or 1 1/16 miles on the card. Carina Mia’s Acorn went in 1:34.97, and the one-mile times of the Easy Goer and the Phipps were 1:34.00 and 1:34.02. The somewhat-modest winning figures of 99 for the Acorn, 100 for the Easy Goer, and 102 for the Phipps were made with the same track variant that was applied to the Met. The Belmont Stakes time of 2:28.51 was nearly 56 seconds slower than the Met for an additional half-mile.

Granted, this Met Mile field was not a strong one – the 10 entrants had earned a combined $9 million but won just two Grade 1 stakes – and no one but the winner fired his best shot. Gigantic speed figures usually require perfect storms, and Frosted had everything break in his favor, but there is no denying the excellence of the performance.

The 123 Beyer matches the career tops of Candy Ride, Saint Liam, and Silver Charm and has been exceeded by only nine horses in the 24 years that the figures have been published in Daily Racing Form: Ghostzapper (128); Formal Gold, Gentlemen, and Will’s Way (126s); Bertrando and Skip Away (125s); and Artax and Midnight Lute (124s).

As Met Miles during that period have gone, Frosted’s 123 has been exceeded only by Ghostzapper’s 124 in 2005 and was a point in front of Holy Bull’s 122 in 1995. While those two went on to Horse of the Year titles and Hall of Fame plaques, Frosted will have to do more just to take the leadership of the older-male Eclipse division from California Chrome, who beat him by 6 1/2 lengths in the Dubai World Cup.

Frosted’s connections, Godolphin Stables and trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, plan to stretch him back out to nine furlongs in races such as the Whitney or Woodward. Then they will decide if they have a contender for the Breeders’ Cup Classic or the Dirt Mile. Frosted has never been remotely as impressive in his two-turn races, with a previous career-best 106 Beyer in winning the Pennsylvania Derby. He was no match for American Pharoah in four tries against him, and his lone previous Grade 1 win was a moderate Wood Memorial victory over Tencendur and El Kabeir.

Did Frosted turn a huge corner as a racehorse last Saturday, now ready to take on all comers, or did he find his perfect calling as a one-turn miler? That’s going to be one of the most intriguing questions of the second half of the racing season. Whatever the case, his Met Mile will stand as one of historic quality.

Scott Samuel More than 1 year ago
I am very glad that Frosted won the Met Mile and that he received such a high BSF.  While I think that Beyer Speed Figures are for the most part, bogus, Frosted's win in emphatic fashion even further shows the greatness of American Pharoah.  Every time that Frosted lined up against AP, he got smashed.  That said, let's take a moment to remember the spectacle that we were allowed to see in 2015 when AP ran.
Chris More than 1 year ago
With all due respect, and to take away nothing from him or AP, the Frosted today is not the same as the Frosted against AP.  As you know, horses mature and tend to get better with experience.  You cant make this equation.
Joel Firsching More than 1 year ago
Frosted ran without lasix in his first three races.  Then no lasix in dubai this year.  Tapit breeding is ideal at 8f and 8.5f and belmont.  It takes 20 seconds to complete a turn at CD or Pim and 30 seconds to complete a turn at Bel.  He has plenty of experience on Bel big turns.
Blaine MacMillan More than 1 year ago
If Frosted gotta 123, then Cavorting's Beyer is at least a 110....
Kristopher Marshall More than 1 year ago
Frosted's race was great, without a doubt.  But Beyers are a fine example of pseudo-science.  A handicapping tool, among many others.
JasmineTedesco More than 1 year ago
Bear in mind that BSFs at NY tracks and a few others (Tampa Bay, Golden Gate) tend to look inflated when those horses race in other places, while BSFs for most SoCal races tend to look deflated when those horses run further east.
gallopingtom More than 1 year ago
Holy Bull 1994, FYI.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago

would beat AP today, and any horse at a mile!
Greg Stevens More than 1 year ago
Do u even watch horse racing? He couldn't beat AP Indy at any track, any distance....even if Indy ran backwards 
clark More than 1 year ago
I think the AP stands for American Pharoah not AP
 Indy. Where have you been
Mark More than 1 year ago
Anyone know the faster Beyer of Easy Goer and Sunday Silence?
sal More than 1 year ago

I have been asking that question for years.

Good luck!

Darrell More than 1 year ago
124 for each of them in the Breeders Cup Classic. Most impressive by Easy Goer was his figs at 2. He ran a 116 in the Champagne along with a 110 and 113 in his prior 2 races I believe.
Joel Firsching More than 1 year ago
I dont beyers came out until 1992
Darrell More than 1 year ago
They were published via Bloodstock Research before 92 and obviously made for many years before that.
JacobBenDavid More than 1 year ago
Easy Goer ran in the 120's on a regular basis. 123  for his Belmont Stakes, 124 Classic with SS, a 122 Travers, 120-122's in the JC Gold Cup and Whitney and Suburban, 119 or 120 in his Gotham record mile; the fastest ever Beyer in any Triple Crown race (123 Belmont) since they were first published, and fastest Beyer (116 Champagne)  by any 2-year-old since they were first published.
Tom Crone More than 1 year ago
How can 134.4 be a 98 and 134.0 be a 100, that's impossible unless the track changed
Randy Taggart More than 1 year ago
The 1:34 was the mile fraction of a 8.5 furlong race. 
Larry Kaufman More than 1 year ago
i agree the track had to change in the 3 hours between race 5 and 9. and they are comparing met mile to fractional times   of 1 1/16 mile races
Larry Kaufman More than 1 year ago
123 is at least 10-13 points too high. frosted ran a great race,but calculator and aim's flatter didn't  run a step. this was a very weak field he beat and the beyer is ridiculous
Tom Crone More than 1 year ago
Totally agree
Darrell More than 1 year ago
He won by 14 1/4 lengths. That's 25-26 Beyer points. The runner up earned a ~97. That's more than reasonable - especially since this isn't a case of a race the fell apart. Rather the winner just took off in the stretch.

In your scenario no one else in the race would have earned a figure higher than the low 80's which is absurd.

This was indeed a weak field and that's reflected in the fact that no one else in the field even earned a triple digit Beyer - which is highly unusual for a race like the Met Mile and shows virtually every other horse backing up.