Blasi Calls an Audible

Scott Blasi (Photo Credit: Michele MacDonald)Not long after dawn broke on Friday morning in Dubai, Scott Blasi decided to change plans with Curlin.

Instead of taking the Horse of the Year to the main track at Nad Al Sheba - where Curlin will try to capture the $6 million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) on Saturday - he opted to venture to the more secluded training track for the colt's final pre-race gallop.

While there were many disappointed fans and reporters who didn't get to see Curlin due to the unexpected switch, Blasi said he was pleased with the colt's one-mile gallop, which was more relaxed far from the whir of cameras and the chatter of onlookers at the busier main track.

"My job is to get him to the race as best as we can," Blasi explained later. "We've been really accessible to the media, but when it comes down to it, we've got to do what's best for the horse. He just had a nice, quiet morning and right now, he's standing in his stall safe and happy, and that's my main objective."

Indeed, keeping Curlin happy has been about Blasi's only objective for approximately a month and a half as he has lived in Dubai with the colt, attending to all his needs. Although the Kansas native who is used to overseeing dozens of horses for trainer Steve Asmussen has jokingly likened the experience to the movie Groundhog Day, in which each day is a repetition of the previous one, he has dealt with the stress of handling every detail for the horse rated the world's best while maintaining his sense of humor.

"We've trained him to win," he said simply. "Everything has gone right on schedule."

Yet during a special press conference with the international media on Friday, after which he was sought for interviews with Australian television and English radio stations, Blasi admitted that "there is a tremendous amount of pressure."

Shortly afterward, he was laughing, however, saying that when gets asked questions he doesn't particularly want to answer he responds by "talking in circles."Curlin on the training track, 3/28/08. (Photo Credit: Michele MacDonald)

"I used to get really nervous early on," he said more seriously of his experience in the spotlight. "But now I just try to answer questions truthfully."

It's clearly evident that Blasi regards Curlin as a breed apart from the other horses he has handled and that he views this rather strange interlude in his life as a step toward that rare plateau in racing to which only exceptional horses can carry those associated with them.

When asked about why Dubai World Cup has been selected as the path to that goal, he mentioned the legendary status of previous winners like Cigar and Dubai Millennium.

"We just feel like Curlin is a great horse and he needs every chance to prove it," Blasi declared. "He has a chance to define himself in that manner on Saturday night."

9 Comments

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Gregg Anderson

What you did last year was great!!! No horse in history acomplised so much so fast!!!! What you could do this year is of lengendary epic-proportions!!!!

GOOD LUCK CURLIN

28 Mar 2008 4:35 PM
Abbie Knowles

I am really looking forward to the Dubai World Cup Day truly one of the greatest days racing in the World!  I love Curlin, A P Arrow, Happy Boy and Jalil and do not mind who wins as long as all the horses and jockeys come back safely.  Curlin is a very beautiful and great horse but has some way to go to match Cigar's 16 straight wins and the prize money is much higher than in Cigar's day.  It should be a memorable day with a lot of the best horses in the world in action!

28 Mar 2008 5:08 PM
ERK

'A horse gallops with his lungs, perservers with his heart and wins with his character." - Federico Tesio

Curlin, your lungs, heart, and most of all your character have made you a winner. You've got what it takes to be a world champion. Win and then please come home safely.  We need you.

Good Luck - Barbaro will be watching!!!!

28 Mar 2008 5:39 PM
Gunfighter

"What you did last year was great!!! No horse in history acomplised so much so fast!!!! What you could do this year is of lengendary epic-proportions!!!!

GOOD LUCK CURLIN

Gregg Anderson"

You ever hear about LAMMTARRA?

4-4

Washington Singer Stakes

Epsom Derby,King

George VI & Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes,

Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe

28 Mar 2008 6:13 PM
draynay

Last year during the Jockey gold cup Lawyer Ron took off in the stretch like few horses ever have... Curlin is the only horse that could catch him that day or any other day.  Curlin will dominate with ease he has finally grown up.... Bring on Curlin vs. Big Brown....lol...

28 Mar 2008 7:17 PM
christy tate

go curlin go!

28 Mar 2008 8:20 PM
Afleet Alex_101

Curlin, I will be praying for you boy! I know you can win! :) Best of luck beautiful boy! Prayers for a safe race, and an easy win!

28 Mar 2008 11:41 PM
Cheryl G

GOOD LUCK CURLIN!!!!!! ONLY 7 HOURS AWAY AND I'M NERVOUS FOR YOU BEAUTIFUL BOY!! TRY NOT TO GET NERVOUS, WE WILL ALL LOVE YOU REGARDLESS IF YOU WIN OR LOSE. I'VE BEEN ON THIS RIDE WITH YOU THRU THE GREAT RACES & SOME NOT SO GREAT RACES TOO!!

ONE THING I DO WANT TO EXPRESS TO SCOTT IS A HUGE THANK YOU!!! I NOTICED VERY EARLY ON IN CURLIN'S CAREER HOW SCOTT TOOK SUCH GREAT CARE OF CURLIN AND WAS ALWAYS THERE FOR HIM!! STEVE IS AWESOME TOO, BUT OBVIOUSLY HE'S A VERY BUSY MAN!! ROBBY IS ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL TOO -- I THINK I COULD GO ON FOREVER ABOUT THE ENTIRE "CURLIN TEAM!!"  :>)

OK, I NEED TO GET SOME REST!!

GOOD LUCK BEAUTIFUL CURLIN,

I LOVE U,

CHERYL

29 Mar 2008 3:18 AM
Bellwether

THE STEAMROLLER...good luck to ALL the Horses & Jocks...bet that is one hell of sight to see on Sat. nite...& one day i just might do that!!!

29 Mar 2008 4:49 AM

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