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Master of Hounds
By DRF Staff
|Barbara D. Livingston|
By Marcus Hersh
Stamina, some quality. He's at least close to good enough, and he should get the marathon trip.
There aren't many long races for 2-year-olds in Europe so consider those shorter races from 2010 he ran there with that in mind. Master of Hounds has been 1 3/16 miles and 1 1/4 miles in his two starts this year – which means trainer Aidan O'Brien (a strength in his own right) seems to think he’s at least a 1 1/4-mile horse – and he’s gained late ground in both of them. A 1 1/4-mile horse by Euro standards often is a 1 1/2-mile horse by ours, so voila – the Belmont.
That was a pretty decent Derby performance, too, coming from 15th to fifth in his first start on dirt and while chasing a slow pace. He has been pointed for this race since the Derby, and his connections bypassed a possible start in the English Derby in favor of a second dirt try. The BC Juvenile Turf didn’t flow his way, and that’s a pretty good third behind Casamento and Seville in the Racing Post Trophy Stakes.
He’s fresher than several horses in the race, and there’s precedent for an Irish-based Belmont winner, with Go and Go having won in 1990.
If he's at least close to good enough, he still may not be all that good. He's still eligible for an entry-level allowance, and he didn't beat much in his lone win. The UAE Derby field was all right but nothing extraordinary. And before going all Euro-crazy, consider that outside of Frankel, the 2011 class of 3-year-olds over there is not looking especially strong, either. He'll need some pace help up front, too.
Master of Hounds was 16-1 in the Derby, and to attain fair value, something like 12-1 would have to be offered in the Belmont. Play figures to be focused on Shackleford, Animal Kingdom, and Nehro, so if you like the Irish invader, playable odds should be available.
By Dan Illman
Kingmambo was bred to be a star. By the legendary Mr. Prospector out of two-time Breeders' Cup Mile heroine Miesque, Kingmambo raced exclusively in France, winning at distances ranging from six furlongs to a mile. He earned three Group 1 victories at a mile as a 3-year-old, including the French 2000 Guineas and the Prix du Moulin against older foes.
It could be argued that Kingmambo's most successful runners have raced on turf, but his son Lemon Drop Kid won the 12-furlong Belmont Stakes in 1999.
Kingmambo has crossed extremely well with Sadler's Wells mares. Japan Cup winner El Condor Pasa (also a Group 1 winner in France), French 1,000 Guineas winner Divine Proportions, and English 1000 Guineas heroine Virginia Waters are all results of this particular breeding "nick."
Master of Hounds is a half-brother to Eishin Apollon, a stakes winner going seven furlongs on grass in Japan who also succeeded at nine furlongs on turf.
The dam, Silk and Scarlet, won two of nine starts in Europe, including the Group 2 Robert H. Griffin Debutante Stakes going seven furlongs on grass at the Curragh. Both of her victories came sprinting. She is a half-sister to Danger Over, a Group 3 stakes winner on turf in France.
The third dam won the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes in England.
This is the female family of multiple Group 1 turf winners Sanglamore and Lydian.
Master of Hounds ran a solid fifth in the Kentucky Derby in his dirt debut, and the class in his pedigree may allow him to stay the additional distance of the Belmont Stakes. Still, there is a feeling that he may be best at distances between nine furlongs and 1 3/16 miles.
- 1.Posted 12/05/2013 04:54PM
- 2.Posted 12/08/2013 09:52AM
- 3.Posted 12/07/2013 07:42PM
- 4.Posted 12/07/2013 03:42PM
- 5.Posted 12/08/2013 06:53PM