Pletcher and Borel So Different, Yet So Much Alike

From outwardly appearances, Todd Pletcher and Calvin Borel could not be more different. Pletcher is Mr. Smooth in every way--hair always neatly in place, dressed perfectly in finely-tailored suits, a master communicator, and a million dollar smile. He is the personification of class.

Borel is as blue-collar as they come. A country boy through and through. Grew up in Louisiana Cajun country and never forgot his roots. A racetrack junkie who is as comfortable on the backside as he is in street clothes. If he owns a suit, it is only for appearances on David Letterman. His hair and smile? Well, I'll leave that one alone.

Borel is not a regular rider for Pletcher, but the two hooked up on Super Saver last November for the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II) at the recommendation of WinStar racing manager Elliott Walden, who thought Borel would be a perfect fit for the son of Maria's Mon. He could not have been more right.

On Saturday, Pletcher and Borel made history on Super Saver. It was an important victory for both trainer and jockey--for different reasons.

For Pletcher, he shed the title as "Best trainer to never win a Derby," and completed a résumé that had a glaring omission. Now, fairly or not, Pletcher will be looked upon in a whole different light. With a Derby win, his reputation has changed from a guy that couldn't win the big one to a guy who has done it all. Pletcher would probably never admit it, but he feels 1,000 pounds lighter today--not from a monkey jumping off his back, but a gorilla. He will enjoy his Derby victory, but it will come in time. There was too much relief yesterday to feel joy.

Borel had no such pressure going into Derby 136, having won two of the last three. Yesterday's win was all gravy. While the victory was not needed to complete his résumé, it did put him in an elite class as one of the best to ever get a leg up in America's greatest race. His status as a Churchill Downs master was solidified. He officially owns that place.

As different as Pletcher and Borel are in some ways, they are also very alike in others. Both have an impeccable work ethic. Both are the definition of professional. Both are humble, easy-going gentlemen. Now, they are forever linked in Derby history, an unlikely pair brought together by fate. Only time will tell how far into immortality this colt will take them.

Derby 136 was a good story all around. Not only for Pletcher and Borel, but for WinStar, a classy ownership group that has invested a lot of money into this sport. Bill Casner, Kenny Troutt, Doug Cauthen, Elliott Walden, and the whole WinStar crew are quality people. Hats off to them, they are deserving winners.

And now, onto the Preakness...


Leave a Comment:

Ted from LA

I'm happy for Pletcher, but I couldn't bring myself to bet on a horse named Super Saver.  I hope he wins the Preakness.  It's good for the sport.

02 May 2010 9:08 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

It is a good combo. Class, and professionalism but Calvin needs to stop predicting and guaranteeing. That usually doesn't work out too well. You have to love Calvin though. Quite a character. Pletcher is the epitomy of class and treats his horses with great respect and care. If the odds weren't usually so low he'd be a great one to bet on more because he usually has his horses peaked and healthy. Enjoy The Derby win because there is very little chance of a Belmont or Preakness win for Super Saver. Pleasant Prince is the most formidable foe in The Preakness and Setsuko in The Belmont. I hope Lucky does run in The Preakness. He's bound to get a better trip and be able to show his stuff. I do believe a jockey change could help there. It just hasn't worked out and Lucky could be spooked by Gomez now. "Here comes Gomez, ohoh, here comes trouble." I don't believe that Super Saver is the stuff that Triple Crowns are made of eventhough he is a very good horse. If he does win The Preakness, then Borel still needs to learn how to ride in The Belmont, then you'll have Zito to contend with too(the best at getting a horse ready for The Belmont) If Super Saver wins The Triple Crown then I won't blog on Jason's blogs until April 15th 2020.

02 May 2010 9:24 PM

Super Saver is a great name with the current economy.  Super Saver will win the Triple Crown.  Get those Super Saver hats!!

02 May 2010 9:29 PM

I am happy as I can be for Pletcher, he deserves this.  I am not a great big fan of CB but in honest, I am so happy for him winning the derby, as he was getting ready to be the fall guy for RA loss on friday ,  thats the direction JJ was getting ready to send it.  I knew it wasnt' CB fault that her comp is just tougher this yeaar.  So congrats to you, Mr. Pletcher and even more congrats to you CB for a job well done, and if anyone wants a derby win, hook up with Calvin this year so you can have him for the next year (Kentucky Derby) that is if you want a sure fire win.......

02 May 2010 9:34 PM
Ohio Bred Girl

I don't know, now . . . As we're climbing out of recession, "Super Saver" might be the perfect name.

02 May 2010 9:36 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


  No problem. I had problems online too that cost me. I couldn't get in to get my final bets in. I wonder how much money was not wagered because of those bureaucratic snafus? It's spelled Drunkinbum, not Drunkenbum. You're thinking of the Irish version of the name. We're Scottish. No, you're not the only one, others have complained about too much Rachel and Zenyatta talk too but when they went to City Hall the receptionist said that The Mayor was at Zenyatta's Barn making googoo eyes at her and couldn't be reached for comment. What are ya gonna do? Fight City Hall? Usually the only race where there is trouble betting because of too much traffic is The Derby. Next year I think I'll just make Future Exacta wagers and be done with the whole mess.

02 May 2010 9:39 PM

Trebloc "Saver is a great name with the current economy.  Super Saver will win the Triple Crown.  Get those Super Saver hats!!"

Haw... I tried to buy one from a well known horse hat company and the only Derby Hopeful they didn't have was Super Saver.

02 May 2010 9:47 PM

May I suggest everyone join the Bo-rail game we had so much fun playing on Derby Day.  The rules are simple.  You bet on him to win every race, drink a beer or shot every time he wins and double your bet on him in the Derby. Think of the fun you would have had the last four years.  I guess Todd finally learned if you want to win the Derby put Bo Rail on one of your horses.  Good for him, he can win the big one.

02 May 2010 9:50 PM

I`m happy for Calvin and Pletcher. Calvin`s awsome, has a lot of character. :D And for Pletcher, anyone who`s become famous for Derby losses deserves to win for a change. lol

02 May 2010 10:05 PM
Tim G

Master communicator? Todd is articulate and well spoken but he's not the greatest interview. Witness the comments right after the race and in the post-race press conference.  Even John Asher asked if that was all...

I know Todd gives a lot of credit to Wayne, this comment by Todd said it all to me:

‘‘I can tell you what he gave me. I run my horses the way he does. I run my shed row the way he does. He raised the bar for all of us.’’

He's a nice guy on top of it, too.

Calvin's biggest issue is he can't go to Walmart, (something he enjoys from what I hear) any longer and avoid getting mobbed.

Lisa is the best thing that ever happened to Calvin, she's a sweet lady and they're both so nice and down to earth.

I do agree with Baffert though. Someone is going to have to shut off that rail if they ever want to win a Derby. Baffert suggested orange traffic cones. Not sure what I'd suggest other than not sitting there watching him do it. Nothing dirty or underhanded, just a little riding like you want to win as much as he does.

02 May 2010 10:18 PM
Paula Higgins

I agree with your first post Dr Drunkinbum. No Triple crown this year. Add Ice Box to the list of horses who will give Super Saver a run, probably in the Belmont.

Happy for Todd Pletcher, Calvin and Winstar. This is well deserved and I am so glad we will no longer have to see people ask Todd Pletcher how he felt about being 0-24. It was getting obnoxious. He handled it with grace and class at all times.

I am also worried that Calvin is going to be the fall guy for Rachel's near miss/win. No one is to blame for that, including the horse. He does the best he can on a great horse, who is doing the best she can, after last year's campaign.

02 May 2010 10:28 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


   Who are you picking to win the Derby in 2011? On a more serious note-

Have you heard how Eskendereya is doing?

02 May 2010 10:32 PM
Jason Shandler

Who cares what he says to the media Tim? Since what does communication have to do with a few interviews after the Derby? He was excited, but in his own way. At least he is real. He wasnt going for one-liners to please people like you.

The only communication he has to concern himself with is his employees, other owners, family, etc. And he is great at that. You couldnt be more wrong. He is a great communicator. Elliott said it. And Wayne even said it yesterday in the paddock after the race--to me!! That enough for you?

02 May 2010 10:38 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Ted from LA

  I kept re- reading your 9:08PM post to try to figure out what was so funny about it. I just didn't see any humor. I thought all of your posts included humor. I think I'm going to ask for my money back. What a ripoff.

02 May 2010 10:38 PM
Lise from Maine

Congratulations to Calvin Borel for a job well done, and Mr. Pletcher for his first Derby win.

I betted on Super Saver on a win.

Thank you Calvin Borel!

02 May 2010 10:50 PM
Tim G

Jason, I just meant he's not the dream interview. He's serious and focused. He communicates well with his owners and with his staff, I know that as well or better than you. But as far as being someone who attracts the casual fan? Not so much. I'm thinking that's what John Asher meant.

If you don't realize that helps the game? Hmmm. That seems to be what makes Calvin so popular, his exuberance and openly visible excitement. I know that's not Todd's style, never has been.

But Calvin garners the positive attention we need.

As far as one-liners I'm not a big fan of that, although Baffert has grown on me in recent years.

02 May 2010 10:55 PM
Tim G

Oh, by the way? YOU are the MEDIA.

Wayne's training on that? "Each of them has an agenda when he shows up so you take them where you want them to go not where they want you to go.’’

The people reading this blog don't know how he is with his clients and staff, they think of how he appears to them I would think, but maybe not. That and the fact that we need someone to promote our sport now more than ever is my point, although I have no issues with a guy like Todd.

02 May 2010 11:05 PM

Shut off the rail ? What does that mean Tim ? He hugs the rail unil he HAS to come off Watch his 3 wins in the Derby.  He knows when to make his run he has the timing and the feel of the race down pat.  If others want to watch tape and learn fine if not they can keep watching him walk off with the Derby win. I learned my lesson last year.  Bet your horse that you like and then put a  100 on Borel's head for the win. If you can't beat him join him, right?

02 May 2010 11:15 PM

It was a great win.  I agree that there will be no TC this year.  Borel likes the rail, and he will not get it so easily in the Preakness or Belmont.  There are a lot of horses in those races of equal ability, but I enjoyed seeing him win this one.  I knew it wouldn't be a win for Lookin at Lucky.  

02 May 2010 11:25 PM

I remember Baffert saying something last year about getting Borel to ride his derby horses in the future.  Owners and trainers need to start giving Calvin chances on their quality two year olds if they want him in the Derby, a la Elliot Walden.  Hey, riders like Gomez, Velasquez, and Dominguez are fantastic but in a big field on the horse racing world's biggest stage, they simply don't have the feel or the stones that Calvin does.

02 May 2010 11:26 PM

Ice Box is the definite Belmont threat and maybe the Preakness, too.

I have much respect for Calvin Borel and the joy of riding is evident in every mount and race he rides.

Pletcher sometimes is misunderstood. I think if people stopped & actually had a conversation with him, they would see more than the stiff persona that is often noted in the media. I think Todd is a "racing nerd," and I mean that in a good way. He eats, sleeps and breathes condition books.

Sometimes I think it would be great to see him with a barn about half the size he currently has, only because I think he could then really excel at the craft.

02 May 2010 11:27 PM

Contratulations to Super Saver and Calvin Borel. I am also glad that Todd Pletcher finally trained a horse to win the Kentucky Derby

02 May 2010 11:30 PM
Vic S - Stately Victor's #1 Fan

Great win for Calvin, Todd Pletcher and of course Super Saver.  I know many don't think that Super Saver has a shot at triple crown but think of it this way.  On avg. your Derby isn't won by 4+ lengths probably around 2 lengths.  Not one TC winner of the 70's won(the Derby) by more than 2 1/2 lengths!  The horse was hardly blowing and he galloped out well, it only appeared the Ice Box and Padyy O'Prado, Stately Victor galloped out better but if you watch from all angles he didn't let a horse pass him after the wire, he did what was needed to win and seemed within himself even if he was ridden to the wire.  He looks more like a TC winner to me that Big Brown ever did and he won by 5!  I'm a firm believer that a TC winner MUST have a solid 2 year old foundation lucky for us SS has that.  I'm not saying he is going to win the TC, my money is still all on Stately Victor to win the last 2 legs, BUT SS has a real good chance at making a legacy.  Let's not forget this horse also went off as the 2nd choice, not 20, 40, or 50-1.  Best of luck Super Saver and connections.  Stately Victor is my Preakness horse!

02 May 2010 11:32 PM

I am so happy for Pletcher, that he finally got his Derby win.  Unless someone special comes along to the Preakness, which I doubt Lookin At Lucky will be at, I don't see Super Saver not winning it easily.  It's his race to lose.  I think he will be able to handle the mile & a half at the Belmont, but I am not sure he'll win that.  It'd be fantastic for the public if he pulled off a win in both Preakness & Belmon, it would do so much good and draw new fans.

BTW, was anyone else annoyed at the Bravo show for Kentucky Oaks?  My husband & I turned it off until 4:30 when they finally started talking about the horses.  Plus, the announcer asked how jockeys pick what they are going to wear in a race.  Come on, no one can be that dense, can they???

02 May 2010 11:59 PM

Ted-agree.  Sounds like a grocery store.  Should have been Supermon.  So obvious.  

03 May 2010 12:00 AM


I wish we would see that million dollar smile more often from Todd Pletcher. He is so serious most of the time. I guess if you have that many horses, employees and owners to worry about there's little time left for anything else. What an amazingly stoic man! The emotion was there, I'm sure, but he wasn't about to display it for the world to see. You said: "There was too much relief yesterday to feel joy." I think you nailed it on the head with that comment.

In fact, I think this blog was one of your best. Your description of Calvin, Todd and the WinStar people was right on. Kudos for a very well written article! I was waiting to hear from you, I wasn't disappointed, far from it!  :)  

03 May 2010 12:18 AM

I wanted Devil May Care to didn't really matter who won it this year because I figured every horse had a good shot at winning because of the sloppy track! I am not a huge fan of Pletcher, but I'm glad he finally got his Derby win! Now he's 1 for 28! LOL. Good race. I don't think we'll have a TC winner, but oh well. I think we should go back to the way it was before, you know, when you were only allowed to enter the Preakness and Belmont if you were good enough to make it to the KY Derby. I also believe 20 horses is WAY too many!

03 May 2010 12:20 AM

Super Saver has as much a shot at the Triple Crown as any horse in recent times.  I just don't think that horses are trained now to run back in such short time like the Preakness is in a mere two weeks so I doubt we will see a Triple Crown again unless they are a super horse and not just a Super Saver.  Could not resist that!

Happy for Pletcher and  hope Borel gets to ride for him more now.  I would like to see Borel tell Jackson to stuff it.

03 May 2010 12:37 AM
Matthew W

Todd Pletcher is one of the good guys in the game, as is Calvin Borel--what a character is Calvin, a cross between Barney Fife and Yogi Berra! A money jock! I mean, he's riding in the Apple Blossom and before the race, he says "I hope Zenyatta wins..."...anyone else and the stewards are giving him a call--but that's Calvin, what you see is what he is, a genuine character!....I've also heard a lot of excuses about other horses, but Super Saver was fairly close to a 46 flat half...they came home in :54, so I'm not sure if they were really closing or the leaders were tiring--methinks the best horse won the Derby! He ran much faster early--then held sway through the stretch....

03 May 2010 12:37 AM

I'm from the west coast so I don't really know much how Todd is like in person but all that personal stuff aside, I do believe he's one of the best trainers out there if not the best.  The only knock I have about Todd is when he runs in CA and I bet his horse, I always lose lol or vice versa (I don't bet his horse and he wins.)  

On to the Preakness, at this time, I don't think SS can win the triple crown.  As I mentioned in my previous posts, there'll be fresh horses coming in to the Preakness, and hopefully LAL will have Mike Smith riding him (his riding style will suit LAL's running style). took Todd  so many years to win his first derby, the same with Winstar, if the racing gods do some weird things, they might just give it to Todd and Winstar.  Triple Crown is not easy but SS does have good tactical speed that Borel figured out from the Arkansas Derby, and he's got the breeding to get the Belmont distance...will we see a TC winner this year ??  Maybe...we're due for a TC winner, the long drought might be over and it will really really be good for the horse racing industry.  Is SS deserving of a TC win, I say yes, as well as the trainer, owner and specially the jockey.  I for one will root for SS if he wins the 2nd leg of the TC to win it all the way.  It would be really great to finally see a TC winner in my generation.

And I can't blog without commenting on Draynay, I for one don't believe that he bet on BoRAIL, from his "handicapping" posts, he never once commented on Borel or any jockey for that matter then Borel wins and he posts comment that that's how you win the Derby every year ???  LOL.  I think he actually bet all his money on NP, and everyone around him bet on Borel, then told everyone that they're crazy for not betting NP....then after the race, they bought him a beer as a consolation for not hitting anything...well okay, maybe they bought him 2 beers and a shot of something.

03 May 2010 12:59 AM

Paula Higgins : IceBox might not run in the Preakness which I'm really disappointed cause now I have to pick a different horse to play with SS and LAL.  If Make Music For Me runs, I will again put him on my top 3 horses but most likely, he'll wait for the Belmont just like IceBox.  The other horse I like is Dublin, I think he will be the dark horse in the 2nd leg of the TC.

Jason : One small request, can you start a blog for the Zenyatta, RA debaters ?  You can call it "Here, babble your Z / RA arguments here and stop filling up my other blogs..."  You don't even have to comment on it as I'm sure you're probably tired of hearing the arguments but at least we'll have something to blog on to about how great Zenyatta is and how RA will never win a race again :)

03 May 2010 1:12 AM

I hope they change SUPER SAVER's name -- it sounds like a kid's savings account, or a BARGAIN item in a grocery, or a BUDGET meal at


heehee.  I wouldn't blame anybody for not betting on him.  Maybe change his name to SUPER MARIA, or SUPER MON, or SUPER MM.  Honestly, the name SUPER SAVER sounds like... CHEAP.  Honestly.

SS did great at the Derby, though.. Congrats to Borel and Todd. 

03 May 2010 3:24 AM

Can't stand the name "Super Saver," it just doesn't sound like a classy Derby winner.

03 May 2010 3:51 AM
Jason Shandler

Thanks for telling me Im the media Tim. I wasnt aware.

You went on and on about nothing. The original point was you questioning Todd as a strong communicator. You were wrong.

03 May 2010 4:01 AM

One thing which has impressed me about the riding skills of Calvin Borel is that he positions his horses so they do not have to fight internal duels.  By doing so, he keeps their energy level contained for the needed run to the wire.  Too many jocks lose races because of their horses having to fight off other horses in the backstretch.  Just to mention three rides of his.  He did use the rail each time.  But, with MTB, he stayed far back and made his run.  With Atta Boy Roy, he took the horse's natural speed and went, immediately, to the lead.  With Super Saver, he used his tactical speed to gain position off the pace.  However, in each of these, he never had to fight off other horses during the early and mid stages of the race.  Even his runs to the wire were free wheeling.  To merely call him a rail rider belies his intelligence.  He is a hard boot who can decipher the running styles of his mounts.  He is a Horseman.

03 May 2010 5:19 AM

Simply put,I'm happy for all the connections.

03 May 2010 6:29 AM


First question is what the heck are you doing up at 4:00 am? Really glad to see you talk about the people at Winstar. Class all the way.

Dr. Drunkinbum,

 Was your problem with xpressbet or someone else? I heard twinspires also crashed.

03 May 2010 7:21 AM

TVnewsbadge, and get your hats.... laughing all the way to the bank!  

03 May 2010 7:21 AM
Don from Delaware

I totally agree with Paula's comment regarding "Ice Box"...I want to read more about his super performance in this race, he must have run so much more distance and just review his closing run on the worst part of the track and passing everyone like they were standing still! Great and very luck ride for Calvin again, the Gods were with him again, but not so sure this will be a repeat winner with the competition coming. If "Ice Box" is healthy I hope he either waits for Belmont or if in Preakness and out this is a class horse...other than the Big "E" is the, in my view at this time, the "key horse" As for Todd...happy for him, but let us move on now and look ahead. Don

03 May 2010 7:46 AM

Congratulations to all the winners. Although SS was not my pick. The jockeys are going to have to figure a way to stop Calvin at the rail. Maybe they ALL should ride the rail? Anyways, the only problem I have with Calvin, is the fact he has to cry. It was ok last yr. But this year, it was, here we go again. Sorry people, I'm one of these women you just cant stand to see a man bawl like a baby. Soft happy tears-ok. But please, no bawling

03 May 2010 8:08 AM

I love the combo of Todd an Calvin, now Calvin can really show his stuff, I think thats what Calvin has been lacking, getting the good stock! I think the best horse an jockey won the Derby, I hope the go all the way !

03 May 2010 8:10 AM

I have the utmost respect for Pletcher, and I'm happy he's finally done it.  Also happy for the man who got to put $100,000 on a winner...finally.

Rechelle...for once I agree with you.  Too many pseudo-celebrity interviews on Bravo....but on NBC too.  Remember when they used to do in-depth interviews and great films about the racing industry.  It's all been traded for talking smack with "pseudos" who are just going to an "event" but who don't know the difference between a horse an a cow.  A lot of the general audience are actually older and still remember the 70's and 3 Triple Crown winners...would have been nice if they mentioned that Saturday's winners were their grandsons.  Instead we have a bored housewife commenting on fashion...or an announcer who's dowdy outfit was chosen by some designer who hosts a Bravo show.

03 May 2010 8:13 AM
mr pibb

Here ya go, toss em out for the win:


Dean's Kitten

Discretly Mine


Line Of David

Paddy O'Prado

Stately Victor



American Lion

Awesome Act

Mission Impazzible

me pibb 23 Apr 2010 8:14 AM

It's called the Draynay curse folks.

I see he's got his pick down to two and since he likes Noble's Promise as his #1 he's a nay nay "lock" to falter.

mr pibb 25 Apr 2010 9:15 PM

First I gave you 11 to eliminate, then I gave you NP to make it 12. When the posts were drawn LAL and Sidney's candy were automatically eliminated ( although Sidney's Candy did prove that it's not that hard to get a good trip from the 20 hole and if it was 2 years ago

and he had been facing the weak competition big brown did would have won with ease). That left 6. When Jackson Bend, Backtalk, and Make Music For Me made the field they were automatic tosses to win for anyone who knows how to handicap.

That left 3. Devil May Care on final analysis wasn't a good enough finisher. That left 2 and where did they finish? 1st and second. Super Saver and Ice Box.  

The Pibb rules!!!! I made a killing on the Derby. Hitting the .50 pick 4 for 18,438!!!, the trifecta using my top 2 over top 5, over top 5 5 times which cost me $120 and returned 5,843.50!!!, and the exacta using my top 2 over top 5 at $20 a pop that cost $160 and returned another $1524!!!

Read this quote from the nay nay:

On a dry track I believe these are your top horses. Noble's Promise and LAL Awesome Act, Endorsement, Devil May Care, and Dublin.  A wet track only changes the bottom 4.

draynay 26 Apr 2010 7:35 PM

Where did these guys finish? NONE, NADA, EL ZIPPO in the top 4 and he touted 25% of the Field!! You spend too much time listening to the nay nay who needs to learn how to bet. Even though he had 100 on Super Saver to win he doesn't have the belief in his ability and isn't a good enough handicapper to confidently play his 100 bucks in the exotic pools where the real money is.

Congratulations to Todd Pletcher who the naysayer has railed on against as never going to train a Derby winner. Congrats to Calvin Borel who is just awesome in the Derby and gave me 2 of the 4 in my pick 4.  

03 May 2010 8:17 AM

I think this year's Kentucky Derby was a reminder to all that weight difference does matter.

Super Saver lost his 2 preps because he was conceding weight. His numbers on my calculation were always best.Yet it is amazing he was 35-1 on the last Future pool but started as second favorite.

If he is drawn inside, I do not think the Preakness will be much of a race. Remember he has only run three times this year. He is an improving horse who stalked a brutal pace then blew clear.

Congrats to my man Pletcher.Congrats to Borel also, but I think the horse won on its own merits.

And yes. I am now convinced that Lookin At Lucky is a miler. True he had a rough trip but Gomez said the horse had nothing left in the final furlong.

03 May 2010 8:18 AM

As I've said before, congrats to all the winning connections. My son, who is serving in Iraq, wanted to know who won the Derby. I told him SUPER SAVER. His comment was: "Mom, his name sounds like a daily lunch special at K-Mart."lol. Thought I would share. :)

03 May 2010 8:21 AM
box it up

i played ice box to win only and had the first 3 in the super but didn't hit the triple. Typical horseplayer. I needed, american lion, sidneys candy or jackson bend for 4th. Had the race figured pretty good but only losing tickets. The way I played the super was I had to have both ice box & super saver in the top 4 and any 2 of paddy, american, sidneys or jackson in the other 2 spots. I think its the best way to play the supers. the cost for that bet is $144. I only suggest it for large fields like the derby due to the large payoffs. I am happy that Todd finally won a derby. Preakness time. My initial gut feeling is lookin at lucky.

03 May 2010 8:54 AM

Jayjay I made it perfectly clear to everyone I have talked to including Jason on this blog.  I learned my lesson last year and Borel will NEVER run a Derby that I don't have 100 on his head to win. I boxed 6 horses for the Tri and Keyed Noble in some tickets as well. I posted it April 29th at 7:43pm. on this blog the only thing I changed is I swapped Dublin for Awesome Act because Jason correctly said he looked very tired.  Lazmannick how do you like LAL now ?  I hope you noticed he finished BEHIND NOBLE !!! What about the Jackson Bend fans ? The American Lion fans ? What about the Sidney's Candy fans ? Paddy and Ice Box were clear choices and Super Saver had Borel.  Lal, Noble, and Devil did not hit the ticket but having all 6 finish in the top 10 is pretty good. I just wish Noble held on for 4th.  Jason could you please ask McPeek tomorrow if he is going to the Preak ?  By the way did you see their slogan "Get your Preak on" Who thought of that ?

03 May 2010 9:26 AM

Desormeaoux with, yet, another horrible ride on Paddy O Prado. If I were the connections he would be off the horse..

Desormeaoux spanked POP outside the eighth pole and he spurted. He then looked back, saw nothing coming, went to a hand ride and started fooling with his goggles then took a peak back, saw IB and tried a more aggressive hand ride. By then Ice Box had all the momentum and nailed him. After the wire Paddy galloped out the best of the three. Desormeaoux then tells the media he thought he should have won the race that he was stopped at the quarter pole. I thought the chart caller's comment that POP hung was a joke. He was fooling around the last eighth, even switched leads with 60 yards left. He was subjected to a dumb ride by Kent the last eighth mile. That's why Kent had to leave SoCal. Trainers and owners got sick of his poor judgement..

Had Desormeaoux used the whip and rode aggressively the last eighth, POP would have easily held off IB. Not taking away anything from IB. He had his share of troubles but no way with a jock riding hard the last eighth does POP get beat for second.

03 May 2010 9:44 AM

Congrats to Mr. Pletcher and even more to Calvin Borel!! What an accomplishment riding 3 of the last 4 Derby winners!!

For those of you who worry Calvin will take the blame for RA's loss Friday remember this, If you can't win at Churchill with Calvin aboard you just aren't good enough. RA is facing better than she faced last year and has now proven she is not a superhorse like some believed. She still is a very talented runner but has no business being mentiioned as one of the greatest Fillies/Mares ever. She had one great year beating some so-so G1 animals. The other 2 years she has raced she's been beaten over and over. One year where they ducked the top competition doesn't make her a superhorse. The many many losses prove that.

03 May 2010 9:51 AM
weighin' in

I don't think Super Saver is such a bad name.  Mr. Pletcher may think the same since this is the horse who saved his resume from that empty spot.  And he is Super.  Stop making so much about the name, and stop sounding like a bunch of 13 year old girls with the needing a pretty name stuff.  Sounds like you have one too many unicorn posters on your bedroom wall.

03 May 2010 9:58 AM

Congrats to all involved in SS win.No wonder I love this game so much.I hope a Marias Mon wins the TC.The Bravo coverage on Sat. was discusting until 4:30.C'mon I am all for the ladies in pink but lets not over do it and get a new clown on the mike.

03 May 2010 10:00 AM
El Kabong

The important communication going on right now is between Calvin and Super Saver. Calvin is at a point where he can ask that horse to do anything he wants. Accelerate, relax, accelerate, hell he could probably get him to skip rope right now. That, and the fact that this horse was trained to peak on Derby Day and not in one of the Preps is what makes this horse a possibility to get the TC. My guess is Calvin will rate him again and move him again in the turn, especially if some speed shows up, if not he'll take the lead. In the Belmont, I can see this horse going wire to wire, dictating the pace and stretching out in the turn. Ice Box looms as the big threat. His Derby run was filled with road blocks and when he did get a lane, it was explosive. Don't think he will show up for Preakness, but he is a lock for Belmont, and Zito's wreaking yard of TC hopes and dreams.

Looking back on the Derby film, I find it hard to understand why Gomez did not follow SS up the rail. He got jostled a bit but then the rail opened. He hesitated and thats when Desormeaux on Paddy decided to push Stately Victor into Lucky, who then had to pull up. Desormeaux's aggressive ride, and Go Go's passive ride is what got Lucky in trouble. None of us are to good that we can't be taught a lesson and I hope Go Go takes a long look at that move he didn't make and the one Kent Did. It was a move that separated their fates of 3rd and 6th. Go watch it again and tell me what you think.

Great Derby race to watch  thank god we didn't get that "impossible result here" of last year. I hope the competition is full and ready to run in Maryland.

03 May 2010 10:12 AM

Great Derby as always!! My

$3 Trifecta and multiple (9 times)Exactasmade it a nice day indeed!!

03 May 2010 10:21 AM

Congratulations are in line for Borel and Pletcher for the win. But make no mistake about it; Ice Box was by far the best horse in the race. He was steadied at least three times and at the top of the stretch he was literally stopped. Lezcano had to tap on the breaks and rerally from the center of the track. If he had found the space at that moment, Pletcher would have still be looking for a Derby win. But that was last Saturday, let's talk about the Preakness. I agree with Zito on training Ice Box up to the Belmont, on which he will probably be the horse to beat. Of the new faces that will probably go to the Preakness, Pleasant Prince will be an interesting proposition, as the second place by Ice Box does nothing but flatters him for this race. It will be interesting to see if Machowsky sticks with Atkinson for the Preakness on Caracortado. Jockeys should be calling in at the moment for that mount. Will Rule run in Maryland? Still twelve days to go, hang on to your chairs.

03 May 2010 10:21 AM
Diane J

I agree about the Oaks coverage - how awful was that?  Also, on NBC's Derby coverage, I don't think I saw a horse on the coverage until at least 30 minutes into it.  What was the deal with the cooking show??  Luckily the race was great, as always!

03 May 2010 10:31 AM

Very happy for Calvin; I don't think they come much "realer" than him.  Had a Pool 1 Futures Bet on SS so that was nice.  Really wanted Sidneys Candy to win; I'm about to give up on Cal. horses.

I don't think SS will win the TC though.  You really need to be a freak to do that these days.  Too much speed is bred into these horses these days.  

Regarding the name: yeah, its kinda lame, but I can just imagine young kids shouting "Superrrr Saverrrrr!" as they run around playgrounds (I don't think they would even attempt "Eskendereya")

03 May 2010 10:32 AM
Dreamer's Mom

O.K. all-Super Saver really is a grocery store!  That was my handicapping strategy this year and it paid off-love the store, got to go with the horse!  

I'm not a big Pletcher fan-actually not a fan of any of the trainers with over 100 horses.  Sorry, you aren't training them, your "help" is training them.  

I am, however, a big fan of Calvin Borel.  Love to see someone ride with such joy and appreciation for the good things.  I will probably never win the Derby, but if I ever do I will have the same ear-to-ear grin Mr. Borel sports! Well, not quite the same, but you know what I mean!  Love Bo-rail!

03 May 2010 10:33 AM
Tim G

Jason that wasn't my point at all. I read your article as saying how different the two men are, correct? Their OUTWARD appearance?

Well to the person who is a casual observer the outward appearance shows Calvin as ebullient and effervescent, talkative. Maybe not articulate or a master communicator in the sense you were speaking about, I'm not sure. But he's talkative and that's what the public sees. They don't see the behind the scenes Todd, which is too bad because he's a really nice guy. But to the casual fan he comes across as serious, a man of few words and very focused. THAT’S what I’ve heard from several people who aren’t big time race fans. Zookeeper hit it on the head, he comes across as stoic. My comment trying to look at it from an outward appearance.  People determine outward appearances from what they observe or from what they hear from the person under observation.

On the comment about the media?  ………..

“Who cares what he says to the media Tim?”  I didn’t understand that comment coming from someone in the media who probably would have no contact with the gentleman otherwise.

Draynay, what don't you understand about it? That was my point. I've seen Calvin in every Derby, re-watched on recordings.

It's worked for him in the Derby, didn't work in a couple other races this weekend. But the jocks can either watch him do it and say he's going to win it or ride for their lives like he does.

03 May 2010 10:39 AM

An unimpressive horse but an amazing ride and a great "event"--Pletcher finally got his Derby. Another one to remember. I thought my pick to win, Paddy O'Prado, was excellent and will do well at the shorter distance of the Preakness. He tried real hard at the end but just couldn't take that final bit of surprise pressure from Ice Box (my pick for place!)

03 May 2010 10:48 AM
matt h


03 May 2010 11:01 AM

Hurray for Tod Pletcher & Calvin Borel!  I'm happy for both of them and all the connections.  It's nice to have a combination of people you can really root for. Not sure what the next few weeks will bring but would love to see a Triple Crown!  (I agree with the other poster who said he/she wished Calvin would quit with the "guarantees" -- bad karma!!)

I don't want to come off as mean or petty but I'm glad it was Pletcher, Borel & WinStar that are the winners... folks like Big Brown's connections (all of 'em) made it extremely difficult to pull for the horse. In retrospect, I'm glad BB didn't win the Belmont 'caus we'd have that crew still strutting around in their arrogance!!  And as a confirmed Rachel lover, it's so irritating to watch/listen to Jess Jackson and all his malarkey.  

I think Ice Box is a serious threat in the Belmont and as somebody else said, Zito is a master of having a horse ready for that race.

I also want to agree with the comments about how ridiculous (and insulting to the true racing fan) that Bravo's coverage of the Oaks was.  JUST AWFUL. Who hired that nit-wit commentator??? WHY are the housewives of any town worth watching??? And how does being able to afford a snazzy outfit qualify any of them to earn a spot on a program that should be showcasing the best of female athletes????   Makes me sick!!! Thank God that Blind Luck ran her race, showed her talent and wiped away the prior images of that telecast.  I hope the program next year is thought out more carefully.

In closing... Congrats to all of Super Saver's connections... what a race!

03 May 2010 11:09 AM


If I've learned ANYTHING from this Derby, it is that the name of a horse has NO bearing on his running ability. The less than regally named horses, Super Saver & Ice Box, ran better than the rest of them. The aversion I had for "bad names" has (hopefully) been cured forever! lol!

03 May 2010 11:12 AM

Pasturelands wrote "I hope they change SUPER SAVER's name -- it sounds like a kid's savings account, or a BARGAIN item in a grocery, or a BUDGET meal at Wendy's."

At this point, once they are registered with the Jockey Club, they can not have a name change.  I actually like it and I'm sure he has a different barn name like most horses do.  My mare was officially named Go Litely with the American Warmblood Association but her barn name was Baylee because of her coloring.  

03 May 2010 11:15 AM

The best horse won the Derby - period! SUPER SAVER and CALVIN BOREL will have the other horses eat their dust while both will try to make history to sweep the Triple Crown series!

Go SS and CB!!!

03 May 2010 11:16 AM
draynays better half

Thank god the Derby is over for another year. I can only take so much of the drama from my man. One day he's all over a horse then the next day that horse is garbage and another one is his pick. This year it was even worse with Rachael Alexandra continuing her losing streak just the day before the Derby. As soon as RA crossed the finish line a loser once again he started in on the Zenyatta stinks routine. Then comes the Derby and his beloved pick Nobles Promise. I wish he was a man of his word and just sucked it up and had worn the pink dress, hat, and bow he promised all of you he would. Draynay hasn't picked a Derby winner in his life that wasn't the race time favorite and shared that choice with millions of others. He fancies himself such a handicapper and can't face reality that he's wrong well over 95% of the time with his pick no matter what the race. I don't know how you all handle his garbage. I'm attached to him at the hip so I have no choice being a woman of my word. I will back him till the day I die but at the same time i see him for what he is, a terrible handicapper. Take care peeps.

Peace out    

03 May 2010 11:19 AM

One other thing: The reason I think that we haven't had a triple crown winner since Affirmed is because of how these horses are bred.  They are not bred for a race in 2 weeks, nor are they bred for one in 3 weeks.  As long as these races are being held that close together, we may not see one.  BUT, I do think that we have a good chance with Super Saver.  Ice Box was not closing in on SS and I don't believe he would've caught up.  At this point, they aren't even sure if Ice Box will be at the Preakness & I highly doubt that Lookin At Lucky will be in any of two remaining races, not when he ran so poorly.  I never thought that Devil May Care had a chance in the Derby and I suspect she will go back to fillies.  You can't duplicate what RA did last seaon, nor can you duplicate what Rags to Riches did in the Belmont.  Those were 2 great fillies for their age, although RTR got injured in her next race and never returned to the track.  

I hope we do get a Triple Crown winner this year, it would mean so much to Pletcher and would boost the popularity of horse racing.  

03 May 2010 11:21 AM
Karen in Texas

Pletcher and Borel do seem to be an odd couple, but if CB relates well to the horse, then that's what counts. Hopefully that relationship will translate effectively to future tracks and distances!

Yes, Rechelle, I was also annoyed at Bravo for being obtuse, but not as much as last year--maybe because it was almost expected this time?

About the Super Saver hats--wasn't Elliot Walden wearing one when he was being interviewed about Endorsement's pre-Derby problems?

03 May 2010 11:46 AM
Pam S.

I agree with Jodie, SS has as much chance as any recent Derby winner to win the TC.  That may not be a whole lot, though; it seems the fresh horses in the Belmont are the killer these days.  I do think he can win the Preakness.

I never liked his name either, but it has grown on me a bit.  

What can you say about Todd and Calvin?  They could be the stars of an Odd Couple-type TV show with a racing theme.  Jack Klugman would have to consult, of course.  I predict Todd will have more Derby wins, and Calvin will too, 'cause he'll be on a live horse every year from now until he retires.

03 May 2010 11:49 AM

Tim--I'm with you. Racing's a business and anything a classy man like Pletcher can do to promote it, helps all of us in the long run. With fame comes responsibilities. He's only on TV a few minutes a year--it would be great if he could channel a little of Calvin's exuberence and promote his industry. The more forthcoming someone as experienced as him can be to represent the industry and educate the potential fan, the better for all of us.

03 May 2010 11:51 AM


You are right on about omitting Calvin at your own risk. While I foolishly bet "Lucky" to win, I did have the smarts to include Super Saver and Ice Box in my exacta boxes.

Just a thought on the Preakness: I hope Ice Box runs back in it. While the Belmont is the longer race, I believe that a fast paced Preakness would give him a better chance to win. Despite what many may think intuitively, the Belmont has not favored the stone closers over the years.

03 May 2010 11:57 AM

Yippe for our homeboy Cal.

As to the colt's name, well, I just had to laugh because I'm a big fan of Joan Hess' Maggody series and Jim Bob's Super Saver Buy4Less is always a hoot.

I've liked Ice Box since the Le Compte and I am not discouraged given the dreadful trip he had - I mean checked that hard at the quarter pole and still flying at the end. Whew.

03 May 2010 11:59 AM

We it seems we learned a lot from 136.

(1).  Lucky looks like a 1 run pony.

(2).  We should have listened to Baffert on drawing post 1.

     (A).  We need to break well

     (B).  We are screwed.

Lucky was 20 lengths out at one call.

(2).  Sidney broke well, got over, but could not handle being 2 off off a 46 pace.  

(3).  Dosage index and pedigree/turf horses (synthetics) came into play.  What was Padio's dosage?  Like 1.31 or something.  I had a big "Turf horse" across the form.  But you knew he could run far.  Belmont?

(4).  Super Saver was one of the few speed horse who had the pedigree to get the distance (saw some A.P Indy in there).  The other speed (Conveyance, Line of David) want 7 furlongs to a mile. These types often win the Belmont.  Speed over a distance of ground.  

(5).  Cuvee couldn't carry Noble's Promise beyond a mile.

(6).  It takes an exceptional filly to win the Kentucy Derby.  

(7).  The last decade produced a lot of winners from either the Moring Line favorite or second choice.  Giacomo and Mine that Bird were not the norm.

(8).  Super Saver, Ice Box, and Padio Furniture all sound like a bad saturday shopping outing.  

03 May 2010 12:05 PM


This is a very good column.  Keep up the good work Bro.


I agree with you that Super Saver has the potential to grind out a Triple Crown sweep. Like many others suggested, his name fits the economic climate that is prevailing right now and as a headliner SUPER SAVER would be a sublime message to the world in these tough global economic times.  This colt is just peaking right now, is bred to go all the way to the Belmont Stakes and has the tactical speed and relentless pace to get the job done, blue collar style (unlike the flamboyant manner in which Eskendereya would have done it).  He was much the best in the Derby and is capable of taking on all comers in the Preakness.  His biggest dangers could come from his stablemates Mission Impazible (if he returns in the Preakness) and Devil May Care (if she returns in the Belmont).  IMHO Ice Box is a bigger threat in the Preakness than the Belmont Stakes(not ideal for out and out closers), unless Nick Zito skips the Preakness and gets Edgar Prado to partner him on "Big Sandy" in New York.

03 May 2010 12:07 PM

The names Super Mon or Supermon are not available.  You can check the availability of thoroughbred names at

03 May 2010 12:11 PM
steve from st louis

Let's revisit the annual Draynay to do list: (a) Look pretty in pink as I denigrate unbeaten Zenyatta for....whatever reason----uh-oh, 16 times wrong and "too busy" to stand up like a man.

Elevate Rachel Alexandra as greatest filly of all time, finding fault with every other great distaffer who ever took a breath, including two undeafeated ones.---uh-oh, not looking good with Rachel an 0-for-2 in 2010 against less-than-stellar competition.

Denigrate Todd Pletcher for not knowing how to prepare a 3-year-old for the Derby--Really? He was a sure Hall of Famer before Saturday. Did all it take was naming Calvin on his horse? Why hasn't Calvin won more than three Derbies then? He obviously can carry any horse across the wire, right Dray?

Denigrate Secretariat for losing to Onion and Prove Out--uh, oh--I guess Dray won't be attending the "Secretariat" premiere in October since Hollywood often makes movies about horses, much less mediocre Triple Crown winners.

I would hold out, Dray, to play yourself when Hollywood rolls out the "Rachel Alexandra Story". You are perfectly cast as her rear end.

03 May 2010 12:15 PM
El Kabong

Name Super Saver stinks. Great Horse but yes, it has pained my ears since November. Great name for grocery outlet store or a goal keeper. I can't help but see those two words surrounded by a jagged burst, red and yellow block letters accompanied by the most insulting word in advertising......WOW! If they wanted to name this horse after a goalie, Monstah Save would have been better. Someone suggested Supermon--great idea. But, as long as he helps me cash, I can get used to the name. He's money no matter what you call him.  

03 May 2010 12:27 PM
Matthew W

Atta Boy Roy!!! NEVER underestimate a Washington sprinter! In the slop? Hey, slop is common in Seattle! With Borel up? That's like stealing!

03 May 2010 12:28 PM
Bob D.

I agree with Dr. Drunkinbum, Calvin needs to learn to stop making predictions.

Let's see - 2007 just before the Preakness "There's no way this horse can lose" - strike one.

2009 going for the Jockey Triple Crown at Belmont "I guarantee we'll win this race" - strike two

2010 right after the race "I'm going to win the Triple Crown"

What's that they say about those who don't learn from history?  

Look out for Nick Zito & Ice Box in the Belmont.......

03 May 2010 12:28 PM
Jason Shandler

longway: Derby week wore me down. Sick as a dog and couldnt sleep last night. Thanks for your concern though :)

03 May 2010 12:32 PM
Virgil Fox

Super Saver - that was me on Derby Day - too cheap to hit the "ALL" button for the 4th spot in my SUPERfecta.

No big deal.  It was only 202K, right?   :(

03 May 2010 12:34 PM
El Kabong

Matthew W,

That was too much fun on Atta Boy Roy. I was really surprised his odds dropped so much, considering "on paper he looked like he didn't belong"....Jerry Bailey

Just curious, are you familiar with Quartershoot Cafe, or in other words, are you an Emerald Rail Rat?

03 May 2010 12:40 PM
Matthew W

Draynay you're so right--Borel pays! All day long, on big days, Borel pays! As far as I'm concerned, if SS comes out ok, he's the Preakness horse to beat! Yes the closers were closing--or WERE they? I mean, a :54 last half, maybe it only looked like they were closing! Super Saver, and, yes, Noble's Promise, were the only two horses near the pace who stayed on...The Preakness will be won by a stalker/near the pace type--SS...Noble's...or even Caracortado, who worked lights out over the weekend....

03 May 2010 12:45 PM
Al Bihno

Super Saver is the second coming of Monarchos, only a vastly slower version.

If Angel Cordero were still riding, Borel would be launched into the infield the second time he tried to beat Angel from the rail.

03 May 2010 12:46 PM
Jet Deck

yes, rechelle, bravo coverage is lame.  definitely got sick of the media asking the o fer question to TP.  getting all the horses there in the last ten years has been phenomenal.  and the horse borel will ride has to be the early favorite for next year's derby.  when is the last time that has ever beeen the case?  

03 May 2010 12:47 PM
Matthew W

El Kabong: No--never been to Emerald, but I'll bet you can get a good microbrew up there! No, but I've been to Longacres! And I remember Grey Papa, Trooper Seven, Edneator and the great Chinook Pass! You just cannot underestimate them, and with Calvin up, and in the slop--there were lots of things to like about that....  

03 May 2010 12:49 PM
Matthew W

Watch out for Alphies Bet in the Belmont.....

03 May 2010 12:51 PM

steve before you go on ask Todd Pletcher who he credits for his Derby win himself or Borel ?  Borel over the last few years has figured out the formula.  Watch how he rushes SS out to the rail and notice how the Derby may have been lost by Noble not tucking in right behind him.  The jockey urged Noble to pass him into the first turn running in the two hole when he just could have sat back and followed a jockey that won 2 of the last 3.  Big mistake and he paid for it the last 100 yards. Winning the Derby requires patience and knowing when to go.  Noble with Borel aboard wins that race.  Anyone who thinks Super Saver is a better horse then LAL or Noble will get a surprise for sure at the Preakness.  Borel won last year on a super horse.  Super Saver is no Super horse.

03 May 2010 12:53 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


  Twinspires but I'm not going to bash them. They've been good to me and is by far the most user friendly site, and has free pps even if you just make a $2 bet. It's just the nature of The Derby Beast. You need to get your bets in early and forget about it. My biggest problem is the NBC monopoly. You can't even watch the horses pre-race or the race online and their telecast is a nightmare. Luckily Bravo didn't have a monopoly so I could enjoy Oaks Day. No way I'm watching all of those ridiculous interviews. I stopped watching NBC too. They have no idea how to present a horse race. I now believe that the Preps for The Derby are better than the Derby for me. I will have a lot less focus on The Derby and more on The Preps from now on. Looking forward to great races in The Preakness and The Belmont. At least with those races owners and trainers aren't entering garbage horses just to be in. It really does detract from the overall competiveness of The Derby. Don't hog up valuable real estate when you shouldn't be on the property.

03 May 2010 12:54 PM
Pedigree Shelly

       Congrats to Todd and to the connections of Super Saver ! Todd deserved the win ,he's a top class guy ! I really wished his filly DMC would have won instead ! Super Saver is a nice colt ,though I really dont see him as a TC winner but,you never know? Ice Box should point to the Belmont, he definately needs the added distance ! The Preakness is better suited to horses like LAL and Noble's Promise among others .

03 May 2010 12:55 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


 Get well soon !!!!!! Eat right, drink plenty of fluids and rest. And don't be so hard on The Beaver(Tim G). Don't eat all of the Hershey Kisses he's sent you until you feel better.

03 May 2010 12:57 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

It's so stupid that Borel lost The Derby in 2008. What happened? It doesn't make any sense. He came in 3rd with an out of the clouds rail ride but couldn't get there in time. Maybe he was sick that day or something. I don't get it. Borel is the man in The Derby. No one else is close but watch out for Rosario in the future. He'd be my jockey in The Derby if I couldn't get Borel. Or even Lezcano. What a ride that was on Ice Box. It really takes a certain cool and fortitude to be a great Derby jockey. Brave, trustworthy etc etc. Borel is one cool customer. CALVIN BOREL. He should have his own underwear line-"Calvin Borel Jockey Shorts. For the man that wants to feel cool, and on top of the world. You too can feel like a Derby winner."

03 May 2010 1:09 PM

Fabulously entertaining Derby. I submit that if Ice Box had not gotten totally shut off (had to all but stop stock-stead-still), he probably would have passed SS. But, he didn't and that's all part of the Derby. Luck plays a huge part - post position, jostling, cut-offs, poor/excellent rides... Congratulations to those who had excellent training, riding and luck on their side this time. There are so many times earlier that Pletcher might/should have won but didn't. This was his time.

As for Calvin...gotta love him. He's unique and excellent television - which equates to excellent for racing.

Two excellent days of racing for the world to see. If you could watch the races on Friday and Saturday and not be/become a fan of horse racing, you can't possibly have a soul or get excited about anything.

03 May 2010 1:18 PM

A friend of mine was in Vegas when the nay nay announced his pick of Noble's Promise to win the Derby. Apparently their was no reaction whatsoever. Personally my reaction was there he goes picking another loser. I saw it somewhere here a quote something to the effect that Nobles Promise couldn't outfinish a tumbleweed to the line with no wind blowing. Looking back that may have been stretching it slightly but in reality Nobles Promise went his last 1/4 mile in 27.95 seconds and that's barely crawling. I'm glad I tossed him and made some nice cash.

03 May 2010 1:21 PM

Super Server's Dam was Super Charger, hence the name Super Saver. Does not really flow and not the classiest name but no worse than Icebox or Big Brown to name a few.

03 May 2010 1:23 PM

Well it only took years of time and millions of others who already knew about Calvin Borel's propensity for winning at CD for the nay nay to get on the bandwagon. Welcome aboard even though you are lightyears late  this time nay nay. Don't even try to convince people you came up with this one.

By the way what happened to your top pick Noble's Promise? Wasn't that him screaming for the inhaler at about the mile pole? How anyone could not see that he had no chance of getting the distance is unreal.

03 May 2010 1:31 PM

LOL, I find it hilarious that people are actually commenting about the name of the horse!  I mean seriously, what's the name got to do with anything ?  I'm sitting here thinking how great a TC winner would be and people are complaining how the name sounds "cheap."

03 May 2010 1:36 PM

The Wiz does it again. my top 5 were Super Saver, Ice Box, Paddy's O'Prado, LAL, and Sidney's Candy. Outside of Dublin and Discretly Mine they were the only who met my criteria for the win. Dublin and Discretly Mine were complete throwouts for even a novice handicapper. After the post draw it left only 3 and you can guess where that led me. Ka-Ching!!!!!!!!! My system rules!!

03 May 2010 1:36 PM

If "Draynay's better half" is really Draynay's better half, I find her last post to be hilarious.

03 May 2010 1:41 PM
Monica V

I'm so pleased for Mr. Plether ang thrilled for Calvin.  One thing I really don't understand is the need to bash Rachel on a Derby blog.  She faced all weak horses last year?  Why does Calvin insist she's the best he ever rode?  Maybe he'll read this blog and find out from the "experts" how wrong he is.  

03 May 2010 1:47 PM

El Kabong:

Spot on critique of Gomez not following Calvin and Super Saver from the start.  I was going to write the same thing.  If I was Baffert, that would have been my instructions all along: Follow Borel!

Super Saver broke well and was in 2nd before Calvin realized he could let Conveyance go and settle into a stalking position on the rail.  Gomez could have had Lucky directly behind Calvin and just followed him along the hole at the top of the stretch and then around Conveynace.  As you mentioned, that's exactly what Kent did on Paddy.

Jersey Boy:

Of course Gomez is going to focus on Lucky getting tired late; he needed to deflect from his miserable ride.  Yes, Lucky did get tired.  But Lucky was never going to win coming from 19th.  Lucky is not a deep closer; he's a mid-pack/stalker.  He couldn't afford losing 6-8 lengths during that first half.  Throw in being bumped twice and having to weave through the stretch, and Lucky had every reason to be out of gas the last sixteenth.  

I never believed Lucky was a Belmont horse, but I think he can get 10 furlongs, especially against this moderate crop.

And while I think Gomez is a good jockey, there comes a point in which there must be consequences for his rides on Lucky.  As others have suggested, maybe it's as simple as Gomez not being a good fit for this particular horse.  

Also, I think there could be some validity in the speculation that it's just too much in Gomez's head now.  In the Derby Gomez appeared so scared of the rail, so scared of getting into trouble, that his timidity eneded up helping to create the very trouble he was seeking to avoid.  All Gomez would hear before the Preakness is the words "trouble", "bad trip", "again".  No offense to Gomez's abilities, but I think Baffert should make a switch in this particular case.


Excellent word for Super Saver's Triple Crown bid: Grinding.

I agree that Super Saver can grind his way through the Preakness and Belmont and make a legit run at the Triple Crown.  In the end, I don't think he stands out above this crop enough to pull it off, but I wouldn't be surprised if he's on the board in the next two legs.  Go For Gin, Thunder Gulch?

03 May 2010 1:52 PM

It was good seeing Sadler smiling in the winner's circle after his Cozie Rosie won the gr.3 Senorita yesterday at Hollywood Park.  The Derby was a cruel lesson for Sadler.  However, Saturday was not a complete waste for him because Monna de Moma did win the gr.1 Humana Distaff.

03 May 2010 1:54 PM

My thoughts exactly MW, one of Washington State's finest!  Calvin watched the rail evolve during the day, saw it improve, and did the experiment with Atta Boy Roy.  The Derby jocks should have seen him coming. . .

03 May 2010 1:59 PM

Nice article for equally nice connections.  I'm glad Todd's drought is over.  You have to respect a man who says (before the Derby), "What's the worst thing that can happen?  I'll be 0-30?" LOL.

I think Super Saver has a very real shot in the Preakness, but I don't see him winning the Belmont.  There have been better horses going into that race with the first 2 jewels in their pocket that faltered in New York.  

I know it's easy to assume horses like Ice Box and Setsuko have the best shot in the Belmont because of their deep closing style, but deep closers don't really fare that well in the Belmont.  You still have to have tactical speed and forwardly placed horses win more Belmonts than the deep closers do.

03 May 2010 2:21 PM


Couldn't agree more about Calvin. He keeps a horse in position to sustain his momentum, which is key. He is a true Horseman with a knack for getting to know his horse and how to get the most of them.


I think you are being unfair to Kent. He made a fantastic move at the start of the race that stole the rail from Gomez, putting Paddy behind Calvin and SS, who he followed throughout the race--very smart. He just had a little trouble, and I mean a little trouble running up on SS when Calvin who timed his move a second quicker got in the hole between Conveyance and Noble first before Kent could. I firmly believe Paddy did not have the gas to catch SS but Ice Box, who had 3 times as much traffic as Paddy had plenty of speed left. He was the only one gaining ground on SS that day. But Calvin looked back at the 4 lengths he had with 50 yards to go and he let up, as he often does, to save a horse when he's won the race. I think the connections on Paddy have to be very thankful they had Kent on their horse. Kent rode IMO, a very good race. Those Cajun jocks are the best in the Mud.

03 May 2010 2:22 PM
Tim G

Dr. Drunkinbum. My hunch is candy won't help what's ailing Jason.

I COULD send him something to cure what ails him. Part of your name is apropos for me. (a little hint, I don't drink).

Maybe I’m a little Derbied-out myself, don’t get your reference… Eddie………

03 May 2010 2:24 PM

At Hollywood Park yesterday I saw Burt Bacharach in the paddock before Race 6.  He owns Details R Sketchy.

It made me think about the many good horses he had in the early and mid 90s(he had good horses in the 80s but I was too young).  The 2 that stick out for me are Afternoon Deelites and Soul of the Matter.  

Afternoon Deelites won the gr.1 Hollywood Futurity like something very special and was undefeated before he lost the Santa Anita Derby by a nose in 95'.  10 furlongs would prove too far for Afternoon Deelites, although he did finish 2nd at that distance as a 4 year old in the gr.1 Strub.  Afternoon Deelites ultimately proved best as a miler, winning the gr.1 Malibu at 7 furlongs and running 2nd in the Met Mile.

Soul of the Matter was best at 10 furlongs, although he was known for his near misses.  Of course, his great run in the 96' Dubai World Cup, running 2nd to Cigar, made that race an instant Classic.  Soul of the Matter is also known for running 4th in two Breeders Cup Classics.  He also ran 5th in the 94' Kentucky Derby and 2nd in the 95' Pacific Classic.  However, he did win a gr.1, the 94' Super Derby.

Didn't most of Bacharach's horses stand stud in Penn, WV, or Maryland?

03 May 2010 2:25 PM

Also at Hollywood yesterday, after the Senorita Stakes I went into the gift store and looked around for a while.  Right as I was leaving, Jerry and Anne Moss walk in.  I was so taken aback, all I could do was congratulate them on their win with Cozie Rosie in the Senorita.  However, a few seconds later I wished I would have added the following 5 words:

Go to the Stephen Foster.

03 May 2010 2:29 PM

I correct myself, Calvin won the second race on the rail from the 3 spot . . . Business as usual.

03 May 2010 2:33 PM
El Kabong

Matthew W

Well said. Better mention Turbulator too or John White will have a cow.

Great Beer up here, much improved from those Longacres days and 10 times as good as the Coffee.

Valorie Lund commented about how ABR hated synthetic tracks and was twice the sprinter on dirt, as she feels most true sprinters are.


Thanks, glad you saw that too. I think Desormeaux's strategy all along was too follow Borel. He was willing to shove S Vic into Lucky to get the position. It worked, he just didn't have enough horse to get past Calvin.

03 May 2010 2:42 PM

Borel is still not my hero (runs bad and then hits horses wildly and even unnecessarily to compensate)...but the truth is, he has gone from local hero to living legend (like it or not).

Maria's Mon was soo overlooked, even after Monarchos. Now he's gone. Too bad; where are the great breeders gone? Or should I say, the brave breeders?

SS has enough speed for the Preakness and enough depth for the Belmont. Does he have the jockey for these races?

Where are the old-time jockeys? How can the same man, on one of the favourites, do it again on the rail? C'mon!

03 May 2010 2:43 PM
Tim G

Draynay, Calvin has to have the horse under him. After the AD he said his horse was really peaking.

If he gets the horse and the horse has the right style of running, he'll be hard to beat. But he'd look pretty funny out there riding a stick horse.

Those of us who have been around a while and Calvin himself will tell you he's ridden in relative obscurity for most of his career. His other Derby rides prior to 07 weren't that great.

03 May 2010 2:50 PM
Pedigree Shelly

         Alot of people including myself dont really care for the name Super Saver ! Ice Box isn't really that great of a name either,but he's my horse for the rest of the Classics !War Emblem was the perfect TC name ,but we all know he didn't make it. There are alot of bad names out there - Derby winner Lil E Tee ,the record breaking sales colt named " The Green Monkey " I could go on. These majestic animals deserve better names than the ones they're given :(

03 May 2010 2:55 PM

I am so happy for Winstar and Calvin Borel.  Winstar is a class act and I follow all of their horses.  I am also relieved for Todd Pletcher, I was so sick of the 0 for 24 stuff.  Maybe now Calvin will finally get some respect.  He should be the most sought after jockey for the Kentucky Derby and have his pick of horses - not Garrett Gomez.  Calvin is a horseman through and through and understands horses that is why he is so successful.  It seems like some trainers think he is a one-trick pony that just knows how to ride the rail.  That is not true at all.  Calvin puts his horse in the best spot to win the race period.  I have seen him win all over the track.  Calvin just understands that the shortest distance around the track gives the horse the best opportunity to win.  I also hope that Calvin is not taken off of Rachel Alexandra.          

03 May 2010 2:56 PM

The NTRA polls are out,  Super Saver heads the three year olds,  and Zenyatta heads the national polls...........RA falls from third place to sixth place........

03 May 2010 2:57 PM
Ted from LA

Patio Furniture?  What's Irish and stays out all night, Alex?

Dr. Drunkinbum, like Jason, I was so worn out from the Derby that I couldn't think of anything funny to say.  Like you, I have fond memories of June Cleaver telling Ward not to be so hard on The Beaver.  The greatest accidental double entendre in the history of television.  I imagine K-Mart and Wal-Mart leaders are in board rooms all across America trying to capitalize on this Derby winner as we speak.

03 May 2010 3:16 PM

Interesting story on the Atta Boy Roy article in BH about the trainer, Valorie Lund, asking the racing secretary at CD to recommend a rider.  He had to explain to her, why he thought CB would fit her horse.  He was so right, eh?  Kinda sad for the owners of his sire, Tribunal, who passed away at 11, last year.  He has produced the winning Tribal Belle, but, Atta Boy Roy is one the finest grand sons of Deputy Minister for pure sprinting.  But, Emerald Downs and the old Longacres have been notorious for knocking off California shippers who thought they would steal the purse for the Longacres Mile and ABR did beat the winner of that race in the earlier prep, the Governor's Handicap and he won the Chinook Pass in a very fast 1:07 flat.  Now, if only Crockett would put in a turf course, as so many Washington breds have turf breeding and they have to go to either the Bay or SoCal to run on sod.  But, torn emotions at Portland Meadows for that Atta Boy Roy race.  Vic Carlson was there and he is part owner of Musket Man.  More than one local punter tried to couple Atta Boy Roy with Musket Man in exactas, only to be split.  But, I still maintain Calvin Borel does not waste the energy of his mounts in internal duels, as do many of the "Name Jocks".

03 May 2010 3:18 PM


Open your eyes......The girls ran a quarter of a second faster and their eyeballs were dragging on the ground.  They were going ALL OUT.....Arson Squad won by more than two lengths and virtually had the race won at the 1/16th pole.  That's why you don't get it as a handicapper. You really don't know how to evaluate time in a race.

It's also interesting to note that four of those stellar G-1 horses your girl dusted last year finished in the last four spots in the Alysheba.  

LAZMANNICK 30 Apr 2010 11:16 PM

Amen LAZ. RA beat paper G1 Males only last year. Now they can't even win much less compete in a G3 race!! You could put a lineup of claimers in a G1 race and one of them has to win. That doesn't make the winner a true G1 caliber horse or the race a true G1 caliber race.

03 May 2010 3:35 PM

Anyone who thinks Super Saver is a better horse then LAL or Noble will get a surprise for sure at the Preakness.  Borel won last year on a super horse.  Super Saver is no Super horse.

draynay 03 May 2010 12:53 PM

A super horse doesn't get beat one of every three times they hit the track nay nay. RA has lost 5 of 16 races nearly that amount and all her losses came in less than G1 races. She had a good year facing so-so horses but she's never going to be a super horse with that kind of record. Ruffian is rolling over and over in her grave with laughter that anyone would mention RA is the same breath as her.

03 May 2010 3:44 PM

Sorry Draynot but I have been on the wagon since what's his name won the Derby last year.  I decided right then and there to bet 100 on him to win EVERY TIME he runs in the Derby no matter what. I got our whole table to do it and I even got them to play the Bo-rail game.  Like I said I will add Julian L. to the automatic pick in all my pick 3's next year because he burned me twice on Saturday or I would have really been rich by the end of the day. Noble ran a great race and ran better then a lot of horses with all that great breeding. I think the ride was more of a problem for him then the distance.

03 May 2010 3:45 PM
Tim G

Oh and by the way Dray? Ken says NP probably isn't going to the Preakness. Start lining up your picks now. You only have two weeks to name a cast of a thousand.

03 May 2010 3:47 PM
Sandra Warren

Charlie Whittingham won graded stakes all over the world and was recognized as one of the top, top trainers in the US, but he said that every where he went, even in Japan, people asked him how many Derbies he had won, and until Ferdinand, he always had to say, "None," and watch the disappointment on people's faces that they really hadn't met a great trainer.  Pletcher had shrugged off not winning many times, but I'll bet now that he could really validate what Charlie said.  Once you've won, it's a lot better than not having won!

03 May 2010 3:50 PM
Tim G

Yep Ted, and Eddie Drunkinbum Haskell is taking it especially hard that I don't think he's as funny as you, like I said he's trying too hard to be funny.

03 May 2010 3:54 PM

@GunBow, is that some stride on Cozy or what?  I thought the fav looked far better in both the post parade and going to the gate, but, Cozy put her away.

One thing about Afternoon Delites - I wonder how much his speed duel with Larry the Legend had on both of them in the SA Derby.  Gainesway, which stood the sire of LtL wanted Craig Lewis to bring him back to Keeneland and run in the Bluegrass.  Instead, he opted to stay home and run in the SA Derby.  They wore each other out.  LtL never made it to Gainesway as a stud and his daddy, Local Talent, was moved on.  LtL does not receive the best mares in CA, but, does produce some winners, especially, for Lewis.

03 May 2010 3:56 PM

Tim, your comments have gone from strange to just plain silly.  Borel through EXPERIENCE has learned how to win the Derby.  Do you see MTB winning anything since ?  I doubt if the horse will EVER win anything again.  Super Saver is better then LAL ?  You're out of your mind ! Borel out rode Gomez plain and simple.  I saw him do it Tim.  So did you!  He won the Derby last year with a joke of a horse.  Right then and there I said never again.  Borel at Pimlico has no advantage and at Belmont I wouldn't bet on him even if he was on Secretariat.  But at Churchill in the Derby he has it figured out.  May I remind you he hit the board on Denis of Cork.  Denis of Cork ! Geez.  What more do you need. One of his moves is to get the horse out as fast as possible and to the rail even faster.  Borel understands the first horse out and to the rail wins so he gets them out quick.  Watch the replay.

03 May 2010 3:58 PM

I had the misfortune of having to go to Tampa Bay Downs to bet the Derby. Fortunately my handicapping made it a great day at the windows. I thought my hometown track at Canterbury was small potatoes but this place made me very glad to have at least what we do here. Very few windows, a terrible location to get into and out of, concessions were horrible ( I didn't eat all day for fear of catching some disease), and I got to witness 2 fights between patrons for entertainment between races. Any Canterbury regulars out there, we have it much better than I thought. I've been to many a track across the country but not many smaller ones and ours shines well above the rest of the second tier tracks. Thank you Mr. Sampson, you do a great job with what you are have to work with. Bring on the Racino!!  

03 May 2010 4:01 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

I just saw the press conference with Pletcher post-Derby. He was great. I don't know why anyone would say he's not good or interesting with the media.

Early True Odds For a WIN in The Preakness:

Pleasant Prince-3-1

Lookin At Lucky-5-1

Paddy O' Prado-6-1

Super Saver-8-1


Mission Impazible-11-1

Schoolyard Dreams-12-1



A Little Warm-18-1


Hurricane Ike-25-1

Jackson bend-30-1

Turf Melody-30-1

03 May 2010 4:03 PM

@Sandra Warren, fine comment about Charlie - But, winning the Derby put David Cross in the crosshairs of the powers to be in Illinois.  When, he arrived with Sunny's Halo, they were laying for him to bust him on over medicating.  They needed a "Name" to put the fear into the local trainers.  This cost David Cross a great deal of money, as he had given up his stable to bring SH back to health and go to the Derby.  In addition, his wife was terminally ill at the time.  But, one of my best days was at SA, when Cross beat some highly touted filles by top winning trainers with Dianes' Halo, who had run well in the KO.  She paid 7 and a half to one.  When, I walked past some of the top clockers, they were wringing their collective hands and whining, "But, she didn't have the numbers".  I said, "Yeah, but, I have the winning ticket".  Hard to beat Derby winning trainers when they point for a race.

03 May 2010 4:07 PM

Reading some of the comments, I see that some people think that the other jockeys should try to keep Borel from riding the rail. Don't they have enough to do, just riding their own horse, going 40 miles an hour under these conditions? It seems to me that if a jockey tries to keep somebody else from running his race, such jockey would only be inviting disaster. Wiser comments suggest *following* Calvin's horse. That sounds a lot safer.

In an interview, Borel put it all in perspective when asked about his knack for winning a lot of races, on the rail. He said: "Well, YOU HAVE TO HAVE THE HORSE!" It takes humility to give credit where credit is due and Borel (unlike some other jockeys) has an abundance of it.

I read a blog written by Gomez on ESPN's website about Lucky's trip in the Derby. Very different attitude! (If I knew how, I would post a direct link... but I'm sure that, if you are interested in reading it, you will be able to find it.) I'm now convinced that Lucky needs a new rider. Gomez is an excellent jockey but by now, horse & jockey have lost confidence in each other. I don't think the relationship can be mended. Time for a divorce!

03 May 2010 4:08 PM
Terri Z

Both SuperSaver & IceBox are desendents of Secretariat and Seattle Slew by way of APIndy. One wonders if their greatgrand sires had some say in the matter. Both of their triple crown jockeys  were at the Derby to reopen the museum. And Penny Chenery was there hosting the Pegasus Parade. One wonders if something was at play by the Horseracing Angels. And Secretariat's movie is coming out this year. Maybe a run for the triple crown is within reach.

03 May 2010 4:13 PM
Matthew W

Sandra: Charlie Whittingham, "The Bald Eagle", was the greatest horse trainer of them all--he doesn't care about the Derby for DECADES--then, in his final years, he decides to try, and he wins with Ferdinand, Sunday Silence..almost again with Strodes Creek!

03 May 2010 4:13 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Ted from LA

 So glad you caught that double entendre. That REALLY makes my day. Thanks for putting a big smile on my face. Here's another one that really happened on one of the shows-Eddie was telling Wally that Wally was scared of girls and Beaver got mad and chimed in-"He is not scared of girls, I bet he could lick any girl in the school !!"  Of course "lick" meant beat up in a fight back then. "Super Saver licked 19 other horses on a sloppy track with Ice Box coming in second, putting Paddy O' Prado in the freezer."

03 May 2010 4:15 PM

Let's just hope that Calvin Borel has a couple of mounts at Pimlico prior to the Preakness and the same goes for the Belmont.  One down two togo.

03 May 2010 4:15 PM

Todd Pletcher winning the Derby for the first time was great, but to me the real story was Calvin Borel capturing yet another Kentucky Derby. He's officially the King of Churchill Downs by winning the Derby for the third time in four years, all in similar fashion. Borel is a real character, but he has a good heart and seems genuine to the core. He was flush with emotion when he said he was going to win the Triple Crown with Super Saver, but at this point I wouldn't bet against him. What a ride he is having. . .

03 May 2010 4:26 PM

I think Super Saver is a better name than Eskendereya.  Dont get me wrong Esky is a mighty horse and I hope he returns to racing.  But just the fact you have to come up with a nickname for him and it took me awhile to know how to pronounce his name.  But I guess it doesnt matter now because he didnt make the Derby.  If Super Saver wins the Preakness, he will have to contend with Ice Box who has Alydar in his dams bloodlines.  Alydar never was able to beat Affirmed but then I seriously doubt if Super Saver is another Affirmed.  Borel, learn to ride at Belmont.

03 May 2010 4:33 PM
Soldier Course

This outcome has made me wonder if we've had fields of Derby runners in recent years so mediocre that Calvin Borel, with his familiarity with the track at Churchill Downs, would have won in each instance no matter which contender he took along the rail. This win, like the wagering on it, wasn't about the horse.

Saturday was a bore. The winner's name is as uninspired as the post-race comments by his trainer and jockey. That's probably why Gary Stevens twice referred to him as "Noble's Promise" during the coverage. At least the owners showed some emotion and sincerity in the winner's circle.  

03 May 2010 4:42 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Just watched the Derby replay. Man that was close for Ice Box nipping Paddy and that cost me a lot of money. Talamo gave Sidney's Candy no chance whatsoever by letting him run so fast early. You can't blame the track at all. Sidney's will be heard from in the future. That was a bizarre ride by Gomez on Lucky but I don't think he could have won no matter what. That was a perfect, brilliant ride by Borel. No one that was in the race could have beaten Super Saver. Borel, the horse loves the track, and was very well conditioned.

03 May 2010 4:48 PM

I don't wish for anyone to misterpret my comments about over medicating by David Cross.  Cross did not over medicate.  The Illinois Board over reacted to some timing of proper medications given to SH.

Yeah, The Bald Eagle, when asked why he hadn't been to the Derby before, said "I didn't have the horse".  This was true because he dealt with older graded stakes horses.  But, Strodes Creek was interesting because he wasn't considered to be the best of the colts entering the SA Derby.  Several of them had been worn out by running in a very muddy prep race at SA in March.  In fact, the fav had dropped weight from that adventure, even though his trainer, flatly denied the charge which had been obvious to anyone who had seen the before and after.  But, Strodes Creek grew leaps and bounds in the next month and ran a strong second at CD.  If I recall, the third place colt was a Jack Van Berg runner.  

03 May 2010 4:51 PM
Tim G

Dray, like Zookeeper said Calvin said, you have to have the horse. Go ahead ask Todd, ask Calvin.

Whatever you said about MTB enough. The horse won a bunch of money for his owners last year, you don't get that either.

Did he win another race? No, not even with Calvin on him. But he made a good showing in several G1 races and that's more than any horse of yours has ever done....

Just because Calvin rides your pet (probably not much longer)that's the whole deal, I'm sure.

Face it the rail hasn't changed, the horses he was riding back when were, according to you the same caliber of nothing horses, why didn't he win it with one of those shots? Partly because the jockeys of that time were the Jerry Baileys, the Gary Stevens, the Chris McCarrons, the Pat Days. Jocks who had heart desire, no fear, skill and savvy.

BUT mostly because he didn't have the right kind of horse under him to WIN whether on the rail or not.

Go ahead and ask him about that.

ZK by the time he gets through on the rail the race is close to finished, most of the 'thinking' is coming to an end. The best race riders are instinctual, quick thinkers.

03 May 2010 4:52 PM


Very nice column. One of your best, I think; its words painted a visual picture of the individuals involved.

On a related topic, I believe Tim G.'s point was that Todd Pletcher is quite reserved and brief with his comments to the media. That may mean he is paraphrased rather than quoted, and therefore his comments may not stand out to readers of general circulation (outside horse racing) publications.

As a former news reporter myself, I know writers often paraphrase statements that don't stand out and save direct quotes for remarks that carry more emotion and impact. A good example of the latter is Calvin Borel's declaration that Super Saver is going to win the Triple Crown this year. People are more likely to see, read and remember that quote, than something more noncommittal and reserved from Todd Pletcher.

Before you jump on me, I'm not saying Pletcher should change his personality. Just explaining where I think Tim G. is coming from.

03 May 2010 4:52 PM

Speaking of names, if only Mr McMoose had had a bit more class.

But, hey, Caberneigh ran earlier on the card.

03 May 2010 4:53 PM

I have to congratulate Todd on winning.I had him on top on all my exactas, tris and supers. I messed up moving ice box to 3rd that cost me lots of cash. My wife's rule: make your original picks then adjust if necessary. I need to listen to her more often.

03 May 2010 4:54 PM

I wonder how long it will take the masses to figure out that Borel's Derby winners are one trick ponies in the Triple series.

I'm sure he's a nice guy but those of us who have been "insurance betting" him at Churchill for years also long ago figured out he's a proverbial one trick pony.  Watch him at an east or west coast track off the rail and you'll quickly figure out why he's still not highly sought after aside from the first Saturday in May.

Rachel last year was an exception to this general rule, but just about anybody could've ridden her to those wins.

03 May 2010 4:59 PM

If JJ takes Calvin off Rachel, I will be really, really upset.  It seemed that Calvin was not his usual over-the-moon-with-joy self after winning the Derby.  He didn't speak to the press Friday and his agent told him to stay home on Sunday.  Very un-Calvin-like.  

Rachel's speed figs have dropped by quite a bit so maybe she is not facing better fillies/mares so much and she's now running at their somewhat slower level.  If she truly is not as fast as she was last year, then how that possibly be Calvin's fault?

Great Derby this year and congrats to Super Saver, Calvin, Pletcher and WinStar.  All of them are most deserving.

03 May 2010 5:01 PM

Congratulations to Super Saver and all his connections.  It was a fun day from my livingroom (I hope the Preakness isn't such a mess because I've got tickets to that)  I admit to not really liking Super Saver's name much but I guess it does sort of have an economic connection this year.  I'm definitely not going to say he can't win the Triple Crown.  That would be as dumb as predicting that he certainly will win.  He definitely has a chance.  Ice Box was really moving - his race down the stretch was impressive.  Zito has a way of snatching the Belmont and I'm pretty sure that's what he intends to do.  My money will always be on Calvin at Churchill but at Belmont?  Hopefully, he'll have a chance to ride a few there.

03 May 2010 5:04 PM


Stuff !

im so GLAD that it wasnt just ME

or that the fellas would be the "ONLY ONES" BLASTING this

crassly COMMERCIALIZED, "watered"

down OAKS Derby coverage

No KID or ADULT in America learned

a doggone thing about the history

of this race or ANY o the HORSES

competinh in theis DERBY

I tell u WHAT as muchas I love

DONNA Brothers and Gary Stevens ,


Derby the wat Al Michaels and  Jim

Mc Kay did in "setting" the VIEWER

up by DELIVERING "pre - Derby prep


of celebrities

  GRANTED it' was COOL to see

DR J and his wife @ CHURCHILL

Down and the fashions are an

IMPORTANT fabric in the whole

pageantry that is the "Derby'

we ALL GET IT !!

But ultimately it's about the


that and so did the early ESPN crew

 that included Battaglia and

Neumier, back when LESLEY vISSER

and Charlsie Cantey were in the


of course DONT FORGET

Howard Cosell and EDDIE ARCARO



A lot of "QUALITY TIME" where

the last 30 (OR EVEN MORE)

Derbie w/ some mini - profiles

W THE more "exciting editions  


 were "FRITTERED" away



But Im IMPRESSED w some

observations that u guys have

made particularly on Desormeaux's

ride  in the "final STAGES"

and the move he made  EARLY that

"WIPED" Looking at LUCKY out

basically was a matter of riders

  taking the "INITIATIVE"


Baffert's horse the win, but it

prevented him from hitting

the "board"

But I have no QUALMS about some of

you  that may have been less than

"overwhelmed with SUPER SAVER'S performance o n Derby Day, but

he LOOKED like he had something left

BUT U really "never KNOW" until the horse pops out of the gate


I would harbor to guess  thatif

LOOOKIN@ LUCKY  dosent "GO in the


  His chances probably are going

to be "enhanced"


"romance" the TRIPLE Crown

u want 2 BELEIVE that the Derby

winner can "repeat" in Baltimore,

 but this bunch may be in a

BETTER positioNn if u look at


NOBLE'S PROMISE, who I thought ran VERY well, TO CHALLENGE

SUPER Saver, but Ice Box and

LOOKING AT lUCKY are probably

going to "skip" the next one:


And what's the likelhood that

horse I THINK has the best chance

to do DAMAGE, will run in 2 weeks

         that would be


who had a "troubled trip in the

Louisiana Derby, yet finished  

3rd IN WHAT i THOUGHT was, 2 be  

honest w / u guys was, next 2


arguably the MOST IMPRESSIVE  

   prep PERFORMANCE of the spring

at LEAST in defeat if u dont AGREE

it was near the TOP OVERALL


tremendous UPSIDE to him -

sort OF has that TOUCH GOLD

type stride "real athletic"

  but KEEP IN MIND :

He's owned by WIN STAR

THE CASNER'S and the Troutt's are

probably NOT GOING 2

SPOIL  THEIR OWN chance to

possibly CONTEND for a


But something tells me just like the

"hunch I had that despite the defection this was  TODD PLETCHER'S year,

that his Derby winner will RUN


though I expect to see

A couple ofchallengers "RUN WELL"

compared to LAST YEAR,

where no one came "RUNNING" after

MINE That Bird came blasted his

way to the lead

THIS BUNCH had some horse, MUDDY

CONDITIONS and all,  making up  

some GROUND in the stretch, and

though I think  most of them

    will "BOUNCE'

I think someone will make the

Preakness competitive

 But I think this horse has a

chance to do what REAL QUIET did

improve, and run a  bang up RACE

I wont go out on a LIMB and say

he's going to "blow the doors off"

the field, a la FUNNY CIDE and

SMARTY Jones, but I think COULD

fall in the "middle", like 2 or 3

lENGTHS  in front, but no more

than 5 like Big BROWN,

CALVIN knows better than to drain

this horse's "tank" if the race

becomes a "no contest with all

the 'marbles at stake

at the BELMONT

what do u guys THINK?

03 May 2010 5:21 PM

Hey! Soldier Course,

Welcome back. It's been a long time. Sorry you think the Derby was a bore. Maybe it was the absence of a super star that left you wanting more excitement.

For me, it was more enjoyable than before, because I put so much time into it. Watching and re-watching all the preps, studying the charts, learning all I could about the horses and their pedigrees. It really added to my appreciation of the race itself and all the work needed by all involved to even get in the race, never mind win it.

Glad you're back. Hope you can regain your enthousiasm for the sport. Maybe you'll get in the groove again... Lexington is waiting for your next visit! That should cure the blues!  :)

03 May 2010 5:26 PM

The fact is that no colt in the 3 year old division has moved forward off each race like Super Saver, less maybe Eskendereya and Ice Box, niether of which will be at Pimlico.  Super Saver will be a deserved short price favorite.  Previous concerns that he had to be on the lead are void.  9.5 furlongs should be in his wheelhouse.  The Belmont is always another story, but there is a very good chance he'll pick up the Preakness.  Besides, Baffert stated 50-50 for LAL and Conveyance to be @ Pimlico, but most would agree his body language was negative on the idea.

03 May 2010 5:45 PM

Baffert told Gomez to break on top and send him.  With Ice Box dropping back, NP starts to grind on Lucky.  A little bumping and shoving into the first turn between the 2.  Some how NP is 2nd-3rd running the far turn and Lucky by then has been shuffled back 15 lengths (at one point 20).  A tale of two horse that had the SAME position 100 yards out of the gate.  Of course he was tired from the 1/8th pole on.  Gomez was trying to close 15 lengths.  Not the best ride...Ice Box looked like the only horse running.

03 May 2010 5:48 PM
Will W

I believe Pletcher when he says others put more weight on the fact that he had not won a Kentucky Derby than he did. He showed exceptional wisdom and maturity in the way he handled the incessant questioning from the media as to how much this "failure" was weighing on him, never getting out of sorts and remaining even tempered when endlessly asked that question. Good indication this "failure" was not weighing on him like the press was insinuating. He's not about to let his success as a trainer be defined by how his horses performed in a bumper car, freeway cut off, calvary charge piece of chaos the Kentucky Derby has been allowed to disintegrate into - any more so than a Bobby Frankel would. Although clearly more happy than relieved after winning the Derby, Pletcher showed more visible emotion when Rags to Riches made history by beating Curlin in the Belmont to become the first filly in history to win the Belmont Stakes. That was more of a legitimate defining moment for Pletcher as a trainer than when Super Saver won the Derby because fast-closing Ice Box was twice blocked in the stretch after running far farther than Super Saver hadand the ill-fated Looking for Lucky had been twice slammed hard into the rail and propped before he reached the first turn. Like Baffert, I wish Gomez had pulled him up and saved the colt for a more legitimate Triple Crown test in a field-reduced Preakness limited to 14 horses rather than wearing the horse through the remainder of the Derby run when his chances of winning were gone early. As for Calvin, he figured out the race having learned in the Arkansas Derby his horse could relax off the lead and gave Super Saver a masterful rail skimming trip, rated perfectly on the inside off a suicidal pace. NBC commentators claimed Calvin was shedding a tear during the playing of My Ol' Kentucky Home, but all I saw during the post parade was Calvin with his game face on. His display of emotion came only after the race as he was all business until the race was over and the results were in.

03 May 2010 5:54 PM
It Aint Easy being good

The fields are good every year. Keep in mind we are in a steriod free area with horse racing so your not going to see eye popping 120 beyer speeds from 3 year olds anymore! I think around 99-102 is going to be the norm.

SuperSaver is not winning the triple crown. Calvin Borel is a legend at churchill but he is not the master at belmont or pimlico. Look for looking at lucky to turn the tables in the preakness and I believe that the preakness is one of the great betting races around due to a smaller field and a couple of horses that run know they dont belong in that race aka jacksons bend and pleasant prince!

03 May 2010 6:11 PM

Draynay, you really need to quit trying to make yourself look like a genius.  Like I said in my previous post, you never said anything about Borel BEFORE the Derby, in fact, no one did, not even the media.  After the race, the media starts talking about how great Borel is but at the least the media did not pretend that they "knew" Borel is the best at KD.  What they said was CB solidified himself as the best jockey when it comes to the derby because he accomplished a feat no one has (3 derby wins in 4 years).  As oppose to you, you start claiming that you learned your lesson from last year, anyone can say that after he already won the race.  You NEVER mentioned any angles in your handicapping of the derby race PRIOR to the race about advantages with jockeys.  I actually mentioned jockeys when I was talking about NP and IceBox, I told Jason in his other blog that Willie M couldn't get him out fast enough from the 3rd hole, well he did but causing troubles for others but that's the derby for ya.  I also mentioned that Jose Lezcano is an underrated jockey, I predicted he would pull IB way back and run his Florida Derby race and he did a really great job handling IB near the top of the stretch as he again encountered trouble there before surging again.  Even the previous day, when I read the article about SS being the favorite in the advance wagering, NOT ONE MENTION of CB as an advantage for SS.  Knowing you, if you really thought about Borel being a great derby winner, then you would've been "schooling" the bloggers here about who the best jockey is to win the derby... and would've been telling everyone to bet on Borel but I never saw you post anything about Borel until AFTER he'd won.  Yes, now everyone sees how great he is when it comes to the derby but not PRIOR to the race.  I actually think except for those who already decided they like the horse (Super Saver), everyone was surprised that Borel won the race again simply because they let him get the rail AGAIN.

So stop trying to make yourself look like a genius by pretending you really had this Borel angle when you handicapped the derby.  If you would've said "You know what, I remember what Borel did last year and I decided to go with him because the track is wet similar to last year and he might get the rail again....and guess what I was right and hit it big time!", I would've believed that...instead you decided to try make yourself look like a genius and in the end your just made yourself look like a fool.  AGAIN.  Aren't you tired of looking like a fool ??  Just so you know, I will never tire of proving you as a joke :)

Back to the preakness...

Anyone think there should be a special P3 for the TC races ? and a special prize if there's a TC winner and someone hits it ?  I think that would be a popular exotic.  A guaranteed pool of maybe  1M for the winning ticket (or split amongst the winners).  Add a special P4 to include the Oaks as the first leg.  It might even become more popular than the KD future wagering.  Just a thought... :)

If IceBox or Make Music For Me doesn't run in the preakness, I'm going with SS, Dublin, Aikenite and Pleasant Prince.  If none of them wins, I reserve the right to change my pick of the winner after the race is over.  Just because I'm a great handicapper!! ;)

03 May 2010 6:12 PM

I truly appreciate the fact Calvin Borel came from such humble beginnings and has remained humble.  I remember seeing a picture of him and his fiance at a White House dinner when he won with Mind That Bird and the neck of his tuxedo shirt looked three sizes too big. It really made me smile....but could never match the smile on his face! He is great for horse racing and no one can argue with that.

I'm also very happy for the WinStar connections and Todd Pletcher....class act all the way.      

03 May 2010 6:20 PM

Here's some proof that Draynay doesn't know what he's talking about...he contradicted himself with 2 posts that's only 3 hours apart LOL, his first post calls MTB a super horse, then 3 hours later...well, you can read it yourself HAHAHAHA :

Anyone who thinks Super Saver is a better horse then LAL or Noble will get a surprise for sure at the Preakness.  Borel won last year on a super horse.  Super Saver is no Super horse.

draynay 03 May 2010 12:53 PM

Tim, your comments have gone from strange to just plain silly.  Borel through EXPERIENCE has learned how to win the Derby.  Do you see MTB winning anything since ?  I doubt if the horse will EVER win anything again.  

draynay 03 May 2010 3:58 PM

03 May 2010 6:26 PM

Calvin is finally getting some respect. Pletcher is lucky to have him ride SS. Smart people at Winstar that recognize talent. If not for them Pletcher would have no KD.

03 May 2010 6:31 PM

Super Saver may be the name of a supermarket, but other famous racehorses have mediocre names too; they only sound great today because of their legendary status'. Seattle Slew and Sir Barton - two rather silly names if you think about it. So I hardly think a bad name disqualifies a horse from winning the Triple Crown; I prefer to look at past performances! I have do reservations about Super Saver sweeping it, based partly on successive failures of some excellent horses - though I must congradulate Pletcher and Borel on jobs very well done in the Derby.

03 May 2010 6:32 PM

great race by SS & IB.

a question, am i missing something or what, its regarding the derby starting gate position, i had thought of this the previous year too, since the gate for the derby is placed not in the shoot but practically on the main track, it appears if the #1,2 horse breaks straight they litarelly have to shove the #3 horse to avoid running into the rail, if its true why do they not place the gate in such a position that all horses breaking straight should have no difficulty rather than run into , in this case the rail.

Am i missing something?

03 May 2010 6:33 PM
jay shaer

congratulation mr.eliot walden.

if it were not for your racing

shrewdness this great derby win

would have never had happened!!

03 May 2010 6:33 PM
Dreamer's Mom

FYI-you CAN change the name of a horse once it has been registered with The Jockey Club-case in point, Ferragamo is now known as FAYREGAMO (or maybe 2 MM's).  I also know of a colt that had his name changed after his 2yr old year, but of course I can't think of it at the moment.  I like Super Saver-it pays tribute to his dam, but I wonder where Saver comes in...maybe cuz' the point is to "save" ground?  Good thing he has Borel!

03 May 2010 6:39 PM

Lucky was hangin out in the back with Ice Box and Make Music for me who was running last spotting the pace a 29 lenght lead at the 1/2.

       1/4    1/2   3/4   1 m

Lucky    18     18    18   14

Ice Box  19     19    19   15

Make Mus 20     20    20   13

03 May 2010 7:18 PM

I'm beginning to think there is little sense in reading these blogs unless I am in the mood to see a beautiful horse "trashed" because he isn't good enough.  Well, Super Saver did it, he won The Derby!  Why say he isn't good enough for The Derby or The Triple?  Quoting from George Vecsey's NYTs article?  "Pletcher and Borel will surely be back here on the first Saturday in May, but Super Saver does not have to come back.  Super Saver has had his one day in Louisville.  He is Secretariat; he is Mine That Bird.  This day of ominous weather will forever belong to him."

Some of you might recall Super Saver is a half-brother of Monarchos, 2001 Winner of The Derby.  Stop picking on Super Saver!  He is a beautiful, speedy horse!  Will he win the Triple Crown?  In addition to talent, it takes a lot of luck to be a TC winner.  In the meantime, let us enjoy Super Saver's win!

03 May 2010 7:25 PM
Big Brown's Buddy

You'd think, after last year's Derby, I'd have learned to NOT bet against Calvin in the slop at the KD! But I just HAD to go with my favorites.... even after watching Calvin win beforehand in another race on Saturday in the same way.  But I am happy he brought Pletcher his first KD win.

Must admit that I was really cheering for Devil May Care - had a burst of excitement for about a second, when Durkin announced she was making her move on the outside.... then she faded.  Hey, 10th place - the way I look at it,she defeated 10 other colts, and that's a win for her, as far as I'm concerned.  She's about the only one I haven't about since the Derby - anyone know how she came out of it?  

Lookin' At Lucky got a bad trip. Got bumped twice, the second one he had to be brought up short or crash into another horse.  Wouldn't have blamed Gomez if he'd slugged someone after this race - Lord knows I wanted to!

But above all, I'm just glad that all racers finished safely.

03 May 2010 7:34 PM

I think this photo shows the clouds parting and the sun shining down on Calvin:

03 May 2010 7:54 PM
Fire Slam

C-Bo has got to be considered one of the best of all time.

If Todd P. cant show more emotion after winning the KY Derby for the first time, something is wrong. The news showed him doing nothing more then pumping his fist, and then straightening up his suit and walking.

You would think after going 0-24, and getting your first win you would be jumping up down. Especially after your horse hooked up at the top of the stretch and dueled till the finish.

Think back to Chip Woolley when he won it. All hugs and kisses. What about Carl Nafzger and his call to the owner and how excited they were?

Have some fun Todd!!!

03 May 2010 8:08 PM

Haven't read through the whole blog--I've been out of town.  Someone may have already mentioned this, but Super Saver as in (superfecta saver) is how I interpret the name.  I haven't thought of the "blue plate special"

or a Greyhound bus special express fare until reading some blog comments.

Borel's remarks about winning the Triple Crown, especially saying something like, "Well, now I have to" were serious w/a bit of humor

tossed in the mix.  Didn't bother me a bit.

03 May 2010 8:52 PM

Super Saver is also Airline slang for a great deal.

Target--to be Flying down the stretch?

Yup, I know the time was slow.  Track surface.

03 May 2010 8:55 PM

Baffert should take LAL and COnveyance back to LA and get them geared up for the summer races. I would actually like to see LAL try the grass.  LAL will make a nice stallion prospect.  With wins on all three surfaces.  Nobles Promise is a miler and the more NP runs in classic races the more it will hurt his stud career.  Ice Box will be very tough in the Belmont.  

I hear Winstar is out of Super Saver hats.  

03 May 2010 8:57 PM
The King of the Derby

I have been trying to ascertain who are the horses that Pounded into lookin at lucky as he came down the lane the first time. After  the initial bump with the (2) there was a huge bump with what looked like the (6) then the (10) pushing against both of them. Did anyone see that? It seemed wanton and intentional..I am not making excuses but i bet that the conversation that Gomez had with Baffert would say it all. Congrats to Super Saver he demonstrated he was one of the best.

03 May 2010 9:01 PM


I like LAL even more now than I did before the Derby......If you take a look at the replay it kind of looked like LAL was banged into so hard in front of the grandstand he actually reared up on his hind feet.......and this after being pushed and shoved earlier.....I don't expect you to understand that but I will say that NP would never finish in front of LAL at any time in future meetings unless there is interference of some kind.....I will also say that if LAL got the trip NP did and grabbed the lead at the top of the stretch he wouldn't have folded like a cheap suitcase like your NP did.

03 May 2010 9:12 PM
Tim G

The Jockey Club rules on a name change:

A foal's name may be changed at any time PRIOR TO STARTING IN ITS FIRST RACE. ORDINARILY, NO NAME CHANGE WILL BE PERMITTED AFTER A HORSE HAS STARTED IN ITS FIRST RACE OR HAS BEEN USED FOR BREEDING PURPOSES. However, in the event a name MUST be changed after a horse has started in its first race, both the old and new names should be used until the horse has raced three times following the name change.

Not easy to change a name, easier if it's a foreign foal.

The bible of naming for owners and breeders, can be found on the Jockey Club website. It's kind of fun to see what names are available, how you reserve a name, all the rules and such. For those of you dreaming of owning a race horse it's eye opening and one of the fun things.

CV yes, thank you! Having a conversation with the guy and what he presents to the public are like night and day.

I wouldn't go so far as Billy Reed the multiple Eclipse Award winning writer, but an excerpt from what he said:

"Pletcher comes off more as a modern corporate CEO. He’s bland, to put it bluntly,"

A couple years ago someone said he had the personality of an undertaker. Not MY WORDS, but the way he is perceived by writers and fans.

Zito doesn't always say a lot but he gets so excited, lots of them showed a lot of emotion even Carl.

Not Todd's style I know.

03 May 2010 9:26 PM
Paula Higgins

Annette, please thank your son for me for his service to our country. Loved his comment!

Interesting that some people think Super Saver can grind out a Triple Crown win. Would love to see that. I think Ice Box is going to be tough competition, especially if he runs in the Belmont.

03 May 2010 9:48 PM


There has been some blogger on here that said he bet Dublin on the future wager's in Vegas, then he come's with a horse named Blame that Cat, then he mention's Noble's Promise, also mention's Lookin at Lucky (which he has said he would not take a horse that ran on a plastic surface). I can not remember his name right now, but if you think of who it is, please give us his name.

03 May 2010 9:50 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Don't try to tell me that Todd Pletcher doesn't express emotion. I saw him walking from the restaurant Derby night and he was singing-"Zippitty do dah, zippitty ay, my oh my, what a wonderful day!" Then he jumped up in the air and clicked his heels together, then whistled the same song, and jumped up in the air and clicked his heels together again. I must say, he had quite a strut to his step. Kind of a Super Strut with a great big smile and sparkles in his eyes.

03 May 2010 9:50 PM

Dreamer's Mom,

Maybe you were thinking of Valenzeri whose named was changed to Take Control. But the change was made before he ever raced. He is the first colt out of Azeri (one of my favorites). He was in training with Bob Baffert and is sidelined with (I believe) shin problems.

Tim G,

Thanks for the information on *when* a change of name can be made. I knew it was possible but I didn't know what the rules where.

03 May 2010 9:54 PM
Dreamer's Mom

As to the Jockey Club rules on naming horses-whatever!  You want to talk about arbitrary!  Let's see-can't be suggestive so please explain Zippers Down and Motel Mischief.  Can't be a "brand" name so please explain "Paxil".  Then there is "Grand Island"  We tried to name one with our initials and a last name-sorry, can't be named after a real person.  There was no real person!  The Jockey Club really needs to stick to the rules.  I know for a fact the 2yr old I knew by one name didn't race with 2 names as a 3!  

O.K.-off the soap box!  

03 May 2010 9:55 PM

Tim G

Regarding Calvin pre: 2007.  I can't say for sure, but didn't he have personal problems and substance abuse problems earlier on in his career?  Something like that would surely compromise a career.  It seems to me that since Street Sense and the 2006 BC Juv. Calvin stated gaining confidence in himself and has been one of the best big race riders around. LOL

03 May 2010 10:01 PM

Tim G.

You're right about The Jockey Club website.  I just used it in early March and sent my first choice as my only choice and after a couple days the name was reviewed and accepted.  It's much easier than sending in names via mail and waiting and waiting for results.

Being able to see all the names in use helps point you in the right direction.

Getting the right name meant a lot to the people involved in the history of the name of this particular horse, and they didn't have to wait long.  

It's an interesting site.  

03 May 2010 10:03 PM
Robin from Maryland

I guess I'll take a negative approach, and will no doubt get much flack....Cudos to Calvin, can't seem to say the same for Todd.  Don't like him, never will.  Saw his Great Boss - The Coach run one too many sore horses, resulting in the usual EOT. Now I'm not saying TP handles his barn the same way-but that's my opinion!!! Super Saver looked tired and leg weary to me finishing up,Not TC material.  At least everyone came home safe and sound.

03 May 2010 10:04 PM


Thanks for the link to the great picture of "They're off in the KD 136". I hadn't seen one (this year) from that perspective. Excellent photo! Besides the sun shining on him, you can clearly see how Calvin gets his horse OUT of the gate and into contention right from the start. Of course he would humbly say: "You have to have the horse!" and he would be right. Even Calvin cannot perform miracles... but he comes close.

03 May 2010 10:05 PM

It's semi-official: The Blood Horse CAO (chief ammusement officer) has recommended a change in title for the magazine, in light of current taste which recognizes that its more about the jockey, than the horse.

Clyde Fern, the CAO, succinctly pointed out, in a well-attended meeting, that Derby winning horses have never been invited to the White House, nor are they trotted out (pardon the pun) before late- night TV audiences. Should there be a TC winner this year, who-ya-gonna-call? The jockey, naturally.

In a related matter, one which noted, at the same meeting, that it's only a matter of time before a mediocre colt will be propelled to victory in the TC, mainly due to the daring-do of its brilliant rider, but also that its equine competition was less than stellar (much less).

That colt will have joined a rather exclusive roster of names, which includes War Admiral, Citation, Secretariat, Seattle Slew, and Affirmed.

Superior colts Spectacular Bid, Risen Star and Silver Charm failed, but a "Super Saver" might not, which, for some (or many) diminishes the meaning of the Triple Crown--hence the shift to the jockeys' importance in horse racing.

So, the new name for The Blood Horse? "Jockey Shorts Magazine"--what else?

03 May 2010 10:16 PM
Golden Gate

Yeah for calvin, Pletcher and Super Saver. I have the same problem with his name but I live in Wal Mart hq country and still miss Sam )-: and the way he really treeated people right.

But to tell you the truth I have heard worse names....Lotsofpoop  Green Monkey...poor babies 0-:

03 May 2010 10:17 PM

There is a lesson in all of this. The owners of SuperSaver insisted upon Calvin riding him. Todd Pletcher had a disagreement with Borel in the past and he has not riden Pletcher's horses. They put aside their differences and Pletcher finally won a Derby. Now,with Pletcher's assistance, Borel will finally get some mounts at Belmont to possiblity win the triple crown.

03 May 2010 10:20 PM

I must admit, I can relate to what Soldier Course wrote.  This Derby left me fairly uninspired.  I was just relieved everyone made it back to their barns safe, and happy for Mr. Pletcher who is a most deserving winner.  He takes care of his horses and seems to do right by them.  I thought Calvin was uncharacteristically subdued before and after, which left me wondering if his change in demeanor was related to the previous days loss, and aftermath thereof, on the "other filly".  I feel very sorry for Lookin at Lucky, Sidney's Candy, Conveyance, Line of David, and to a lesser extent Icebox.  Icebox is a smallish colt who really got knocked around.  But he valiantly did his connections proud, and probably should have been the Derby winner.  The talents of Sidney, Line of David, and Conveyance were wasted in this race.  What is odd to me is that the same connections that "baby" their horse, nursing him through the preps, should then turn around and throw him to the wolves in a Kentucky Derby being run over the slop on a dangerous sealed track.  Sidney probably should have been scratched rather than break from post 20, and saved for the Preakness.  It was ugly watching him backing up faster than horses were moving forward trying to avoid smacking into him.  Sidney deserved better than that, and I only hope he has not sustained physical injuries as a result.  It won't even look good on his resume to say he was 17th in the Kentucky Derby, so the exercise was pointless, deleterious even.  And what can you say about Lucky, other than he is unlucky and incredibly valiant.  The addition of the auxiliary gate pushes the entire apparatus towards the infield, thus resulting in post 1 not having it's own lane.  The horse needs to veer to the right after breaking in order to find/make a lane... just ridiculous.  A horse with a lesser mind than Lucky's, put in that same situation, may have leaped over the rail.  And yes, Gomez and Baffert's plan was to get into position behind Calvin on Super Saver on the rail, and do whatever he does.... but it looks like that was also Paddy and Kent's plan.  Something had to give.  What did Einstein say about two solid objects occupying  the same space at the same time?  I was also very relieved to see that Dublin behaved himself and did not bolt, like some were predicting, which would have been a disaster.  Also happy that Jackson Bend finished the race and did relatively well, despite the dire predictions from so many well-versed people.  Now, on to the Pimlico...

03 May 2010 10:25 PM


Are you related to Dr Drunkinbum?

03 May 2010 10:32 PM

Two questions, I know they are off the subject, but...

1. Coldfacts....where are you?

2. Edgar Prado..where were you?

Can someone explain the absence of Prado?  I must be out of the loop.  Just curious.

03 May 2010 10:50 PM

First, congratulations to WinStar, Todd and Calvin. All are deserving.  I've criticized Pletcher in the past for running so many horses, many of which (in my opinion) didn't even belong in the Derby.  This year he really only needed one - maybe he will no longer feel he needs to "flood" the field.

In reply to some of the comments; first, I don't see that "Super Saver" is any worse a name than many other Derby runners.  For example "Ice Box".

Don; I disagree with your critisism of Kent on Paddy O'Prado. He had to check and steer around tiring horses twice during the stretch; if not for that I feel he would have held second despite Ice Box' closing kick.  I had an Exacta bet on SS and Paddy, but I'm still not blaming Kent.

Jersey Boy; I haven't read the statement you attribute to Gomez re: having no horse in the final furlong.  Maybe he did say that but what race were you watching?  I think Lucky was running on as well as any except with the exception of Ice Box in the final furlong.  Vic S (Stately Victor's #1 Fan) - your horse is beautiful but I didn't see anything in his Derby run to make me think he'll clean up in the Preakness and Belmont.  In fact, I don't think I even see him on the "Probables" or even the "Possibles" lists for the Preakness.

Finally, I don't much care for people going off track in these blogs, but since they have I'll add my 2 cents worth re: Rachel.  To GW Bushwacker; what "many many loses" are you talking about; all 5?  To Draynot; Rachel "can't even win much less compete in a G3?" - just who was that filly alongside Unbridled Belle the length of the stretch? And comparing RA to a claimer?  What makes you so nasty in your comments about Rachel?

03 May 2010 11:03 PM
Tim G

Dreamers Mom, couldn't find Zippers Down on the registry no Paxil. Motel Mischief, well guess a mind could wander that way. "Names that are suggestive or have a vulgar or obscene meaning; names considered in poor taste; or names that may be offensive to religious, political or ethnic groups;" Doesn't really sound vulgar or obscene and is borderline suggestive.

Coined names require an explanation. No brand names, Big Brown? We all know what it means but it's not specific.

Last names? There's a real person SOMEWHERE with most last names, get written permission and you're fine. Initials? Hmm kind of Arabian or Quarter Horse style. Now QH, there's some names for you.

Super Saver got his name as a derivative of his dam. Paddy O' Prado would've been Bordello (dam is Fun House) but a thumbs down, not obscure like MM. Devil May Care's owner likes James Bond, Honey Ryder a Bond girl guess what name he wanted to try for. LOL

The one which got by the JC? Pegram's Isitingood. He told them it was I sittin good. He's gotten a few by them, with explanations (cough).

Robin okay, FLAK. Another one who is into rumors..Like Carl said, jealousy. You know this for a fact??? Opinions are like...uh belly buttons, everybody has one. Then there is fact, which unless you're a vet who examined one of them? You have none.

By the way unless you use the Urban Dictionary, it's Kudos.

03 May 2010 11:23 PM
Tim G

robinm (same as Robin in Maryland?)

Jerseyboy is right, GoGo said:

"When we charged for home, I thought I had a really good chance," Gomez said, but then the horse flattened out"

Baffert went even further saying that after the initial trouble LAL was done and he wished GoGo would have pulled him up. But I guess being the guy on his back and the trainer they are wrong?

Personally I didn't like GoGo's rides the last three races, but he doesn't work for me.

(Also it's Unrivaled Belle)

03 May 2010 11:32 PM

I am sick of the references to Borel's blue-collar status and lack of knowledge of the King's English versus Pletcher's urbanity or whatever it is they think he's full of. Fact is Borel, un-Englishified as he is, remains a superlative horseman and the horses--those million dollar beauties on four legs--know that he is a fluent speaker of their language. They listen, understand and that's all that matters.

03 May 2010 11:39 PM

tcc : I think I know who you're talking about.  It's the same (D) person who (R) always picked the (A) winner without (Y) any mistake (N) except (A) it was all after the winner won.  I wish (Y) I can be as good a handicapper as he is but oh well, I stick to my own handicapping skills and try to actually pick the winner before the race so that I can make some money :)

03 May 2010 11:46 PM

Congratulations to Super Saver, Todd Pletcher and Calvin. SS has a great engine and he used it to overcome slop, a crowded field and excellent competition.

After watching the race several times, I would agree with others above, that it was very obvious that Desmorueux took Paddy right into Lookin At Lucky and later he was interfered with again.  I frankly don't understand why everyone in the Baffert barn was so freaked out about PP #1 - how many times have we all watched Calvin win numerous races in that path and there he was where Lucky should have been.  You either have faith in your horse, or you don't.  I'm surprised at Garrett, he is an excellent competitor, but he doesn't usually seem to bond with horses he rides - like Mike Smith or Edgar Prado does with the mounts they ride regularly.  He just can't seem to keep Lucky out of trouble. He could have stalked Calvin all the way after regrouping and gathering Lucky up, but he didn't.  I think a complaint should have been lodged against Kent.

Given the size of the field, the slop and circus atmosphere - they all gave a good account of themselves and basically came home sound and ready to hear the bugle call them again to post.

Bless them all!

03 May 2010 11:51 PM

Jet Deck & Slew - What the heck was with the food demostrations & fashion B.S?  The Oaks & Derby are about 3 things: The horses (obviously), the mint juleps and the hats!  Does anyone watching racing really need to have food demostrations or a host who asks dumba*s questions about how the jockeys pick what they are going to wear.  Someone that ignorant should NEVER be a host at a horse race.  Fools.

04 May 2010 12:12 AM


Absolutely not--we're Irish!

04 May 2010 12:15 AM


That name looks like familiar. Here is a question for you, is that the same person who handicap's Jockey's , but not the horse's?

04 May 2010 12:28 AM

I did actually cash a win ticket on Super Saver, but honestly my thought process in picking my bet almost worked against me in this case.

I thought: What chance does Borel have of winning a THIRD Derby in 4 years???  The odds of that happening were surely greater than Super Savers 8-1 odds.  But I placed the bet anyways.  Now I know.  Never overlook Borel no matter how unlikely it seems that he can with ANOTHER Derby!

04 May 2010 12:42 AM
Only Backtalk Supporter Left In America

Backseat Rhythm is another one that's pretty suggestive. Isitingood is epic! There was a horse who ran in Canada that I heard about whose name was Fozzie Bear, who did rather well and garnered enormous fan support, but Jim Henson, Inc. demanded that the name be changed. I can't remember what the name was changed to, but once it was, no one knew who he was, so the same crowd enthusiasm wasn't there, and the horse never fared well after that. So names CAN be changed, I guess, but as it was mentioned, it doesn't happen very often.

There is a bargain store (like Goodwill) here in Sioux Falls, SD, called Super Saver! I think Calvin just wanted to ride another SS to a Derby victory! :)

As for my name, my Smarty Baby finished dead last... I still think he has potential, but maybe the Derby was a little ambitious. Hopefully he'll mature over the summer and do the old man proud! :)

04 May 2010 12:45 AM

I sincerely hope Bravo never does any more horse racing coverage.

Their Oaks broadcast was one of the poorest I've seen...little info on the horses and lots of time wasted with people cooking(WTH?) and celebrity nonsense.

NBC strayed way too far into the same sappy celebrity stuff, too. Do they think people tune into the Kentucky Derby to watch a cooking competition?

04 May 2010 1:40 AM

Finally watched NBC's taping of the Derby again; the NBC camera covered more of the horses through more of the race than the Churchill feed.

It allowed me to see the trouble Ice Box had.  By the way, Ice Box's trouble has become almost legendary, with both Beyer and Watchmaker declaring that he was clearly the best horse.  I say maybe.

Ice Box's late run was never stopped.  He actually never even had to check.  Around the far turn, he was moving quickly along the rail when a horse dropped back on to the rail in front of him.  With the inside now blocked, Lezcano had to steady ever so slightly before turning Ice Box's head to the right.  In having to wait and then pull Ive Box's head, Lezcano didn't stop Ice Box's momentum.

So far, the trouble wasn't particularly bad.  To be sure, it wasn't perfect.  The rail could have remained clear and Ice Box could have skimmed the paint and shot through similar to Street Sense and Mine That Bird.  In that sense, Ice Box had more trouble than the 07' and 09' Derby winners.  But the trouble wasn't terrible.

After having pulled Ice Box outside, Lezcano quickly found himself behind a wall of horses and had to pull on the reins again and take Ice Box even further out into the track.  It was a move very similar to the one Mike Smith made on Zenyatta in the BC Classic; after cutting inside, Smith had to wait briefly before Twice Over cleared him before swinging the big mare out into the widest path coming down the stretch.  After this 2nd alteration, Ice Box found himself in about the 5 path directly behind Dublin.

Approaching the eighth pole, Ice Box had some room to run following Dublin, but he really didn't take off.  Lezcano was riding him fairly hard when Make Music for Me ranged up outside of him and then passed him.  When that occurred, the clear space in front of Ice Box disappeared as Lezcano found himself trapped behind a retreating Dublin and Make Music for Me.

At this point, Lezcano pulled another Mike Smith, allowing Make Music for Me to clear him before taking Ice Box to the outside again.  At the end of this 3rd alteration, Ice Box was in the middle of the track widest of all.  It was then and there that Ice Box really began to pick off horses.  First it was Dublin and Make Music for Me, then Noble's Promise, and finally Paddy o' Prado.

Had Ice Box been allowed to run straight and not had to weave and make his way to the outside, yes he very easily might have won the Derby.  Or, conversely, had Super Saver had to alter course as many times, then Ice Box might have been your winner.  With this said, it wasn't a BRUTAL trip.  While there were a few instances Ice Box had to wait or swing outside, he never had his momentum stopped or even seriously slowed.  In addition, the pace setup could not have been better for his late run.  In my opinion, Lookin at Lucky had a worse trip, but it's impossible to know if Lucky would have threatened Super Saver had he experienced a clean trip.  Because Ice Box to run 2nd, I think it fair to conclude that had Ice Box not had to weave his way through the stretch, he at the very least could have cut Super Saver's winning margin to a half length.  

04 May 2010 1:50 AM


You keep on yapping about Calvin winning the Derby because of the rail......One thing that I can't understand though is why he didn't win with Rachel.  She had virtualy the same trip as Super Saver from mid way in the turn home, passing Be Fair on the outside then taking to the inside and yet she didn't win.  How come?  I thought that any time Calvin rode the rail at CD he won.  That's your latest handicapping gem isn't it?  And how come Calvin had to literally beat her all the way home while the winner ran pretty well whip free through the entire stretch?

04 May 2010 2:02 AM

I actually think Draynay's analysis of Noble's Promise has some merit.  I don't think the finish of the Derby necessarilly proves that Noble's Promise can't get a classic distance(on the other hand, it certainly didn't prove he could).

The ride Noble received from Martinez didn't help Noble's already questionable late kick.  Of the top finishers, Noble was the one closest to the blistering pace, a pace made more remarkable given how tiring and slow the track was.  Then, Noble was asked to make the first run at the two leaders.  Noble quickly did his job and blew right by Sidney and Conveyance.  

Given how fast the pace was, making the lead on the far turn had to zap alot of Noble's energy.  The same thing happened to Congaree in 2001 when he stalked right off a brutal pace, took the lead, and then tired inside the eighth pole to finish 3rd(as an aside, while everyone points to how close Point Given was to the pace in explaining his 5th place finish, few bring up the fact that Congaree was closer to the pace than was Point Given and yet still finished ahead of him.  By the way, Congaree would go on to win a gr.1 at 10 furlongs).

Had Martinez taken Noble a little further back early and then waited a little longer before asking him for his closing kick, Noble very well might have run 3rd or even won the race.  As with Lookin at Lucky, we'll never know for sure.

Given these questions, I would also advise McPeek to give the Preakness a shot.  All along, the Preakness has appeared to be the Triple Crown race most suited to Noble's strengths.  He has speed, can rate, is very consistent, and always tries hard.  If he goes in the Preakness, I put him right there up with Super Saver, Ice Box, Paddy, Lucky, and Hurricane Ike.

04 May 2010 2:10 AM


04 May 2010 3:13 AM

King of the Derby...Kent on Paddy O'Prado (10) wanted to follow Calvin.  In moving to the rail, he cut off (6) Stately Victor and pushed him into (1) LAL, who almost went over the rail.  I would call it a rodeo ride, which in itself might be expected in a 20 horse stampede. What I found offensive was Kent's statement after the race that he could have won if he wasn't bumped.  ????  When he moved over, he was already 5 lengths behind I don't know why he thought that, especially since he was the one doing the bumping.

04 May 2010 4:00 AM
Gary Lynn

JayJay...I think the Super Horse dreadneigh was referring to was last years Preakness winner. But you are spec on in saying not one mention of betting Borel before the race was history. He sounds anal retentive to me with his perfectionist needs. His Monday morning quarterpoling reeks of "I made cah-cah Mommy!"

04 May 2010 4:21 AM

Jockeys come and jockeys go but the horses stay in our hearts forever...

Penny Chenery said 37 years ago "It's ALL about the horse"..she said about a week ago "It's all about the horse"...

04 May 2010 6:31 AM


Gomez made the statement on NBC in the post-race comments right after the race.

04 May 2010 6:35 AM
Carlos n

I don't think the best horse won the Derby,but yes, the best ridden horse won and the luckiest too.We will see a different results in the Preakness(sorry but it wont be a triple crown this year). Looking at Lucky was by far the best horse in the race,any horse that still managed to run 6th on a 20 horse field after all the trouble he went before the first turn,he must be much the best of all. Borel is a good rider,but he's being very lucky too.    

I think his luck run out with Rachel,and it's a matter of time he will be replace on her,even if is not his fault she got beat,she's just not the same mare since the Woodward against older horse.

04 May 2010 7:13 AM
jimmy redneck

Mr. Pibb,

Your post on May 3 at 8:17 a.m. is most impressive. Congratulations on your win. You get the award for best Handicapper of the Derby on this blog hands down for that one!! Everybody here should have  listened to you. We need more of your kind and less of the draynay kind here.

As for me I made a few bucks on the race and thoroughly enjoyed the event for what it is.

Now on to the Preakness, Belmont, and the summer meets.

04 May 2010 8:04 AM

jayjay sounds like you lost some money. Our group has been playing the Bo-rail game on Derby Day since 2007.  I told Jason how I was going to bet including my 100 bucks on Borel to win and he told me that was last years angle and I told him Borel will never run in a Derby where I don't have 100 on his head to win.  Now, you can continue to be a non believer or you can join the Bo-rail game. Was Noble my horse for the Derby? Yep, sure was had 200 WP on the horse but that 100 on Borel to win didn't hurt now did it ? The worst part about Saturday is I boasted about General Quarters all day and then didn't put him in my pick 3 and it cost me big time.

04 May 2010 8:40 AM

jayjay, I guess you missed this post to Snow.

Snow, my LOCK did not do well in the mud but I bet on Bo-rail every single race and had my second best day of the year.  On Derby Day I will be betting on him every race AGAIN !!!

draynay 25 Apr 2010 4:51 PM

Try to keep up jayjay.

04 May 2010 8:48 AM


Open your eyes......The girls ran a quarter of a second faster and their eyeballs were dragging on the ground.  They were going ALL OUT.....Arson Squad won by more than two lengths and virtually had the race won at the 1/16th pole.  That's why you don't get it as a handicapper. You really don't know how to evaluate time in a race.

It's also interesting to note that four of those stellar G-1 horses your girl dusted last year finished in the last four spots in the Alysheba.  

LAZMANNICK 30 Apr 2010 11:16 PM

I'd like to further add that NONE of the 4 "stellar" colts RA beat last year received a single vote in the most recent national poll ranking all the top horses. There were 33 horses who got at least one vote and NONE of them were any of the colts RA beat last year!! That says it all, they just weren't that good.

04 May 2010 8:59 AM

Does anybody know the status of Esky's injury? What exactly did he injure, other than his leg? I haven't heard anything about it lately. Thanks!

Can SS win the Triple Crown? We'll see...I get more pessimistic every year. The sport has changed so much since the '70s no one really know what it takes to win it. If SS sweeps, it'll set the example of how to train/race 3-year-olds. Once again we see how important 2-year-old foundation is to win the Derby.

04 May 2010 9:03 AM
Down Under

We are spoiled for TV coverage of racing here in Australia - we now have FOUR full-time channels. I kinda cringed at the feed we were getting from the US network, and your callers must be on half wages 'cos they don't call back past the first four! Re Rachel Alexander, she was subjected to a cruel  beating by the jock in her last race as a 3YO (and the second horse was a cert beat) and I predicted then to friends that her spirit would be broken from that and she wouldn't win another race.  Right so far.

04 May 2010 9:14 AM
04 May 2010 9:14 AM

I am not a fan of Pletcher, precisely because of his cool and distant demeanor. However, I do respect his ability.

Calvin is a different story. His unbridled joy and abandon while riding the horses is what endeares him to his fans. He is fearless and loves and respects each horse he rides, from the little claimer to the Derby mount. That is what makes him special. Let him predict anything or promise whatever. His sincerity is real and he will try to make it happen. No one would try harder.

Bravo, Calvin.

04 May 2010 9:27 AM
Matthew W

Super Saver is a great name for a bad economy! I mean, it's not like his name was Hoof Hearted! If he comes out ok, keeps his weight--that's the Preakness horse to beat!

04 May 2010 10:04 AM

Only Backtalk Supporter Left In America

I think Fozzie Bear's name was changed to Bold Executive.  He's now a sire and has had some good anadian Breds.  LOL

04 May 2010 10:04 AM
Greg J.

      Just read about Awesome Act being injured during the Derby, That would explain him finishing in 19th and 61 lengths back, Hope he heals up and returns to the track down the road...

04 May 2010 10:16 AM

I'd like to further add that NONE of the 4 "stellar" colts RA beat last year received a single vote in the most recent national poll ranking all the top horses. There were 33 horses who got at least one vote and NONE of them were any of the colts RA beat last year!! That says it all, they just weren't that good.


That's okay though.  Draynay says that they're saving themselves for later in the year......Come to think of it, why doesn't CD write a special race for Rachel and her merry band of G-1 horses.  That would surely be a race for the ages.  LOL

04 May 2010 10:21 AM

Lazmannick, you're unreal.  Rachel didn't win a very close race.  The horse she ran against ran a career best race.  A 103 Beyer is a career best for her and Rachel did run a sub 143.  I expect her next race to be in the 106 to 108 range and who can deal with that? Polyetta? Don't make me laugh.  Let me know when Polyetta breaks a 100 on dirt.  Rachel is getting better in time for the real racing to begin. When Rachel loses a G1 race let me know.  GunBow, I am glad you saw what I saw.  With a little better ride Noble can win the Preakness.

04 May 2010 10:42 AM
Tim G

"jayjay sounds like you lost some money. Our group has been playing the Bo-rail game on Derby Day since 2007

draynay 04 May 2010 8:40 AM"

I'm calling BS on this statement. NO ONE who bet a Buck ($100) on Boo last year at 50-1 would have been blasting the winner the way you were.

I KNOW you never mentioned that last year in your anti-MTB diatribes.

As for NP? You see that his trainer admits he has distance limitations just like we tried to tell you? But he's just the trainer, what does he know.

Everyone says Dublin hangs, NP backs off when challenged. You can get a horse to go by, with maturity and working on them. A horse that quits when eyeball to eyeball is not such an easy fix, equine heart transplants are rare.

Lucky was one of any number who had troubled trips. Gomez didn't follow instructions, or couldn't with the horse he had under him.

I was just really surprised that only one horse came out of the auxiliary gate to finish in the top ten. Maybe I'm just trying to find the bright side but after getting squeezed, there were two horses who jumped outside and pushed the colt out, one right when he was making his move.

04 May 2010 10:46 AM
steve from st louis

To quote Mike Lupica, "The Derby again proves it's 'The Greatest Two Minutes In Sports' unless you include Thanksgiving at Tiger Woods' house."

04 May 2010 11:38 AM

"I learned my lesson last year.  

If you can't beat him join him, right?"

draynay 02 May 2010 11:15 PM

Just another example of how you twist things trying to convince people you know something.

If you truly believed yourself when you say things like this you'd have been on the Zenyatta wagon years ago. It's tough to have an ounce of credibility when you contradict what you say one day by what you said before and what you'll say tomorrow.

04 May 2010 11:38 AM

Noble is BACK !!! Look out !

draynay 04 May 2010 9:14 AM

That's what you said about Rachael before she lost for the second time in a row in a G2 race.

04 May 2010 11:40 AM

Down Under,

Last year, I had the same reaction to Calvin Borel's use of the whip. Unknown to me, at the time, was that Borel uses the new "kinder" type of whip. It makes more noise than it inflicts pain.

In my limited experience as a pleasure rider, I learned quickly that if I hit my boot instead of the horse, the result was the same. The horse would hear the sound and move without ever actually feeling the sting of the whip or the poke of my heel.

Visually the "Borel whip action" is a turn off to people who don't know the facts. The television people should make that bit of information well known to the public at large who only watch a few races a year. It's a shame that they don't, because a lot of people when observing the perceived "cruel beating" turn away from the sport, never to return.  

04 May 2010 12:47 PM
jimmy redneck

People people,

Read the quote below and ask yourself isn't that Ice Box the nay nay said had no business being in the Derby and now he wants you all to believe he bet money on him in the tri? The dude will say anything to try and convince people he knows something. I see him for what he is, a blowhard with low self esteem.

Here's his quote:

"TJ, let me help you out and give you 8 horses that have no business being in the Derby and will do little more then fill space.

Rule... gives up when confronted

Ice Box... give me a break

Mission Impazible....yes it is

Line of David.... be serious

Stately Victor.... Wrong track

American Lion..... LOL !

Discreetly Mine.... 2nd tier horse

Dean's Kitten..... Who ?"

draynay 21 Apr 2010 8:42 PM

04 May 2010 1:04 PM
Fire Slam


Must understand something about Kent Dsx. He feels he should automatically win. For some reason its his right.

I have never seen a jockey get so many favorites beat, and then complain about the trip they received.

Loved his face in the Oaks when Evening Jewel was about to win, and got nipped at the wire. Replay shows Kent looking over in total shock, as if to ask "where did that horse come from?"

He stops riding. And its really  not fair to the betting public.

Way to go C-Bo! Lets pull for Robby A. to get a Derby win now.

04 May 2010 1:11 PM

@ Down Under re: RA and Derby coverage

Right on both accounts!

04 May 2010 1:17 PM

NBC owns Bravo along with the Today Show and CNBC of course.  When one starts hearing one of the Today Show hosts say "This is my first Derby so I go with the names" and one of the "Housewives of New York" jumping up and down right behind the winning connections, one has to wonder if NBC is looking for a broader audience.  I do know they are bidding to take back the Belmont so they may "own" the entire Triple Crown.  With racing in the shape that it is, I'm not sure this is a bad thing.  I know from going to Del Mar that they seem to have tapped into the whole San Diego social sceen, which, from the looks of it, does alright with track attendance, handle, etc.  I think it does however, much like the movie Seabiscuit did, forget the other side of that coin which is gambling.  Perhaps next time, Nattalie Morales of the Today show, could have talked about the potential of making $200,000 on the superfecta.  I think this would catch even more attention than a cooking demonstration.  

04 May 2010 1:36 PM
jimmy redneck

People ask yourselves this as well,

Does this sound like a guy who truly bet Super Saver and Ice Box and hit a trifecta or like someone who is trying to convince you he did?

"I will be tossing all the speed and anyone who thinks Ice Box hits the board needs their head examined."

draynay 15 Apr 2010 11:32 AM

Next speaking on Eskendereya nay nay clearly wasn't touting Super Saver or any Pletcher horse. Yet he wants you to believe he planned for years to bet any horse Borel rides in the Derby. Sometimes the lies we spew come back to bite us in the rear based on what we said before on record.

"Mr. Pletcher I think you better get you other horses ready and pray."

draynay 17 Apr 2010 6:26 PM

Pray? Now he tells you he was going to bet Super Saver all along and he jumped on the Borel bandwagon after last year?  

Again here's more nay nay crap. Doesn't exactally sound like someone who has planned to bet one of his horses now does it?

"My point has always been why does anyone give him a young colt if they dream of winning the Derby? He doesn't know how to win it so why give him your young horse? What does he have to do ? 0 for 30 maybe 0 for 40 before owners get a clue ? Tim, answer me one question. What does Mr. Pletcher do different then say Baffert to get a horse ready for the Derby? Name just one thing."

draynay 18 Apr 2010 3:58 PM

More evidence he had no plan to bet Super Saver. Why give this guy the time of day when he clearly lies in a feeble attempt to make himself look right?  

04 May 2010 1:40 PM

Can anyone tell me how Dublin is going to win the Preakness?  Time for Lukas to give the horse a break, regroup, and race another day.  Some of the others make sense.  Sure NP had the lead at a mile.  Lucky has that 1 sustained kick that needs to be perfectly primed (new jockey? less horses) and Ice Box and Padio being on the ticket the first time around.  

04 May 2010 1:44 PM
Soldier Course


Hi to you, and thanks for the welcome back. I should have mentioned that Saturday was not a total bore for me, because I was thrilled when General Quarters won the Woodford Reserve Turf. That story sure had a special ending.

Still puzzling about the name Super Saver. Usually with homebreds, there's more thought and affection put into the name. After this Derby win, maybe they could call him "Mon O'Rail".  

04 May 2010 1:48 PM

Draynay : my bad, I guess you did have that Borel angle but I really don't believe you hit anything but the win.

FYI though, I didn't lose money as I did post my bets 3 days before the derby so you also try and keep up :

Here's what my bets going to look like on saturday :

$5 exacta box :

2,1 with 4,6,8,9,10,16

$20 exacta box :

2 with 1

Trifecta :

2,1,4 with 2,1,4,6,8,9,10 with 2,1,4,6,8,9,10,16,13,14

2,1,8 with 2,1,4,8 with 2,1,3,4,6,8,9,10,13,14,16

2,8,9 with 2,1,6,8,9,10 with 2,1,6,8,9,10

Superfecta :

BOX : 2,1,8,4,9

2,1,8 with 2,1,8,4,9,10, with 2,1,4,6,8,9,10 with 2,1,4,6,8,9,10,16,13,14

I will say this though, if it's wet fast, whoever will be on the lead or stalking very close to the lead will win it.  So all handicapping from here on to about an hour before the start of the race will be determined on how the weather plays out and the condition of the track (at least for me.)

It's only Thursday!!!!!  I'm goin' insane!

Good luck everyone and peace!  

jayjay 29 Apr 2010 1:00 PM

The only change on my tickets are taking out LAL to win on most of my big exotic bets.  I bet a total of 1200 on the derby and won about 3200 so I don't think that is losing money.  Most of my losing bets, I had IceBox on top as single.  I remember you telling me I'm trying to "goat" (really, he meant "goad") you in to telling me the winner lol, and in the end you end up using my horse lol.

Gary Lynn : I see that now.

I guess I should blog about Pletcher too.  I really don't think what the big deal is with his attitude on and off camera, his demeanor, his emotional reaction to winning the derby.  Pletcher's contribution to the horse racing industry should not be measured by how he is on camera, he's doesn't seem to be the enthusiastic type, like someone already mentioned, he's more of the serious businesslike type person.  I saw him on NBC when he watched SS won and pumped his fist in the air several times.  That's pretty much all you'll get from him.  

His contribution to making the industry more popular ??  Well, he contributed by training the winner, he gave us the 2010 Kentucky Derby winner, his horse had a popular jockey and it made the news.  The potential new fans of horse racing at this time really don't care about TP or CB, they only care about the horses and its names.

I hope more people become fans of horse racing and the sport continues to prosper.  I think with great horses like Zenyatta and Blind Luck and the up and coming colts keeps winning so that it attracts more people.  Oh yeah, if RA runs again, I really hope she wins easily, otherwise they should retire her as that won't really attract new fans specially if they put a lot of money on her.

04 May 2010 2:05 PM

jimmy redneck,

I like you. In case you are fairly new here the nay nay has been doing the same thing for years. Most of us can see him for what he is. Don't hold your breath that he's taking his schtick somewhere else though. He still has some here fooled and it seems to be enough to feed his low esteem.

04 May 2010 2:48 PM
Tim G

Householder, we're going to start giving horses a break every 4 races?

The colt is fine. He recently had a long layoff and is JUST starting to round into shape. A setback when Nakatani ran him from one side of the track to the other in the Rebel. Kind of trouble with the mud like a few of them and a troubled trip.

jayjay, we need to do something to give some boost to racing. Our more charismatic guys appeal to the general public and casual fan.

For whatever reason people like to feel they 'know' the parties involved or have a connection in some way. Why are movie, singing and reality stars so popular?

People who don't watch horse racing like Jockeys. I've heard that from a few friends around the country.

Bravo? Not my cup of tea but a different type of fan because believe me a lot of people watch Top Chef and The Real Housewives and all the rest of that kind of stuff. Any positive publicity or exposure is fine with me.

04 May 2010 3:19 PM

To "2:24's" comments about Todd Pletcher reducing the size of his barn, so he could then "really excel at his craft..."  Are you kidding me?  Do you not consider him, 4 Time Eclipse Award Winning Trainer (not including his horses' awards), Belmont Stakes Winner, one of the most winningness trainers of all times ("more Grade 1 Stakes races this century, according on one Louisville journalist), a great trainer, a person who could tell you about the condition/training/etc of anyone of his horses at any given time, to have not yet "excelled at his craft..."  What more do you want from the man?  

Oh, and I failed to even mention a Kentucky Derby Winner.  way to go Pletcher, his staff, Borel, Super Saver and WinStar Farms for a job well done.

04 May 2010 3:23 PM
Tim G

Also jayjay, did you see Todd after Rags won? Also in person? He's not that phlegmatic.

As far as Rachel? No one will even see her run. You're talking about handicappers. Whereas we need the the gamblers to keep us in business we need to attract a new generation of potential gamblers, that's why we need to attract fans who will subsequently become gamblers. Fans for the sake of fans? Not so much. But fans who will potentially gamble or get into the industry, yep.

04 May 2010 3:25 PM

Jimmy Redneck you must be new here. I bet on a Pletcher horse to win the Derby last year too. Like I said I bet on Borel to win EVERY race during the Derby.  It works try it instead of knocking me. Jayjay if you check my post and my 6 horse box you will see I hit the Tri as well. But didn't get rich by any means. I hit the first two races and the DD but then did not hit another win ticket until Mona de Momma came home with me screaming at 8 to 1.  Atta Boy took it wire to wire for me and then I passed on General Quarters and settled on Loup Breton who was the better horse but Gomez just couldn't find the room in time.  And of course Borel helped me out by winning the Derby but Noble getting 4th would have made me rich.  All in all not a bad Derby for me but I am going to make sure I add Julien to every pick 3 next year I suggest you do the same.

04 May 2010 3:37 PM

Jimmy Redneck I was right about EVERY one of those horses but when it came up wet only you must have left Ice Box out of your Super because everyone else on the planet saw his bullet 46.2 sly B.  You can read my post on the 6 horses I boxed and all finished in the top 10.  Music for Me I tossed and so did many others.  What else you got ?

04 May 2010 3:43 PM

On second thought...I think Baffert should rest Lookin at Lucky and bring him back in the Swaps at Hollywood Park.  

04 May 2010 3:45 PM
jimmy redneck


So you say but I don't buy it. Claiming after the fact that you bet a horse you said anyone who bets on it should have their head examined is BS in my book. If I take anyones advice from here it would be mr. pibb who if you read his post was all over those who had no chance to win including your #1 and backed it by showing his earlier posts that unlike yours weren't contradictory. That was good handicapping. Spew all the garbage you want, I don't buy a word you say as your word means nothing because it changes with the wind.

By the way I did play Ice Box in the exacta's and tri's and hit on both. Good thing I didn't listen to your advice and not play him.  

04 May 2010 4:23 PM
Tim G

Draynay, Just when you start that strategy one of these guys will hit a slump... Especially with the jock colony in Cal bailing and a lot of new riders coming in.

I thought you said you were already rich.....remember that comment on here last year to a guy I know.

If Pletcher can't train a horse for the Derby then no jock could get him to the winners circle.

Jimmy, he mentions EVERY horse. He also talks to 'Mr' Pletcher and 'Mr' Lukas and everyone else in racing like he was REALLY talking to them and worse yet? Like they were actually LISTENING to him.

He has problems with truthfulness and keeping his word. He claims he bet on Calvin every Derby since 2007. BS, he was swooning over Big Brown in 08, cursed a blue streak and called Mine That Bird a fluke, whined about the horse winning the race for a year and NEVER ONCE uttered a word that he bet on Calvin in 09. Fact is he seemed FURIOUS that Calvin won it.

He PROBABLY overheard or read someone say they weren't leaving Calvin off the ticket and monkey see monkey do.

When the guy placed the 100k on SS? It made SS co or 2nd favorite and we ALL know what THAT does to Mr Chalk.

04 May 2010 4:26 PM
jimmy redneck


I guess I did take your advice on something. I looked at your 6 picks and not to my surprise any money bet on any of them would have been wasted. No mention of Borel or Super saver, no mention of Ice Box, even your statement that a wet track only changed the bottom 4 meant nothing. You did not say who the 4 you would substitute if it turned up wet leaving the door wide open to claim you took the right ones after the fact knowing on 4/26 rain was in the forecast. I'm calling you out as full of BS. All your posts prior to the running clearly prove you had no clue. Here is what you said since I am quite sure you don't recall much of what you say minutes after you post it.

"On a dry track I believe these are your top horses. Noble's Promise and LAL Awesome Act, Endorsement, Devil May Care, and Dublin.  A wet track only changes the bottom 4."

draynay 26 Apr 2010 7:35 PM

04 May 2010 4:36 PM

Soldier Course,

The win by General Quarters was wonderful. What a story that is : A man and his horse. Even Hollywood couldn't come up with a better story line.

As far as Super Saver's name goes, the more I think about it the more I like it. I'm sure it has a special significance to the people at WinStar Farm. We just don't know what it is, yet. I know the Super comes from his dam, it's the Saver that doesn't sit quite right.

Let's see, he SAVED Pletcher from hearing another year of 0 for ???.

He SAVED Calvin from going into a deep depression over Rachel's losses. He SAVED WinStar from going home empty handed. They were loaded for bears at the start of the season, only to see their chances reduced in half by the loss of Endorsement to injury (not fatal) and the realization that Rule was not training up to par. I can go on and on with "imaginings" about the word Saver... but I bet you the real reason is going to be much better when we're finally told how they came up with that name.

04 May 2010 5:39 PM

Has anyone heard from STAR SHEBA from the "Morning Line Blog?"  12:16 post.  She may have nailed the Superfecta!!!  Ice Box, Super Saver, Padio, Make Music for Me.  

04 May 2010 5:50 PM

Lucas is great for the media and he likes the attention, that is why Dublin is running in the Preakness.  Let's face it Dublin is what he is.  Give the colt a break and regroup.  I would like to see Dublin and NP got at in the King Bishop or in the fall at Belmont.  We all know that that won't happen as long as the connections continue to run them were they do not belong.  

04 May 2010 5:52 PM

Hey Tim, yeah, I understand that point but I think Todd's the type of person that whenever he wins, he expected it to happen because he works hard and works his staff hard to accomplish that.  So for him, to win any race is just something normal (yes, even the derby.)  He done's so well that he'll probably show more emotional reaction when he loses because that is something he doesn't expect.  I've never met him or won't pretend that I know him but judging from what I've seen of him that's my opinion.  I guess you can call it arrogance but I think it's just him setting that high level for himself because he has accomplished a lot.  One of his first interviews after the derby was something like "the win doesn't necessarily make me a better trainer " and from that I can tell that his attitude is pretty much he doesn't run a race where he contemplates losing too much and to me that's what makes him great.  I don't think his demeanor on camera would attract or detract new gamblers to the game...

Householder : Dublin didn't run his race in the Derby, just like more than half of the horses that ran.  Why do you think Lukas should give the horse a break ?  I think he'll actually make a noise in the preakness and might even win it.  I chose him to play with SS in the preakness because my first choice (IceBox) is most likely going to wait for the Belmont.  LAL will be a new horse if they put Mike Smith on him or even Joel Rosario.  I don't think GoGo will ever get that horse to win.  My other choice is also likely to go to the Belmont, Make Music For Me, and together with IB, I think SS will have to be super to beat them.  I'm still wishing for SS to win the TC though, just because it would be really great to witness a triple crown winner and SS is as deserving as any of the 3 yr olds this year.  

Draynay : Why do you do this to yourself ??  This year you kept bashing Pletcher like he's the worst trainer ever, you almost seem like you despise him, you tell people here that Pletcher doesn't know how to train a derby horse, that his horses DO NOT HAVE A SHOT at winning the derby....then you tell Jimmy that you bet his horse last year too...WHY DID YOU BET HIS HORSE LAST YEAR ???  Borel wasn't on his horse was he ???   This is the kind of thing that makes you look really dumb because you post something definitive then the outcome proves you wrong so you try and make things up to make yourself look credible.  Just stick to your word, admit when you're wrong and people might actually listen to you.  Stop trying so hard to make yourself look like a great handicapper, there's no such thing.  You can read all the workouts, run splits, pedigree, trainer and jockey statistics, the weather but in the end, it also takes some luck and luck is not something you can handicap.  If you haven't learned that by now, then you really should quit betting on horses or at least quit blogging :)

I've never predicted IceBox will win, I've always said that he is who I'm going to bet on.  I was taking my chances on him but in no way I was sure that he'll win but he was the one I thought had the best chance to win.  I considered his pedigree, his running style, his jockey and that's why I stuck with him.  You babbled on here about NP and LAL winning the derby, that they're the only ones to beat, neither of them finished in the money.  You babbled on here that RA will win her two races this year and then have tons of excuses as to why she didn't (I specially like the "they're just waiting for the G1 races".)  You need to learn how to handicap before you start telling the "fandicappers" who the winners are.

Now go on and blog about NP and say "He's got a great chance to win the next leg" and I might just listen to you.

04 May 2010 5:52 PM

NEVERMIND.  STAR SHEBA had the Devil in the fourth spot.  Thanks for playing...Pretty good Trifecta.  Let's us know how it turned out.  

04 May 2010 5:55 PM
Only Backtalk Supporter Left In America


"I think Fozzie Bear's name was changed to Bold Executive.  He's now a sire and has had some good anadian Breds.  LOL"

Thanks for the info, I heard the story in another forum a couple years ago.

04 May 2010 6:00 PM

As this thread is getting somewhat long in the tooth, may I add somethings off thread.  In the loss by RA, I have not seen anyone mention that Unbridled Belle's bottom side is Bertrando.  Now, I know most NYRA handicappers view horse racing much the same as the famous cover which showed the US to be a wasteland west of the Hudson River.  However, Bertrando galloped in the Woodward.  That In Reality and heavy Nasrullah line really kicked in on any off track.  Still remember him galloping away from the field in the San Fernando at SA when the skies opened and all the moisture over California descended in a moment upon the track.

As for Kent D, yes, he did take umbrage at the Japanese officials moving the finish line during the running of the big cup when he rode Kotashaan.  No, it was not his fault he stood up several yards from where those sneaking officials had moved it during the running of the race.  This was on par with Bill Shoemaker misjudging the finish of the Derby, but, Shoemaker handled it with far more clas.

Should there ever be a slow time, could someone run a community blog on both pet peeves of racing fans of draynay types at the track (loud mouthed obnoxious "I'll book your bet" types, especially the ones who crow over having picked any 1-5 and call horses disparaging names, to boot - Plus, the terrible TV coverage of both racing and post parades by the networks and even TVG.  Just love it when I'm looking at horses leaving the paddock of some race track and they put up someone's Pick 3 or Pick 4 selections.  Or NBC not placing their cameras at the entrance to the tunnel under the grandstand at CD where a viewer could observe the colts and fillies coming towards them instead of showing only each horse as a rider mounts and rides off.  This is almost as bad as when ABC showed the post parade of a Preakness from behind the horses, with the logos of each horse superimposed.  Just some peeves and thoughts until the Preakness.  

04 May 2010 6:12 PM

People have commented that Awesome Act was injured in the Derby. I can't find any info on this. Does anybody know something concrete on this?

04 May 2010 6:26 PM


My pet peeve is the amount of time and space dedicated to Draynay and his inane comments, boasts and lies. Enough said!

04 May 2010 6:33 PM
The Rock

Gun Bow,

Love the post about Burt Bacharach. I think I fumbled on his last name, but yes, in the early 90's he had some nice runners. Besides Afternoon Delights and Soul of the Matter, there was the best 3 year old filly in the west. Lakeway. She owned the west coast preps in 94'. I still can't believe she lost the KY Oaks to Sardula.

I have to respectfully disagree on your comment about Ice Box's trip. His trip was horrible. Every lane he ran into was shut off. On the NBC coverage, his head was trashing all over the place. Tom Durkin made the same comment as well. I think the worst of all trips goes to Lookin' at Lucky. He was done from drawing that one post to begin with, and halfway down the stretch the first time he got slammed by some horse who made a bee line to him. Gomez couldn't follow Borel if he wanted too. He ran a hell of a race nonetheless. With that being said, I don't think we'll see as hot of a pace in the Preakness as in the Derby. Don't want to come too far back in that race.


What's the word on Eskendereya? Out for a couple of weeks, months?

04 May 2010 6:45 PM
Karen in Texas

Zookeeper and Soldier Course---I just wanted to say that I suspect it is probably correct that the name Super Saver has more significance than we know. Someone may actually have been quite "inspired" when making that choice. Maybe we should submit the origin of the name to the upcoming Q&A with Elliott Walden.

04 May 2010 6:54 PM
Tim G

Trebloc, I disagree, but then I guess I should.

Also what is the problem with people not being able to spell LuKas? If you're going to critique his training, tell him where to place his horses and pretend like you know more than him please spell his name right.

Wayne gets his share of attention even if it's just to ask about other horses. He's opinionated on a lot of subjects and will discuss them, have no doubt.

He isn't promoting himself, he's set up to have around 60+ horses and thinks that's plenty at this point in his career and life.

We all admit Dublin is a grinder, even Wayne. He doesn't have blazing speed but will just keep coming. The mud took more out of him than hoped so when he went to make his move he was just a bit tired. He was moving up on LAL.

I just don't get why you guys think that a horse is being run in the wrong spot when he finished 2nd or 3rd in some big preps. Not every horse in the race can win it and if not, then hitting the board is a good goal. As long as he's healthy and fit, he's got as much right to be there maybe even more than some of those.

bert, why feel the need to change the direction of a TC blog?

Unbridled Belle??

jayjay, I don't really think the Derby was on the list of 'expected'. If a guy listens to all the stuff being said beforehand, they'll go nuts.

I agree with you on LAL. Think maybe Dublin will just keep grinding away and the Belmont might suit him barring a muddy track. But, that's why they run them. Who knows what will happen.

04 May 2010 7:04 PM
Jason Shandler

Rock: I think we are doing an update on Eskendereya on Wednesday. Look for the story in the morning on

04 May 2010 7:06 PM

jayjay just so EVERYONE doesn't think your a liar show me where I said Pletcher was not a good trainer.

The fact is I called him a VERY GOOD TRAINER.  I said I wouldn't give him my young colt to train for Triple Crown races because NONE of his had won a Triple Crown race.  To be honest I STILL would not give him my young 2 year old colt. But a 4 year old? I wouldn't give him to anyone else.

04 May 2010 7:08 PM

Jason, how soon can we start talking about Quality Road ?

04 May 2010 7:11 PM

Jason, how soon can we start talking about Quality Road ?

draynay 04 May 2010 7:11 PM

Dray,  ain't no need,  Rachel won't be facing him anytime soon,  I can promise you that.  

04 May 2010 7:18 PM
Tim G

You would give him a horse? Hard to do without one isn't it?

I'd say considering he just won the Derby and a big bunch of the preps he does fine with 3 year olds.

Is QR in the Preakness????

ZK it's just hysterical to watch him talk his way into a corner then try to talk his way back out again. His handicapping skills are comic relief, similar to Mike Battaglia, Bob Neumeyer and Hank Goldberg. None of them post on here so he's the one that we like to laugh at.

04 May 2010 7:34 PM


I've been looking and looking, and I still cannot find where you were making any excuse or any cover-up's for the horse's you liked(LAL, NP), like someone on here has.  At least you handicapped the race and the horses the way you felt they might finished, not throwing out other angle's to diminish the handicapping aspect of the horse's race's.

04 May 2010 7:43 PM


A.Act's handlers say his legs and feet are cold but that he is lame. They speculate bone bruising or being body sore. They can't do a scan right at the moment because their is a shortage of dye -- something about the volcano ash in Europe delaying flights.

Btw, he is being transferred to Steve Asmussen.

04 May 2010 7:59 PM

Tim G,

Is Draynay running in the Preakness?

Don't get mad at me now! I'm just teasing you!

04 May 2010 7:59 PM

Tim, you and Jayjay have to learn when it comes to Triple Crown Races I am perhaps the best handicapper in the world.  Kiss the ring.

04 May 2010 8:01 PM

Draynay : Read my post again, I never said you said it :

" This year you kept bashing Pletcher like he's the worst trainer ever, you almost seem like you despise him, you tell people here that Pletcher doesn't know how to train a derby horse, that his horses DO NOT HAVE A SHOT at winning the derby....then you tell Jimmy that you bet his horse last year too...WHY DID YOU BET HIS HORSE LAST YEAR ???  Borel wasn't on his horse was he ??? "

So again, why did you bet his horse last year and this year when you wouldn't give your 2 yr old to him to train for TC if you had one ??  I don't think Borel was the ONLY reason SS won...even Borel admitted it, if SS wasn't trained very well then he probably would've folded right after he passed NP but no, he had a lot left to overcome the track and the long homestretch.  Let's see how you get out of this one ....

If you say it's all Borel that won that derby, you should be banned from blogging lol.

04 May 2010 8:02 PM
Jason Shandler

tcc: Yeah, only horse I liked that hit the board was Paddy. I thought Noble would have the lead turning for home, which he did, but unfortunately he got tired. I thought Willie moved him a bit too soon. LAL was a disappointment. Garrett rode him wrong again, so we'll never know what the horse had.

I just thought the Calvin angle was too predictable. Seemed too easy. Shows what I know.

I'm not going to be a spindoctor like Dray. He has an excuse for everything.

04 May 2010 8:03 PM

Article about Awesome Act's injury (lame) :

04 May 2010 8:15 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

The reason they named him Super Saver is because they knew that Borel would give him a Super ride in The Derby and Save ground on the rail.

04 May 2010 8:15 PM

Draynay: You just have to learn that when it comes to proving you are wrong everyone is the best, kiss everyone's ....

04 May 2010 8:16 PM

My point is simple Borel would have won the Derby on anyone of 6 horses.

I believe the Preakness will prove that and I can see another year where the Derby winner doesn't win another race all year.  Don't laugh I was right last year wasn't I.

04 May 2010 8:23 PM

Tim G,

Lay off Neumy, he's the best.  I like Lucas (lol), but considering Dublin has not won a race since early Sept., I can question if it makes sense running him in the Preakness.  Freshen Dublin up and run him at Saratoga where he looked like a champ.

04 May 2010 8:23 PM
Tim G

Even though we butt heads Jason, you're upfront and honest about your picks. I'd guess on the whole you're about a few million ahead of DRay on the wins. You actually attempt to handicap, not eavesdrop or buckshot pick like Dray.

ZK,no, Dray's relatives are in the mule races on the Cal Fair circuit. He was 0fer 37 so they ruled him off. Sad a J.A. being ruled off the track from J.A. races. I heard he tried to pass for a TB once but the Identifier thought he only resembled a horses r....


My family thought I'd fallen and hurt myself, was rolling on the floor laughing so hard.

Adam spilled the beans on you, said you play strictly the favorites. I really don't like the taste of chalk but I'll kiss your ring when you kiss my patootie. Or when you actually pick ONE horse by yourself, stick with it, its not a favorite and you win something for real.

04 May 2010 8:24 PM
Greg J.


     From Awesome Act's trainer, Jeremy Noseda, "He sustained an injury in the race which is being investigated at present. It was bitterly disappointing to see him run so poorly on the day but  the injury came to light straight after the race.  It is very disappointing but that's racing and we just have to accept it."

04 May 2010 8:24 PM
So Cal Racer

well finally Pletcher won the Ky Derby good for him, as for Super Saver he was just aided by a sloppy track and got loose on the lead..Borail just got lucky..still would prefer Eskenderaya to win the Derby and more..but since Esken is scratch you got Super saver instead..good horse but not the triple crown horse...Pletcher just want to win the "KY Derby", the real KY Derby winner that miss the chance to win will appear on the Preakness and Belmont stakes this is your rightfully triple crown winner..

04 May 2010 8:26 PM

Anyone hear from Joe?  MI cheeleader?  Wait didn't Neumy pick MI?

04 May 2010 8:26 PM

I just have one question for all of the people who think Ice Box was the better horse ... If he was that good, then why is he not proving it at the Preakness?  As of right now, it does not appear that Ice Box will run in the Preakness.  If he was that good, why would the trainer & owners not want to test it again and see if they can beat Super Saver?  Same thing for LAL, for Paddy O'Prado, Make Music For Me or Conveyance.  Would you, if you thought you had the best horse, not go to the Preakness to prove it?  Would it not be better to go to the Preakness than the mile and a half Belmont?  The Preakness is shorter.  To me, it makes it seem like Zito isn't confident that Ice Box could've won had his trip been better.  People thought the same thing last year, that MTB should never have won.  Y'all are forgetting one very important factor: Calvin Borel.  There seems to be no stopping him when it comes to the Kentucky Derby and he has a horse that is very professional and much more mature than most of his crop.  

Unlike Mine That Bird, Super Saver is not a fluke winner.  He is a great Kentucky Derby winner and will go on to win more races this year, including, I believe, the Preakness.  I hope he can do the Belmont and I have no reason to believe that he can't get the distance.  What y'all seem to be forgetting is that he was CO-FAVORITE for most of the betting day.  Everyone at the track seemed to think that LAL and Super Saver were the two horses to beat.  So why in the heck is everyone bashing him for?!?!?

04 May 2010 8:27 PM

Jason, can we not have a deal this year like last year, that if Draynay picks out the winners of a race, he has to go a month without posting???  Pretty please?

04 May 2010 8:28 PM


Thanks for the link to the DRF article about Awesome Act. That will teach me to read an article all the way through, I might learn something!

Dr Drunkinbum,

Beside being a Class Act, WinStar is also Clairvoyant? Amazing! lol!

04 May 2010 8:39 PM

Karen in Texas,

We think alike. I've already submitted the question on the Q&A site. We'll get to the bottom of this one way or another! lol!

04 May 2010 8:48 PM

Lookin at Lucky was back "chillin" with Ice Box and Make Music for Me.  Nice...

What about bringing Sidney's Candy back for the Preakness?  I thought Talamo gave him a great ride breaking from the 20 hole and putting him near the lead.  He just sat too close to the 46 half...saw him backing up at the top of the stretch and probably used a little too much getting to the first turn.  But, he was clear and out of trouble and didn't seem to mind slop.  What if he could get the lead, breaking from the 5 post, in the Preakness and lope along at a 47-48.  Is Hurricane Ike, or any speedsters fast enought to bother him?  I don't think we will be seeing Line of David or Conveyance again any time soon.  

04 May 2010 8:52 PM
Tim G

Trebloc. Dublin got loose a bunch of times at OP. He may be a little too fresh.

He won at Saratoga, then his breathing problems surfaced those two races he didn't run a lick. He was off for a few months then he had 3 races back before the Derby.

This guy is over 16.3 hands and weighs over 1300 lbs. He holds his weight. Why stop and start again after 4 races? That's nothing for a horse like him.  He'll go in the Preakness, then we'll see. He may go in the Belmont if indicators say so and then you can bet he'll be pointed to something in Saratoga, later in the summer.

Neumie and Mr.Chalk? The minute they pick a horse it's lights out.

Hank? I'm not even sure what he's saying most of the time. It's fun watching the DVR of those three.

Sadly, Dray actually believes his high opinion of himself.

04 May 2010 9:08 PM
Paula Higgins

Rechelle, Mine That Bird was not a Derby fluke at all. You must have missed his excellent Preakness race if you think that.

As for Ice Box, he is a very good horse. Zito loves to send his horses to the Belmont and skip the Preakness. Nothing new there.  Furthermore, they often win.

04 May 2010 9:19 PM

congrads to calvin and super saver we all love you calvin you are to greatest jockey in the land glad you won i bet on ; you good luck in the preakness you have brought the sport of kings to the common people

04 May 2010 9:41 PM


Here is a report that was published about Ice Box.

Owner Robert LaPenta said he spent about five hours on Sunday watching the television coverage of Saturday's Kentucky Derby. He came to the same conclusion each time.

"I think we had the best horse in the race,'' said LaPenta, the owner of Ice Box, whose furious late rally through the sloppy Churchill Downs stretch fell 2 1/2 lengths short of Super Saver. "To come up a little short, it's tough.''

That's why LaPenta said he would like to run Ice Box back against Super Saver in the $1 million Preakness Stakes on May 15 at Pimlico. However, Nick Zito, the trainer of Ice Box, indicated that he would be more comfortable skipping the Preakness and pointing to the Belmont Stakes, a race Zito has won twice, including in 2008 with the LaPenta-owned Da' Tara. Zito and LaPenta both said that Jackson Bend, who finished 12th in the Derby, is likely to run back in the Preakness.

Regarding Ice Box, LaPenta said Monday he "wants to think about it for a few more days'' and talk to Zito after the horse goes back to the track.

"He ran so well I think the Preakness would be a nice race for him,'' LaPenta said. "I'd hate to wait to fire that one bullet in the Belmont. A lot of times you don't get that fast of a pace.''

Zito is hesitant to run Ice Box in two weeks because the colt ran so hard in the Kentucky Derby and he wants to have a horse to run in the big races the remainder of they year.

"He's a Pulpit and you worry about his mind,'' Zito said. "We ran twice as hard as the winner. He ran his guts out. I got to focus on the whole year. He could be a serious 3-year-old.''

Ice Box entered the Kentucky Derby off a six-week layoff, since winning the Florida Derby by a nose over Pleasant Prince on March 20. Zito said he had to train the horse hard to get him ready for a peak performance in the Kentucky Derby.

Zito obviously did his job well as Ice Box ran a very strong race under Jose Lezcano. However, Ice Box ran into significant trouble while attempting to rally from next-to-last in the 20-horse field.

Around the far turn, Ice Box was flying, but at the quarter pole he had to steady behind a tiring horse. Lezcano had to take him several paths wide in the stretch and twice had to alter course before finally closing ground while in the seven or eight path.

"He was running twice as fast as anybody else,'' said LaPenta, who added he watched NBC's aerial view countless times. "And I don't think it had to with just the pace.''

Neither Zito nor LaPenta had an issue with Lezcano's ride, and both indicated Lezcano would be back on Ice Box the next time he runs.

"The kid's a cool customer, just racing luck,'' Zito said. "He tried once, it closed. He tried twice, it closed. I would have loved to have seen Ice Box with a clear shot.''

"He was on the rail," LaPenta said. "When he went to make that move outside there was no room to go outside and that's where we lost the race. He knows the horse. I'm satisfied.''

04 May 2010 9:58 PM

Lazmannick, you're unreal.  Rachel didn't win a very close race.  The horse she ran against ran a career best race.  A 103 Beyer is a career best for her and Rachel did run a sub 143.  I expect her next race to be in the 106 to 108 range and who can deal with that?

draynay 04 May 2010 10:42 AM

Gee that's impressive Dray.  If she improves 5 Beyer points every start and she races say five more times before the BCC then she will be coming into the BCC off a 128 Beyer.  Wow.....she's going to scare everyone off.  This will be the first time in the history of the BCC that the race will be a walk-over.

04 May 2010 9:58 PM

Only Backtalk Supporter Left In America

In reference to my post to you regarding Fozzie Bear.......

Now if we can just figure out what a "anadian bred" is we'll be laughing.  LOL

04 May 2010 10:06 PM

Draynay, how about re-posting any of your previous post PRIOR to the derby where you actually picked the winner ?  How can you claim to be the king of triple crown races when you can't even get close to picking who the winner is ??  

And also admit that you played IceBox because you saw me posting him as my horse...just admit it, I promise you it'll make you feel like a man.  No one's going to laugh at you :)

Rechelle : If you read articles about IceBox, Zito said that IceBox was trained pretty hard for the Derby run, he didn't win the derby so there's really no pressure in running in the preakness.  The only pressure now is on SS because he's the only one that has a shot at the TC.  Zito has a great record when running his colts in the Belmont, who would've thought Da Tara...a speedball running away in the Belmont, remember him ?

IceBox is the real deal, if IceBox had a clean run, even if they had gone outside, I'm not sure that SS could've hold him off.  You'll see them again in Belmont so don't worry.

04 May 2010 10:11 PM

2:24, I agree with you about some of these other jockeys. They do OK in a small group of horses but put them in a derby size crowd and they seem to have no nerve or instinct. They can't find a hole unless it opens right in front of them.

Gomez's last two rides on Lookin At Lucky are prime examples. When he got boxed in on the rail Baffert said, well what's he doing over there?! He also missed opportunities to get out of there. This was the race before the Derby.

If I were Lucky I'd run the other way if I saw Gomez coming my way. That's not an exaggeration. I think it was in a book about John E. Madden, back in the old days. A jockey was told not to whip a certain horse but he beat him anyway. The next time the horse saw the jockey on the backside, he made a dash to the jockey who was sitting down and stomped him with his front feet. So Lucky may be feeling a little Gomez phobic. If you see Garrett, tell him to steer clear!

So Congrats to Calvin! He deserves it. He takes the time to get to know the horse. He schooled Super Saver on the rail prior to the Derby. He makes the best of whatever trip he's given and rides every race like it's his last. If he were a pilot I'd say he pushes the envelope.

Oh! You know what the name Super Saver reminds me of? Those trading stamps they used to give at the gas stations and super markets. Super Saver Stamps! You stuck them in a book and traded them in for a coffee pot or a baseball glove or something. It was a bonus gift for your patronage. SUPER SAVER! It's a good thing.

04 May 2010 10:15 PM


Aren't you the one who said bet on Zippy can't lose?

04 May 2010 10:16 PM

Super Saver's name may have come from his bottom line--Numbered Account dam of Private Account.  Supercharger might mean Superspender as in charge cards and Super Saver is the opposite and gives homage to Numbered Account, etc.

Re names that slipped by the Jockey Club:  I recall reading about a horse called Cunning Stunt, might have been in Bloodhorse mag or on line.  

04 May 2010 10:30 PM

Tim, you and Jayjay have to learn when it comes to Triple Crown Races I am perhaps the best handicapper in the world.

draynay 04 May 2010 8:01 PM

Handicapper of what?

1 Horse's

2 Jockey's

Choose only one of these.

04 May 2010 10:31 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Some lunatics escaped from the funny farm and broke into a coffee shop that has wifi and are blogging here !! Alert !! Alert!! "Calling all cars be on the lookout for lunatics who escaped from the asylum and are saying that Mine That Bird's Derby win was a fluke just because he didn't win The Triple Crown." At the donut shop a little while later two cops are talking.

Jim: We rounded them up. They're in the padded rooms now. That one that said Mine That Bird's Derby win was a fluke sure has some claws on her. Hope they clip her nails before she escapes the next time.

Bob: They got some real loonies out there alright. He wins The Derby, then I think he was second in The Preakness and 3rd in The Belmont. That's one tough Bird.

Jim: He'll be back too, and gonna win some races.

Bob: I wonder what they'll say when Super Saver loses The Preakness?

Jim: Yeah, he'll lose by a nostril then they'll call his Derby win a fluke.

Bob: Yeah. Let's get some more of those old fashioned. With the chocolate on top.

Jim: Sprinkles?

Bob: No sprinkles.

04 May 2010 10:39 PM


You may on to something here with the "Saver" part of the name. I think you've got it!!!

04 May 2010 10:44 PM
Tim G

Dr Drunk, stay out of the coffee shops, cut down on the alcohol and caffeine, pronto.

That is my professional opinion.

04 May 2010 10:50 PM

Derby = "America's Greatest Race". Please give me a break. The KD is yet another PR  production for which short-minded American's have no real idea.  Man O' War skipped the stupid race, which comes far too early in the year for 3YO.  The Travers is the race to win with a better list of champions - try Duke of Magenta for one.   Hello Hall of Fame?  Kentucky won the first Travers & he'd have eaten alive Aristides.   The Belmont is 2nd on the list & the Preakness 3rd.   Probably, if not for the idiots running NY State, the Withers would be  4th.  Maybe then the Derby.   Having a bunch of drunks show up to (sort of watch) a race  in Ky. does not cut it in my mind.  History is after all history - pr & Colonel Winn are another.

04 May 2010 10:50 PM
Jason Shandler

I like Chip; got a chance to talk to him after the Derby. He's a classy guy. And I have nothing against MTB. He ran a great race that day, was a deserving winner. But let's be honest, he is winless since that race, and isnt even back racing more than four months into the new year. If he wasn't a fluke, how shall we refer to him? Dont take that the wrong way people. It's not a bad word. It's just an opinion. He's a gutsy horse. He was a nice story. But let's keep it real. If he were to win a couple graded stakes this year I will reconsider my opinion of him. But right now, it's not far-fetched to think the horse ran out of his mind on the most important day in racing and will never repeat that performance. There is nothing wrong with admitting that.

04 May 2010 10:52 PM
Jason Shandler

Leo: Things are gonna be Ok. Just keep up that positive outlook you have on life.

04 May 2010 10:55 PM

jayjay you can see the 6 horses I boxed for the Tri and Super.  Ice Box, Super Saver, Paddy, LAL, Noble, and Dublin. I posted Awesome but changed my mind when Jason told me he looked really tired. And I played Borel every race Saturday like I said I would. I had Noble to win and Borel to win.  Look back on what I posted don't let facts get in your way.

Don't worry about Super winning the Preakness it's not going to happen and the Belmont ? Not even in the realm of possibility.  Ice Box is the real deal ?  No, Ice Box is a closer that could finish on a blazing pace and win.  He will never see that kind of pace again.  Ice Box has about as much chance of winning the Belmont as I do.

04 May 2010 10:56 PM

A customer: Was the one with the fingernails wearing a pink dress?

Jim: Yeah! Awful looking thing!

Bob: Whatever happened to That Bird?

Jim: He's training at high altitude so he can kick the snot out of the nut in the pink dress.

04 May 2010 11:00 PM
Matthew W

When is Churchill Downs gonna pony up 5 mil for Zenyatta/Quality Road in the Foster??!!...When is Hollywood Park gonna pony up 5 mil for Rachel/Zenyatta in the Vanity??!!...that would be a sporting gesture, for Jess--they've lost a little luster, why not go out there to meet the Queen! I for one would bet her on top--she would love Hollywood! 1 1/8 vs fillies would be the best--probably the only way they'll ever beat Zenyatta--less interior fractions--yes, vs fillies, 1 1/8 at Hollywood--I would take the odds on Rachel on for Quality Road/Zenyatta in the Foster, I would put Zen on top--she loves Churchill, and vs Quality she might be 2nd choice--all the better cuz she beats him if there's pace, and there probably will be...think of Big Z getting pace (for once)

04 May 2010 11:01 PM

MTB = never won another race (just like I predicted)

Super Saver = may never win another race

04 May 2010 11:01 PM
Jason Shandler

Matt: It would be a wasted effort. Zenyatta is already going to the Vanity--for the third time. Cant wait to watch that one. Having her beat five mares from Cali again is giving me chills just thinking about it.

04 May 2010 11:05 PM
Dreamer's Mom

Motel Mischief, Paxil, Zipper's Down and Grand Island all run or ran in Nebraska so I'm sure they are on TJC list somewhere.  The colt I was thinking of was known as SC Justice as a two year old, then was sold and his name changed to Shawk an Amaze.  The colt we tried to name as J.R. Pennington was rejected and is now called Pennington J.R-he was accidentally born outside in the pen, but Penn was taken. See, not a real person.  I also know of a Auntie Flo and Miss Permiscuess (spelling on that one probably isn't right). While this has nothing to do with anything really, I just wanted to point out that you can change names and that TJC supposedly has rules, but only when they feel like it! One more for the road-we tried to name a colt Let's Play Doctor.  By Shawklit Player out of Doctor's Choice.  TJC said "no", but when we wrote them a letter they relented.  Unfortunately for us, too late.  He became Doc Shawk instead.  Mare never had another colt so we didn't get to use it!

Officially off the soap-box!

04 May 2010 11:06 PM


Are you still running a fever? I know you've been under the weather.

04 May 2010 11:09 PM
Matthew W

Super Saver, if he comes out all right, will be hard to beat in the Pereakness! His race was superior--he was stalking fast fractions, yet he had a push-button move turning for home, was able to draw off from the speed and hold sway from the closers--he did just that, and make no mistake about it--he did that because he could....

04 May 2010 11:11 PM
Jason Shandler

lol Zookeeper. Did I misspeak about something?

04 May 2010 11:14 PM
Tim G

LOL, DN you thought you were going to get rich winning a Super? MTB earned more than that in ONE race.

Jason, you call him a Derby winner.

Simple as that. Tell me the truth, would you mind having a horse who won the Derby, finished on the board in several other big races including the other TC races and won a couple of million?

I always think of Bob Lewis and Bill Young. Won a lot of big races but their dream was to win the Derby. Grindstone? The Derby was his big race, who knows if he would have done anything. He turned out to be a pretty prolific stud. MTB's crime? Someone gelded him.

Not hard to tell the nutcase DN never owned a race horse.

04 May 2010 11:18 PM
Jason Shandler

Of course I would like that Tim. But Im not taking anything away from the horse or connections. Just calling it what it was: a flukey win. I dont know why that riles people up so much. The Jets Super Bowl in '69 was a fluke. The Mets World Series in '86 was a fluke. Giacomo's win in 2005 was a fluke. Every once in a while these things happen in sports. It's not criminal to admit that.

04 May 2010 11:25 PM

Jason : If not for RA, MTB would've won and beaten the same horses and some fresh ones in the Preakness, and he also beat most of them in the Belmont.  I think it's easy to criticize KD winners as being a fluke when they win but seriously, there's not many Derby winners that went on to win many many races in the past decade.   In fact, I think there's more non-winners of KD that won more races after the derby (Point Given, Afleet Alex, Curlin are some that I can think of).  Most winners are either retired or hurt after the derby.

I posted this awhile back, owners (except for Jackson and the Mosses)  are now more focused in getting that G1 win in the horse then retiring them to breeding.  I believe the industry is actually losing to the breeding part of the sport because very very few owners are willing to run their horse (specially the regally bred ones) after they win or placed in a G1 race.  The future breeding lot of the industry will have very very small running foundation on them because they run fewer than 10 races in their lifetime and then goes to breeding.  Stamina will be gone from these future breeders, and I'm afraid that our future of seeing a great one is all but gone.  I understand it's a big investment they're trying to protect but if you think about it, they're part of the reason of the demise of this industry.

Draynay : Stop avoiding my question, I'll put it in caps so you don't miss it this time...

If you thought that Pletcher doesn't know how to train derby winners (drum roll, here's the question) :

WHY    DID     YOU     BET     HIS   HORSE     IN    LAST      YEAR     AND    THIS     YEAR'S   DERBY ??

Again, you can't say that Borel is the ONLY reason that SS won the Derby because if he was riding a horse that is not trained well, I don't think he would've lasted in the homestretch.  Don't use Borel as an excuse because even Borel said he had the horse under him to win it.  Answer please...

04 May 2010 11:36 PM
Tim G

Dreamers Mom, You can look at the online book, they aren't there.

Actually the one that is, is Motel MisCHEF a 1997 foal.

Unless they fall under the rule of horses that were never used for breeding or racing and whose names may be available for use five years from the date of their death as reported, and the names have been removed?? But I recall it to be much more strict way back in the 60's,70's and 80's to get anything by the JC because not as many foals and no online registry.

Aluminaut, that horse isn't on the JC registry either.

Funny you'd say that DM. I went to grade school with two boys named Pennington. One whose first name began with a J and one whose first name started with a D.

I'm totally serious! Look it up on the People search.

Although Ms Whitney got Luv Guv and Ninth Client by them. Sort of an inside joke though, well until Wayne spilled the beans. Have a hunch she could get by with a lot.

04 May 2010 11:37 PM


I can understand the Cali mares giving you the "shivers". They've been doing pretty good lately, don't you think? Brrrr!

04 May 2010 11:38 PM

Even though I don't think SS can get the Crown, and event though Calvin has said things before that didn't go(we all have) I still have a a great deal of respect for him.

04 May 2010 11:38 PM
Tim G

I won't call it a fluke. If he hadn't come back and given what you and many others considered a super filly, a run for the money after a less than stellar ride by Mike (who I think is great usually)then run a good third with Calvin up deciding he 'knew' the Belmont surface? Then you could call it a flukey win. He won it that's it. He's down in history, he was a fan favorite and got people interested. He had mostly likeable connections and he was good for racing. He was a longshot, he freaked on a certain day, he got the perfect trip. Is he Secretariat, well no, none of them are.

As far as not winning any more G1's? Who knows why a lot of them don't. Too strenuous for a slight gelding like him, running in all 3 TC races? Maybe.

It just irritates me when people can't give credit where credit is due.

04 May 2010 11:49 PM

Draynay :  AGAIN,, pay attention. I asked you to POST any PRIOR blog you have where you said Super Saver is the winner of the Kentucky Derby.  Betting is another thing, but claiming to be the handicapper king of triple crown races means you can pick the winner.



I'm not yelling, I'm just making sure Draynay understands my questions.  Seriously, it's like talking to a 10 yr. old...

04 May 2010 11:52 PM


Calling his win a fluke is one thing... calling the horse a fluke (which has been done ad nauseum) is a completely different thing. THAT's what gets people riled up. What is so difficult to understand? Instead of admiration for his fantastic run in the Derby he was ridiculed repeatedly by too many. He made a lot of money for his connections but for his valiant effort he received NO respect from some on these blogs! It's interesting to note that the same people who did not appreciate him, also fail to appreciate a certain mare who has the gall to reside and race in California!

04 May 2010 11:57 PM


I believe that you bet 100 on Super Saver, but how much did you bet on Noble?...$5000?

05 May 2010 12:03 AM

tcc, Ice Box was never going to catch Super Saver, period.  Of COURSE La Penta is going to say that his horse was the best horse of the race.  ALL owners and trainers will say that, but when it comes right down to it, Super Saver was opening daylight to Ice Box.  Bad race or not, he was not going to win, Super Saver had too much courage and heart.  Courage because he ran in a spot that most horses won't go near.  The mounts that Calvin gets trust him and that is saying a lot.  A horse runs better if they trust the jockey.  And what the heck is it with people???  SUPER SAVER was co-favorite with Looking At Lucky, NOT Ice Box.  Ice Box made his name known after the Florida Derby and people could've chosen him for that, but instead went for 2 more viable options with SS and LAL.  LAL went off at 6-1 and Super Saver at the last minute went down to 7-1.  So bettors knew what it appears that some people don't belive.  Super Saver was NOT a fluke Derby winner.

05 May 2010 12:13 AM

Paula Higgins wrote: "Rechelle, Mine That Bird was not a Derby fluke at all. You must have missed his excellent Preakness race if you think that."

What excellent Preakness race?  He lost.  He never won a race again all season.  The ONLY reasons MTB won last year's Derby was (1) Calvin Borel (2) Better horses either had horrible trips or were scratched (I Want Revenge being the most important scratch) (3) Calvin Borel.  Did I mention Calvin Borel?  I consider a horse that never wins another race to be a fluke winner.  All I saw at the Preakness last year was Rachel not particularly liking the surface at Pimlico (too deep for her) and MTB being beat, same as I saw for every other race he ran in.  Because his owners gelded him, they are going to put that poor horse back into racing and not retire him like he deserves.  I don't understand why they don't just send him to Old Friends or some organization like that.  He may have a lot of heart, but he doesn't have the talent to win stakes races.  It was downright embarrasing by the end of last season that they kept trying to get a repeat of what he did at the Derby.  He got continually worse as the season went on.  Second in the Preakness, third in the Belmont and the West Virginia Derby, and a sad ninth in the Breeders Cup Classic.  To me, that sounds like a horse who does not want to race.  But it appears that his owner & trainer do not have his best interests at heart, just their bank accounts.  They have never made up for what he cost because of the fees to enter the races being as high as they were.  They should NEVER have put him in the Belmont after his loss to Rachel. Maybe if they hadn't run him at the distance of the Belmont, since he was not going to get close to the TC, he might have performed better the rest of the season.  I don't believe he had the breeding or the talent to get the mile and a half race.  I'm not saying I don't like MTB, but he was a fluke winner.  He only got enough graded stakes earnings by finishing first in a couple of Canadian graded stakes, then finishing second in the Borderland Derby and fourth in the Sunland Derby.  He truly did not have another win all season besides the KD. How can anyone not consider that to be a fluke victory?  

05 May 2010 12:26 AM

To the person that said Calvin Borel didn't act the same this year: Mine That Bird was a 50:1 long shot. I'm sure it was a bigger suprise than this year. He had to know he had a better shot this year. He still looked pretty entusiastic to me.

He rode another race after the KY Derby and collapsed in the jockey room afterward because he almost had a heat stroke. I read a story where his wife was saying he thought he was an iron man but he wasn't and wouldn't be doing that again. She was making noises like she would see he took better care of himself. His agent told him to stay home to get some rest and take care of his health.

05 May 2010 12:28 AM

Matthew W wrote: "When is Hollywood Park gonna pony up 5 mil for Rachel/Zenyatta in the Vanity??!!..."

Rachel will never run on a synthetic track ever and I can't say I blame Jess for that.  I still suspect Curlin came out of the BCC injured, but they kept it quiet.  Regardless, there is no reason why Rachel should have to travel to California anyways.  If Zenyatta is going to run on dirt in the Breeders Cup this year, she needs to come out of Cali and meet Rachel somewhere central.  Say Churchill Downs?  Or ship her to Saratoga or Belmont Park, since Belmont has offered to not use the detention barn if Zenyatta comes.  I can't blame the Mosses for not wanting her in a detention barn. Giacomo went nuts in the detention barn when he was there for the Belmont.  Heck, Big Brown kinda went a little nuts when he was in there (remember him kicking up towards his exercise rider?)   But there is absolutely NO reason why Zenyatta can't travel out of Cali to prep for the Derby.  Otherwise, in Cali, she is just beating up on the same horses over & over & over ... Get some fresh horses to race against.  

05 May 2010 12:34 AM
Only Backtalk Supporter Left In America

Re: Awesome Act and his nuclear scintigraphy scan -

I work in nuclear medicine, and there has been a shortage of the "dye" (actually it's technetium, a radioactive tracer, not a dye) since the middle of March. Apparently the powers that be shut down all of the reactors that make it at the same time, I'm not sure of the reasoning behind that decision, but it happened and we have been dealing with it for a month and a half. They were just bringing the reactors back online and ramping up production again when the Iceland volcane erupted, which grounded planes in Europe and disrupted delivery of the radioactive product to the U.S. I'm sure that the small amount that is available is being prioritized to Human patients first, hopefully Awseome Act will be able to have his scan soon.

I would LOVE to do equine nuclear medicine!

05 May 2010 12:50 AM
Only Backtalk Supporter Left In America

Now if we can just figure out what a "anadian bred" is we'll be laughing.  LOL

It's ok, Lazmannick - I'm fluent in typo! :)

05 May 2010 1:01 AM

Mike Relva self-imposed ban.

For the record......Mike Relva's self imposed ban from this blog was for three months, not six months.  I'm sure he will be back alive and well at 12:01 a.m. on August first.  In the meantime he's still blogging on Steve Hasskin's blog.....LOL MIke.

05 May 2010 1:28 AM
Dr Drunkinbum


   Good points.


    Rachel is winless since what race? I guess last year was a fluke. The Great Mine That Bird had a taxing campaign. Wait until he's back a few races before you call his Derby win a fluke. Underrated vs overrated does not equate to a fluke. High odds do not equal fluke. Half of the time odds makers don't know what they're talking about. The Jets in 69 were underrated and the Colts were overrated. The 1986 Series was an amazing comeback and a Boston choke. The fluke was Borel not winning The Derby in 2008. How did that happen? Jason-Let yourself enjoy the thrill of great victories, and don't be influenced so much by odds and point spreads which are often just a bad guess. I hope you feel better soon. I hope the fever subsides. Have a donut.

05 May 2010 2:36 AM
Dr Drunkinbum

Some Derby Jockeys prefaced by-I think a jockeys job is the toughest in sports. I also think they are some of the bravest and greatest athletes in sports.

Borel-Brilliant, perfect ride. A Super ride.

Desormeaux-Needs a new excuse like-"I lost because my ride stunk."

Rosario- A very good jockey and a probable future great jockey.

Gomez-He and Lucky are trouble with a capital T. Like fire and water they don't mix. Jockey change needed for Lucky??? I would, even though Gomez is a very good jockey. I think Lucky is a little too freaked out by all of the trouble and wants a divorce.

Thompson-Glad he had the mount. 7th was good for Dublin in this race.

A Garcia and R Maragh-Two jockeys I like that I think will get better and better.

Talamo-Bad ride, great kid. Would have loved to see him take it slower and give Sidney's some kind of a chance. He had no chance at that pace.

Velazquez-One of the country's best on dirt. I feel bad for him. Pletcher go to guy not on the winner, but Super Saver probably doesn't win with anyone but Borel.

Bejarano-Got the mount over Jon Court who rode Line Of David superbly in the Grade One Arkansas Derby. They take Court off of a well deserved mount so Bejarano could expertly guide Line Of David to a brilliant 18th place finish.

05 May 2010 2:57 AM
Dr Drunkinbum

It's a shame that there can't be Oaks and Derby telecasts for horse racing fans, and another for cooking show and celebrity fans.

Zookeeper-Were you at the coffee shop too !!!!???

2010 Breeder's Cup Classic Possible Entrants-Rachel, Zenyatta, Quality Road, Super Saver, Pleasant Prince, Setsuko, Lookin At Lucky??, General Quarters, Ice Box. I know I'm missing some but it's time for bed. The Travers will be huge this year.

05 May 2010 3:24 AM
Gary Lynn

Bold Executives indeed worth a good look at Woodbine.

05 May 2010 5:23 AM
Gary Lynn

Zookeeper...It's just that dreadneigh's like that annoying, outhouse fly, that you must keep swatting at, but can't seem to kill. It will take the blogmasters to do that. Everyone knows his game. Perhaps we all should begin to boycott him response-wise but for the first person that gets to post,"what's that smell"? Make it a game. Keep a running total of "first to POST" bloggers.

05 May 2010 5:39 AM
Gary Lynn

If RA doesn't win this year, guess '09 was a fluke season.

05 May 2010 6:00 AM

I see more and more of you are waking up to see who Mr. BS aka draynay really is. Everytime he throws out many different ridiculous claims and if only one of the dozens he spews comes true he tries to claim he told you so. That is the work of a very disturbed man (if he's even really a man). If you throw enough darts you are bound to hit the board sometime. The thing I find most hilarious is it takes him alot more darts than even the average handicapper to hit the bullseye.

Congrats to those of you who picked and bet on the winner at the window and not just in your own fantasy like Mr BS.

05 May 2010 7:45 AM

 "You babbled on here that RA will win her two races this year and then have tons of excuses as to why she didn't (I specially like the "they're just waiting for the G1 races".)  You need to learn how to handicap before you start telling the "fandicappers" who the winners are."

jayjay 04 May 2010 5:52 PM


nay nay is the one who babbled on and on and on  last year and into this year that RA was going to go undefeated all of 2010 and break the record for consecutive wins. No mention that she would lose a race or just wait for G1 races to show up and win. The guy is ridiculous, he throws out claim after claim and if one comes true pretends it is the only one he made and he's never wrong. Sounds like a freak show to me.

05 May 2010 9:29 AM

@Tim G, I wasn't trying to change the direction of this thread.  I did ask, if, in the future two different threads could be written.  But, one of them did concern the Triple Crown. I am a die hard looks player.  I learned this before I ever heard of Bonnie Ledbetter and her DVD with McCarron on picking horses by looks.  So, unless I am at the track, I am dependent on the camera person and the producer of the televised viewing to show me the horses, either in the paddock or on the track.  The networks are the worst at showing horses for bettors.  They, merely, want to put on a show for a wide audience.  Therefore, the cooking demonstrations and background stories prevail.  While they were showing these, there was live racing being conducted at CD, which they never showed.  Geez, why would they want anyone to know how the track was playing?  Why would they want anyone to know what had happened earlier on the card?  Once, NBC took over, TVG could not show any of the CD races.  The networks are pathetic in showing any TC race.

I mentioned the ride by Kent D because he had been criticized for his ride on Paddy.  This is not the first time Kent has ridden poorly.

My mentioning Bertrando was because he throws speed and stamina for off tracks and many Eastern posters write off most California sires and runners. Plus, while this is a TC thread, several posters had mentioned the loss by RA, the day before.

05 May 2010 10:12 AM


It seems to me that Zenyatta is the one with an untarnished reputation.  You still act like Rachel is the ONE.  Zen doesn't have to prove anything, Rachel does.  It shows what a trumped up season she had when she barely beat MTB, Munnings and those other distance challenged horses can't seem to win a race, and those stalwart G-1 older males she beat last year are now pulling up the back opositions in G-3 races.  If Rachel wants to prove something she should go where the Great Mare is, not visa versa.  Also that bit about Curlin being injured seems a little over the top.

05 May 2010 11:05 AM

Rechelle,  considering Ra ain't beating up anybody right now, I wouldnt be complaining about who Zenyatta is beating up on, At least she can beat grade 3 stringers , Ra hasn't been able to.  Furthermore, Its time for Ra to chase down Zenyatta , she is the one that chickened out of the race that Zenyatta flew here to race her in.

It's not Zenyatta's fault no one dares to take her on, not even the 2009 HOTY,  Blame JJ for her problems.  Don't blame Zenyatta for winning her first two races,  Its not her fault she belongs to caring and loving owners that love her and manage her correctly, not like the 2009 HOTY owner and trainer, that treat her like a machine.........

I have a suggestion,  maybe it's time to call Sherriffs and see if he can train RA on synthetics, maybe she can improve on them, she won on them before.........

Lets send her to Zenyatta's 'Happy Barn' like Zenyatta so they can both 'Be HAPPY'  

05 May 2010 11:14 AM
EL Kabong


Super Saver may never win another race? Well when he does, I'm sure you'll be comfortable telling us all you had another C-Note on him, won't you. Better start super saving so you have one.

05 May 2010 11:24 AM
Tim G

Rechelle, easy to tell you've never been an owner or maybe never even near a race track.

Like I said there can be only ONE winner. Lots of times we go into a race knowing we're probably running for second but hoping we can pull off the win. Running second in a TC race is nothing to sneeze at, neither is running third.

MTB became a fan favorite. People wore cowboy hats when he showed up at a track, to show their support. You talk about Zenyatta not going anywhere and Rachel running at all these different tracks yet say MTB should have done what? WV gave those fans a chance to see a Derby winner. Actually that race has had a lot of owners and trainers target it.  It isn't ALL about making money but at some point, as expensive at upper level racing is a guy has to try to make SOME of their investment back if only to keep going and providing these horses you fans all love to see run. Maybe you should take Drunk and ZK's place at the coffee shop. Get a little mood booster or get the sour taste out?

Drunk, (I can call you by your first name, right?)  you made a lot of sense with your jock analysis and your other posts. My suggestion to switch to decaf must have helped?

Although on the TV broadcast, the TV shares were really high this year. That helps some, but like Dan said on his blog, something else has to give to help the game.

slyder, saddest thing about it is, yes Drayton is actually a middle aged man.

05 May 2010 11:25 AM

Jason- I second the idea of having an ongoing blog about Zenyatta and Rachel Alexandra.  I just don't feel like blogging about them on a TC blog.

Bert- I'm not sure how much stamina Bertrando imparts, but he did run well on off tracks.

05 May 2010 11:28 AM
Dr Drunkinbum


  Excellent post 5-5-10, 10:12am. NBC's presentation of The Derby is horrific, and doesn't do a thing to bring new bettors into the game. Having a monopoly doesn't do anything for racing. The casual fan and partygoer will still tune in to NBC but why take the simulcasts away from online sites and TVG and HRTV? I couldn't even watch and bet on the race prior to The Derby!! Most races I'm not going to bet without seeing the horses. It's always nice to hear from a physicality guy like you. People say-"How did he win, I don't see a thing in the past performances."  I say-"Didn't you see what he looked like before the race? He was ready for the race of his life !!" Many of Kent D.'s rides this year have been poor, usually from running the horse into unnecessary trouble or very poorly timed moves but what I'm really tired of is the excuses.

05 May 2010 11:32 AM


Until JASON declares that we can only post about the TC, this forum seems to be open to all things related to horse racing... and on occasion, to just about anything!

Dr Drunkinbum,

Didn't you see me?

05 May 2010 11:39 AM

Thanks, Dr Drunkinbum - Yes, the looks angle has given me long shots that were hard to glean from the PPs.  It can be deceptive at times, when, owner/trainers run a horse too far over its head in the fear that someone might claim them, ala that Yellow Page ad of a few years back about the guy who had one rug.  "But, someone might buy it".  But, looks will give you the "Now" horse, who is fit and primed for that particular day and race.  In a book of a few years back about the new crop of experts at the track, there was a section on a top handicapper from the Philadelphia circuit, who made his living on looks.  Some of my finest moments have been walking with my winning "looks" ticket to the pay off windows as I hear "But, he (or she) didn't have the numbers". But, such as thrill goes through me when I see any horse in the walking ring, in the post parade or approaching the gate with ears pricked forward and that sheen and look and acts of confidence in the stride - And - then, I see the high odds.  Really fun at times from Longacres, Remington Park, Ak-Sar-Ben, Emerald, the Bay and So-Cal racing.  My dream is for my wife to retire next year and be able to move from Portland to Louisville or Lexington and spend our remaining years hanging with the hoi polloi at the rail of the Kentucky circuit with my Swarovskis working over time.  Better days.

05 May 2010 11:58 AM
Karen in Texas

I was skimming the comments this morning and noticed someone wrote that MTB did not have the breeding to win a mile and a half race. Then what distance was the Belmont Stakes in 2004 when Birdstone beat Smarty?

05 May 2010 12:06 PM

"If Zenyatta is going to run on dirt in the Breeders Cup this year, she needs to come out of Cali and meet Rachel somewhere central."

Rechelle 05 May 2010 12:34 AM

rechelle where have you been? She did come to the midwest and Rachael ducked her again just like she did all last year.

05 May 2010 12:47 PM

Dr Drunkinbum,

I don't think you'll be seeing General Quarters in the 2010 Breeder's Cup Classic. His owner/trainer Tom McCarthy has switched him to turf races and he just won the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic on the Derby undercard. I do expect you'll see him in one of the Breeders Cup grass races this year.

05 May 2010 12:51 PM

It seems to me that Zenyatta is the one with an untarnished reputation.  You still act like Rachel is the ONE.  Zen doesn't have to prove anything, Rachel does.  It shows what a trumped up season she had when she barely beat MTB, Munnings and those other distance challenged horses can't seem to win a race, and those stalwart G-1 older males she beat last year are now pulling up the back opositions in G-3 races.  If Rachel wants to prove something she should go where the Great Mare is, not visa versa.  Also that bit about Curlin being injured seems a little over the top.

LAZMANNICK 05 May 2010 11:05 AM


AMEN to that!!!! If it were the other way around and Zenyatta had lost 2 straight in G2 races we all know what kind of crap Mr BS ( I like it slyder it fits nay nay perfectly) and his sidekick wretchelle would be spewing.

05 May 2010 12:53 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


  That's my dream !!!! I was just looking at Lexington rentals last night !!!! Keep me posted if you move. I'd love to go to the track with you. Did you notice how good Keeneland's simulcast was this year? Fantastic. Got a real good look at the horses. I plan on going all out online this fall with Keeneland, then hoping to go there next spring. Do you remember the jockey Vicky Aragon? The best times to see a horse is on the way to the paddock, in the paddock, the walking ring, and prior to the gate. I don't have as much faith in the post parade. I caught a glimpse of Mine That Bird online prior to the paddock last year and said "wow, he is ready to run!!!" He was the best looking horse that day. Da Tara was the best looking horse Belmont 2008. Often the only way to hit an exacta or tri is to throw in that great looking one that it is impossible to see on paper. But it can be tricky and you have to have discipline. It's a fine line between great looking ready to win, horses that are realy good looking but not quite there.

05 May 2010 12:54 PM
glen beck

I work in nuclear medicine, and there has been a shortage of the "dye" (actually it's technetium, a radioactive tracer, not a dye) since the middle of March. Apparently the powers that be shut down all of the reactors that make it at the same time, I'm not sure of the reasoning behind that decision, but it happened and we have been dealing with it for a month and a half. They were just bringing the reactors back online and ramping up production again when the Iceland volcane erupted, which grounded planes in Europe and disrupted delivery of the radioactive product to the U.S.

Only Backtalk Supporter Left In America 05 May 2010 12:50 AM

Blame it on Unions Backtalk. It works for me!!

05 May 2010 1:22 PM
joe schmoe

Don't laugh I was right last year wasn't I.

draynay 04 May 2010 8:23 PM

The answer is no unless you count the times you chose the favorite along with the rest of the world. The other times you had no clue.

05 May 2010 1:25 PM

NBC can't get their prime time programing right.  Why should we expect them to get a TV telecast right?

05 May 2010 1:31 PM

May I remind you he hit the board on Denis of Cork.  Denis of Cork ! Geez.

draynay 03 May 2010 3:58 PM

Denis Of Cork was a huge part of the Superfecta I hit that year in the Derby(58K). I guess it shouldn't surprise me that you draynay couldn't handicap well enough to see that one. A real handicapper can find the hidden gems to round out the big payoffs not just throw out every name in the race then claim they picked the winner after the fact.

05 May 2010 1:36 PM

I just don't think Rachel is going to be winning any big name races this year.  I think that what you see with her now is going to be all you are going to get.

From here on out, If she is running like this with all the 'bullet works' and training 'crazy goods' and she can't fire enough to beat these grade 3 horses, what the heck is she gonna do with the grade 1' horses out there, Not just the Mighty mare either.   I guess Careless Jewel would have swallowed her and UB had she ran.

I'm sorry, but with the weights and the distances, how is things going to get better for her.

And she hasn't even faced the grade 1 horses yet.  I think we seen the best of her last year.

05 May 2010 2:22 PM

Thanks, Dr D, that would be fun.  I'll let you know.

Vicky Aragon?  Look at the the PPs of Atta Boy Roy and notice Vicky Baze rode him at TP in his race before CD.  Vicky Aragon married Gary Baze and rides under Vicky Baze.  Yes, I remember her as a very strong willed jockey at Longacres.  She clubbed a fellow jockey over his head at the head of the lane when he tried to cut her off.  In addtion, she refused to accept the advice of Julie Krone to move her tack to Maryland.  Ms Krone thought female jockeys were given a better chance on that circuit.  She was, also, engaged to Joe Steiner, who rode Saratoga Passage to victory in the Norfolk at SA and later, rode Irish O'Brien and Kangaroo Court for Longden.  It was the close of KC against a heavily favored Sandy Hawley mount which knocked many out of the Pick 6 and one of the only races Trevor Denham has ever mis-called.  He was waxing poetically about those holding tickets going to the pay off queue, when, whoosh, Joey and KC swept past to win.  Yeah, I do remember Mrs Baze nee Aragon.  One of my fine memories was talking with Joe Steiner and telling him I had enjoyed those rides on Irish O'Brien, but, I thought she had been destroyed in a spill at SA.  He lit up and told me she had recovered and dropped a foal from Interco which turned out to be a champion Grade I winner.  Some things are even better than winning at the race track.

05 May 2010 2:56 PM
Gary Lynn

Super Saver was opening daylight to Ice Box? What race were you watching Rechelle?

05 May 2010 3:03 PM
Gary Lynn

Super Saver "might" not win The Preakness; conversely, he might win the race, eh, neigh.  That's called leaving the barndoor open, yes, no? Sophistry run in the family?

05 May 2010 3:10 PM

Why would Zenyatta travel anywhere to meet a horse that is 0-2 this year?  If the HOY was given out today would Zen not be a clear front runner?  They will prep her at home where she wakes up, eats some oats, and then wins yet another Grade 1 (yawn).  When the time is right they will take on their main competition for HOY. But it won't be RA.  Look for a light racing schedule (keeping her off Del Mar) leading up to the Breeder's Cup.  

I enjoyed Hollendorfer's response after the Kentucky Oaks regarding bringing Blind Luck back for the Preakness.  "It's too soon!"  Now there is a man who knows horses.  Not some rich guy who purchased "a dream" to burn at both ends!  

I feel bad for RA. The connections completely ran her into the ground!  

05 May 2010 3:13 PM


A great dance band....Gretchelle and the Nay Nays.....LOL

05 May 2010 3:15 PM
Dreamer's Mom

Tim G,, about the registry, online names book-Paxil, in there, Grand Island, in there, Motel Mischef(I spelled it wrong, so shoot me!) Zippers Down-not in there so must be another spelling issue because I know the owner/breeder/trainer and have seen the horse run.  

05 May 2010 3:22 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


  You're probably right. General Q always had a turf action anyway. It's just that some versatile horses go with The Classic for more prestige and money.

Zookeeper-Somehow I missed you at The Coffee Shop. Probably had my face buried in a Bearclaw, or an Apple Fritter. We might get some Covered Wagons and head East to Kentucky someday to go to the track everyday. I don't know if you'd join us since you have SA but you might want to consider it. We're going to win some big races, pool our money and buy a horse for The Derby, and win The Triple Crown.

05 May 2010 3:50 PM

LAZ : That's what I said to Draynay before, why is RA so scared to race on plastic??? If she's really a super horse, then there's really no reason to worry about the surface.  If a regular horse like Zenyatta can win on both surfaces then there's no reason that RA can't win on it.  After all, she's a super horse.

Dr. Drunkinbum : I too was really pissed when they took Court off of Line Of David, I thought Jon handled the horse very well in the AD and they should've let him keep the mount but I guess it's a "team" thing.  I like Jon Court, he's a good man and when he's on a good horse, he knows how to win.

Jason : After an 8 month layoff, how long do you think it takes for a trainer to get a horse 100% ready in general?  I'm just curious...

05 May 2010 4:51 PM

Dr Drunkinbum,

Apple fritter indeed! More likely, it was the fingernails and the pink dress that had you mesmerized!

As far as Kentucky goes, my bags are packed... when are we leaving? Will there be room in the wagon for Santa Anita? 'cause I'm not leaving behind!

05 May 2010 5:07 PM

Rechelle : I'm seriously asking what RA has done this year that makes you think she'll be in the classics ??  I'll bet that Jackson is not even considering that right now.  She is so far off that they're probably trying to figure out finding a much much lighter race for her just so she can win...maybe an ungraded stakes right now.  She is NOT the same horse as last year, stop trying to compare her to Zenyatta.  Zenyatta has not missed a beat since winning the Classics last year, she seems to just gotten better.  You won't see Jackson run her against Zenyatta or any of the top 3 in her division right now because they don't want to see an 0-3 this year.  They'll find the softest spot for her just to see a win.  Again, I'll say it...I'll go as far as saying that she'll never win a race again, that is if she ever runs again.  I think we're close to seeing her being retired.  RA reminds me of Stardom Bound (I know I've already said that.)  I'm hoping I'm wrong though cause I'd love to see an RA / Zenyatta race.

05 May 2010 5:11 PM


A great dance band....Gretchelle and the Nay Nays.....LOL

LAZMANNICK 05 May 2010 3:15 PM


I said Wretchelle but I agree that or gretchelle and the nay nay's sounds like a great name for a grunge band.

05 May 2010 5:27 PM

Sooner or later Polyetta will have to leave California and run against the big boys on dirt.  When she does she will lose.  You think they have been avoiding it for nothing ? They know Polyetta can't beat the best on dirt.  Do you honestly think she will take on boys BEFORE the BC? Not in a million years.  They will take the easy route and pray for the best come November.  The horse can't break 100 Beyer on dirt and that is a fact.

05 May 2010 5:29 PM

Wiz and jayjay you couldn't handicap your way out of wet paper bag. Leave it to the experts like me.

05 May 2010 5:32 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


  WOW. Thanks for catching me up on all of that news. I used to watch her at GG Fields and always wondered what happened to her. I believe she was an apprentice then. 1986.

05 May 2010 5:45 PM
El Kabong

Rechelle, Tim, Paula

I'm in the camp that does not believe MTB was a Fluke. He was the best horse that day, last may and there's plenty of film to prove it. Matter of fact, he beat all of those horses who dared to run against him again in the Preakness. He lost, barely, to the HOY by a length in a thrilling race, without his #1 rider(no offense to Mike, he's an outstanding rider...but it was Calvin who rode him best). If he had washed up in the Preakness and Belmont you may have had a leg to stand on but to finish on the board in all three triple crown races is a grueling accomplishment that no other horse can claim that year and firm evidence that he was no fluke. Tired by years end. Oh yes. But not a fluke. I can't wait to see him run again, he's a tough competitor and a recognized Canadian and American Champion, by most in the industry.

05 May 2010 6:45 PM
Pedigree Shelly

      Speaking about 2yr old name changes , I'm pretty sure Smarty Jones started out with the name " Get Along "from his dam " I'll Get Along " Until his owner Pat Chapman decided to use her childhood nickname!

05 May 2010 7:00 PM
Ida Lee

Wow,where do I start? I've very much enjoyed reading your article as I always do and, of course, the comments are sometimes very informative and insightful, and sometimes out-of-this world weird. I congratulate Todd Pletcher for winning the Derby. I have a warm spot in my heart for him as the Trainer of Super Filly Rags to Riches whose Belmont win over my beloved Curlin was one of the great races of all time and literally got me out of bed after major surgery, holding a pillow to my stomach while I screamed my head off. As for Calvin, he is a sweetheart. I love his simplicity and, of course, he is my Queen Rachel's jockey. I know he's hurt because of her losses. I am too. But I also know that during her break from training, she has grown and gained weight. Last year, she was a girl; this year she's a woman. She just needs more time. I'll wait for my Queen until she's ready. But, if JJ takes Calvin off Rachel, I'm going to have a royal snit. Calvin adores Rachel and together they have given us thrill after thrill we won't soon forget. Now, let's forget the Derby and concentrate on the Preakness. How about Caracortado, or as I like to lovingly call him, Scarface? He's beautiful and talented and I think he's taking the Preakness. If not him, then I'm with Paddy O'Prado.  Although I do love Lucky and Lord knows he's due to get a break and then of course there's Dublin and never mind. I have no idea who's going to win. I'm not even going to think Triple Crown either. Big Brown killed all my hopes of seeing another Triple Crown winner in my lifetime.  

05 May 2010 7:12 PM

Paula H.

Thanks for your comments.  I will tell my son.  As for ICE BOX, you're spot on!

05 May 2010 7:23 PM


I said it before.  CD should write a special race for Rachel and all the G-1 males she defeated last year that can't seem to win a race this year.  They could call it the Summer Classic.  If they did and if they applied for and received G-1 status, then at least one of them could say that they won a G-1 race this year.  LOL

05 May 2010 7:44 PM

Nice to see Mr. Zito opt out of the Preakness with Ice Box.  Ice Box will be tough in the Belmont.  

05 May 2010 7:51 PM

"LAZ : That's what I said to Draynay before, why is RA so scared to race on plastic???"


She isn't. Her owner was. However, I suspect his refusal to let her compete there...and use her up in the Woodward instead...might have been because the BC Classic is 1-1/4 miles.

As a 2-year-old, she won a race on the Polytrack at Keeneland. In light of that fact, I think it's a little odd to say she couldn't have handled the Pro-Ride at Santa Anita.

05 May 2010 7:58 PM
Paula Higgins

Thank you Tim for stating the obvious to Rechelle, who apparently doesn't get the concept of running a great race but not winning. Mine That Bird ran beautifully in the Preakness Rechelle. No, he didn't win, but he was impressive nonetheless. Just like Presious Passion coming in second in the Breeders Cup Turf. It isn't always about winning Rechelle. If you cannot appreciate the other horses and the efforts they make, well, I wonder why you watch racing. For example, I think Rachel Alexandra's gutsy efforts in her last two races were impressive. She never stops trying. No, she didn't win them but she ran her heart out. You have to love that in any horse.

05 May 2010 8:26 PM

This just in: a coterie of industry bigwigs (the biggest) have decided that if Super Saver wins the Preakness, a field limited to the nation's top quarter horses will face him in the Belmont; there WILL be a Triple Crown winning jockey this year. The winning margin should easily eclipse the current Belmont record set by Ron Turcote, riding a red horse.

And now this: Winstar Farm has announced a deal with North America's premier jocky, Calvin Borel, which gives the future HOF rider an executive position and permanent residence (and a lovely one it will be) at the farm, for him and his family after retirement from racing.

It is expected that the number of people visiting Winstar each year, to see Calvin, should far exceed the numbers Claiborne Farm recorded for that red horse, who couldn't even speak English. Calvin already speaks some English, and that is sure to improve after the next eight-hundred interviews he gives for winning the TC. The winning horse is to be auctioned off on E-Bay, together with the saddle, bridle, and grain bucket Calvin is purported to have touched, on his way to victory.

05 May 2010 10:59 PM

CV : Yes, I knew it was Jackson and I don't believe that they were afraid of synthetics because of risk of injury to RA but then again, I'm not the owner.  I respect Jackson for not retiring his horses after they accomplish a lot, it's great for horse racing but as many have mentioned here, it is looking more and more that they pretty much ran RA to the ground and there's not much left in her.  I don't mind if he retires her before she sets a record by running 0 for ## this year, that would nullify the HOTY honors she got last year.

Draynay : LOL, you're a joke, you know it.   You kept avoiding my question because you have no idea to handicap so you come online and look for blogs like this to help you pick a winner.  I'm fairly new to this blog and I posted a winning pick for the derby try wayyyyy before the derby.  You've picked all but 3 horses in the derby as your "winner" lol.

My advice, you should quit betting, you can continue to try and convince everyone in this blog that you pick the winner.  The rest of us will cash tickets then come online and poke fun at your "skills." LOL

05 May 2010 11:03 PM

I agree trebloc, LaPenta actually wanted to run him but I was praying that Zito would get his way.  I don't think IceBox needs a sizzling pace to run at, I think he can actually run closer that his normal run from the clouds style.  I truly believe IceBox is pretty much the only horse that can stop SS from winning the triple crown but if he doesn't, it'll be great to see a TC winner.

LAZ : She will probably run in an ungraded race and will come in 2nd again and Jackson will wait some time (maybe a month or so) and announce that RA has been retired.

Draynay :  You're right, you're the expert.  Just one more question, what's the color of the sky in your world ?  Ok...back to my wet paper bag :)

05 May 2010 11:32 PM

sodapopkid, I have nothing against Zenyatta.  But the fact is, this year's Breeders Cup is on the dirt.  Knowing that, why are they training Zenyatta on synthetic, when the biggest jewel of racing is on the dirt?  It makes no sense to me.  I'm sure Shirreff's has a reason, but to me, it just doesn't make sense.  Especially when Zenyatta has only run on dirt twice.  Synthetics run more towards turf than they do dirt.  Regardless of how great her dirt race this year was, she faced a lackluster group of mares that she could run circles around and still win.  My opinion on Rachel is that she had too long a layoff and isn't at her best yet.  I do not have any doubt that Rachel will win races this year, but they let her be a horse too long at the ranch instead of at least galloping her out on a track several times.  Why they took her to Louisiana instead of Churchill is completely beyond me.  Churchill is her home track, not Louisiana.  She faced too much inclement weather over the winter, since it was an especially brutal winner here in the south and southwest.  Colder than normal with longer than normal cold spells and wetter than usual.  Houston had snow for crying out loud, they never get enough snow to do any sledding and this year they did.  It's not an excuse for Rachel, it's simply a fact.  Jess Jackson & Asmussen raced her too soon as was evidenced in her first race, but she is improving.  Whether Rachel returns to her previous form is yet to be seen.  At least she is running better than Stardom Bound did after her long layoff and Proud Spell after HER long layoff was retired.  IMO racehorses should never be left to be simply a horse when they are bred & trained to be racehorses.  JJ and Asmussen made a HUGE mistake, for which they are now facing the consequences.  

05 May 2010 11:39 PM
Paula Higgins

El Kabong you are so right.

05 May 2010 11:45 PM

Lazzmannik, to go off topic, the reason I believe Curlin was injured is (1) how badly he ran in the BCC when he had been training well enough that Jackson went ahead & entered him, despite what he thought of synthics and (2) for how long it took them to annouce his retirement.  It was at least a month later, long enough to see if an injury would heal.  Before that Jackson had been talking about how it was too late in the year to retire him and he wouldn't get top mares the first year (obviously proved false).  To me, that spells injury.  Yes Jackson often goes back on what he says or contradicts himself, but this one was just a little more over the top than usual.  What is normal for him is saying No to the Apple Blossom then when it's moved a week later, saying Yes to it.  But he didn't ever do that with Curlin who was his star.  

05 May 2010 11:47 PM

Tim G: Actually I have trained thoroughbreds back in Alberta & Saskatchewan that went on to be racehorses in Edmonton.  I worked them from the time they were born until the time they went to the track and under whoever their new trainer was.  So yes, I know horses, I have been around them for 36 years (since I was born).  

MTB never won a stakes race to get into the Derby.  He was a length behind Rachel in the Preakness, so he ran a great race, but didn't finish first.  By the Belmont, to give him credit, he was a very tired horse and should've been given a break and not raced there, since he was out of a chance for the Triple Crown.  He was never the same horse after the Preakness and his connections often chose races that were going to be easier company than the Travers, the Woodward or the Jockey Club.  His only next big race against classy competition was the Breeders Cup, which I think they shouldn't have entered, just because of the surface and the fact he wasn't the same horse from the Derby.  

And yes, I have been to the track, Lone Star Park most often, plus I'm talks with some trainers there to start being the groom for horses, since I am unable to ride anymore due to a back injury that requires surgery.  Hopefully after that I'll be able to get back up on horses.  

05 May 2010 11:52 PM


Was the horse that Kangroo Court beat Shanekite?  I was right there on the rail and Trevor says something like, "And it's all over for........" (he was going to say Shanekite and Kangroo Court came flying by at the wire.)  Whoops!

I don't remember if KC's name had the a between Kang and Roo, and yes, I know what a Kangaroo Court is and I've been Down Under 3 times in the 1980's.  I know that's just inviting a joke at my expense...I'm talking about Australia.

I found Trevor very annoying when he first began calling races at SA.

He would say "(name of horse) is being niggled to go on with it."

Niggled/niggling is a term commonly used in England and South African racecalling, but it really was too much for me.  I probably wasn't the only one, because he made an effort not to say it anymore.  Every once in a while, he'll let it slip out.  Over time I became fond of Trevor's enlightening race calls.

Irish O'Brien may have been the dam of Danebo.  I'm not sure about that and didn't want to go check just now.  

For years after Trevor's rare race call mistake my friends (me too) would always say, "And it's all over for________." Fill in the blank with whoever is in the lead near the wire with a horse closing fast from off the pace.

Can't remember...did Longden train Kangroo/Kangaroo Court?

05 May 2010 11:58 PM

Gary Lynn wrote: "Super Saver was opening daylight to Ice Box? What race were you watching Rechelle?"

I was watching even after the race how much SS was still running whereas Ice Box was done.  I'm not saying Ice Box isn't a talented horse, but I don't understand why people are knocking Super Saver over Ice Box, when he was more of a favorite than Ice Box was. For most of the day, he as co-favorite with LAL.  He was still more the favorite than IB at post-time.  I just believe that Super Saver is the better horse than IB and obviously by the odds at post time, I am not alone in that belief.  He has good breeding, especially on his dam's side (A.P Indy, Seattle Slew, Secretariat, Northern Dancer, etc).  He is a classy & professional horse who is peaking at the right time.  I don't think Ice Box is quite there yet, but will most likely peak around the time of the Haskell, the Woodward, etc.  Had Ice Box been ridden better, he might have won, but the fact is on that day at that time, Super Saver was the better horse.  Super Saver is bred for distance and I don't think he will have a problem in the Belmont, other than possibly being tired.  I do believe he'll get the Preakness and hope that he gets the Belmont.  At the very least, can we agree that a Ttiple Crown winner would do wonders for the horse racing industry & attract new fans, people who normally wouldn't watch racing?

06 May 2010 12:00 AM

btc and Dr. Drunkinbum,

and I almost forgot Zookeeper--

I'd like to join you in Lexington, but just on a visit if you move.  Too much snow for too long.  You'll be spending the money you're saving on rent/home purchase for heat.  My Mom retired to Missouri and pays $250+ a month just to heat her small home part of the time.  Then there's ice storms, tornados, and flooding.  

I was at the BC in 2006 and drove to Lexington.  Really enjoyed the visit...but to live there????  

06 May 2010 12:03 AM

JayJay, I say that Rachel is coming back to her own by the race she ran Friday.  She went from losing by a length to losing by a nose.  She showed last year she can normally run any surface, but I don't think she like Louisiana.  But I'm not using that as an excuse, she lost by a better horse that day.  On Friday, she was much closer and beaten by a nose.  Rachel isn't going backwards in her races, she's going forward.  But JJ has stated time & again how he feels about synthetics and I agree with him.  It's not fair to dirt horses in most cases, it leans too much towards turf.  Anyways, if Rachel had lost by a length or more on Friday, then I'd agree with you that she's not the same horse as last year and she may never been.  Long layoffs have destroyed other fillies (Stardom Bound most recently and Proud Spell as another example.  2 top filles who were run so hard that they needed a break and who never came back to the track the same as before).  There is no reason for Rachel to travel to CA when the BC is run on dirt this year.  I will agree, this may been the year Z finally gets her Horse of the Year and right now, I think the only horse that could possibly upset her is Quality Road.  

06 May 2010 12:07 AM
Gary Lynn

Bold Executive filly first, another second in consecutive races at Woodbine 5/5. Winning exacta pays $450.

06 May 2010 12:10 AM

JayJay wrote: "If you read articles about IceBox, Zito said that IceBox was trained pretty hard for the Derby run, he didn't win the derby so there's really no pressure in running in the preakness"

Then in that case for Ice Box, I would put more of the fault on the trainer than the horse.  There is no reason to train a horse hard right before a big race.  Gallop him at 5 or 6 furlongs, but don't train too hard or you will go into the race with a tired horse.  I will give that Ice Box is a regally bred horse, very impressive top & bottom.  Will he handle a mile and a half is yet to be seen.  If he does and wins, then he will be the better horse on that day.  Also to discuss that Da'Tara won and was impressive, that race may have turned out differently is Big Brown  hadn't had his shoe torn off at the beginning and was running with a nail into the sensitive bottom a hoof.  Da'Tara beat a group of 3yos that weren't as good as previous years.  There weren't any real good horses that year, at least not at the time of the Triple Crown races.  The past 2 years thankfully we have had much better horses.  

Next, El Kabong, I honestly don't remember, did Calvin ride him in the Belmont?  My point is that for the rest of the season, he could never pull off another win, even in the easier horses in the West Virginia Derby.  Had he not been run in the Belmont, he probably would've been better, a lot of horses that win the Derby & lose the Preakness don't run the Belmont, it's a lot to ask of any horse, they are bred for speed and not stamina.  It's all about how much the horse can make in the breeding shed.  Colts are under a lot more pressure than fillies are.  You see a lot of fillies running when they are 4, 5, even 6.  How many colts do that, in the overall scheme of things?  I liked MTB as much as the rest of you, but I think by the end of the year, he was really done with racing.  Hopefully he comes back and has a better season than he did last year, but if he doesn't, he deserves to be retired.  He earned that much, but his owner & trainer, IMO, are more about the almighty dollar than they are about the horse.  Don't believe that Chip Wooley is concerned about his horse more than he is about recouping some of the money they spent on him to enter all those stakes races and especially the BCC last year.  I don't believe Chip has ever been truly concerned about MTB, if he was, then instead of vanning from NM to KY he would've flown him.  That is a whole lot of miles to trailer a horse with a chance of the horse being hurt.  If it was NM to TX or even LA, then that's one thing, but to go that far, the horse will be restless and more likely to be hurt.  

06 May 2010 12:21 AM

Paula, MTB did run well in the Preakness but he isn't nearly as well bred as most of these horses are.  I still think that MTB should've skipped the Belmont, he might have been better all season.  But I go by what the horse does all season and MTB never had another win and lost against easier compamy in the West Virginia Derby.  And it was truly sad watching him try to run the BCC when he was tired and should've been done for the season.  

As for Rachel, I have not knocked her at all.  I am still a big fan of hers, I'm just worried about how that long layoff affected her.  She is improving each race, especially on Friday's.  In her previous race, she ran great but you could tell she wasn't nearly in the shape she was last year and Friday, she looked like she was almost there but not quite.  She ran beautifully in that race and I think she will win her next race out.  Just give her another month and she shouild be ready to go.  Considering how long that layoff was, she is doing very well, much better than Stardom Bound did after hers.  It is yet to be seen if she will be as good at 4 as she was at 3.  But don't think that I don't give Rachel her credit, I always will.

06 May 2010 12:29 AM

Tim G.

I checked Pedigree Query and according to the entry, Cunning Stunt is a 1969 filly (that may be why her names not on the list) by Young Emperor by Grey Sovereign, out of Jet Mist by Jet Pilot.  Miss Grillo is the bottom line granddam.  

The *mark for info says, "Try saying her name straight in a race call."

Back to Triple Crown Talk--I read an article in the Bloodhorse last fall when Winstar is talking about Super Saver and American Lion as their two best up and coming colts.

Super Saver's there and American Lion may win some races in the future.  

With the rain and sticky, muddy track I think it's probably better that some horses didn't get in.  Jason, sorry about your future bet on Interactif.  Anyway.

06 May 2010 12:29 AM

MTB is a great little horse. His quarter horse trainer just didn't have that all out of his system and raced him too much at the end and he was tired.

Yes you can come in 2nd and be a great horse. Ever heard of Affirmed and Alydar?

06 May 2010 1:50 AM
So Cal Racer

tick..tock..time for Preakness got your pick yet.. for those that like super saver a bet on the exotics is ok, a win bet on the other hand is somewhat iffy.. simple question is the winner of the $900,000 of the $100K bet will even bother placing a Wager on Super Saver?.. on the Preakness..maybe not...for Pletcher mission is accomplised "KY DERBY" only.. keep that in mind..

06 May 2010 2:12 AM
Tim G

Dreaners Mom, okay I overlooked Paxil. I'm going to need some for my SAD. But, it's a medication by Rx only so not like it's advertising for something you can pick up at the local convenience store. GlaxoSmithKline? Don't think there's a horse by that name.

Heck I think a lot of horses should be named for medications, prompt people like Draynay to get on something for his meglomania.

 The rules on naming them after cities??? Grand Island an obscure Nebraska town on the sand dunes right?  Dublin, a cosmopolitan city, home of the Book of Kells and Trinity College, Wm Butler Yeats, Samuel Beckett. Guess they could have gone with Baile Átha Cliath, so people wouldn't get upset? That's not a problem to name after a place. Naughty New Yorker? etc  Seems like you're upset over not getting the name you wanted but I'll bet there is a real person by that name.  I've seen a lot of names like Dumbledore(sic?) and other HP references. Then we have Artax from The Never Ending Story. But they're make believe. Like I said find JR Pennington and get his permission

My main point was you cannot change a name after the horse has run without a seriously good reason and it just doesn't happen very often.

Draynay, why does it matter so much to you WHAT Zenyatta does or doesn't do?

Handicapping? You are clueless. First rule of thumb, a good handicapper doesn't tout others. Ruins the odds if they actually CAN handicap.

drunk and bert, why would you guys want to live in Lexington? The meets are so short, Cal has a revolving door of one and dones and there's much more to do in Louisville.LOL

06 May 2010 2:47 AM
Dreamer's Mom

4 yr old year notoriously hard for all.  Easy to be big fish when you are only running against 3's.  I know we make most of our money the 3yr old year.  RA is now the "baby" running against old girls and old girls are cagey!

06 May 2010 6:27 AM
Gary Lynn

5/5/10...Jot it down folks..big boys/dirt..."when she does she will lose" / dreadneigh, who should stop letting molly do his handicapping...wouldn't be such a dead issue.

06 May 2010 7:53 AM

I may know bloodlines and pp's but I absolutely have to see the whole post parade to pick my I guess I go a lot by looks.  In the looking horses in the post parade were LAL, Super Saver, Stately Victor, and the super good looking Mission Impazible.  Ice Box looked rather small.  I was almost tempted to change my picks, but I didn't.  I still went with SV, IB, and POP. Score 2 out of 3.  At the Fair Grounds, I saw one gorgeous horse in a certain race and chose him on looks alone.  He was the longest shot on the board.  Then he started to run.  I have seen awkward gaits on horses before, but my lovely horse had 4 left feet.  It was the most ungainly horse I had ever seen running..

...but he did win.  Ka-ching!  So sometimes...looks tell a lot....but not always.

06 May 2010 9:36 AM

Paula, I have to side with you.  In the Jockey Gold Cup, when Exceller beat Seattle Slew...everyone still agreed Slew was the best horse that day.  In spite of not winning, he ran like a champion.  The only races MTB had real problems with were on synthetics (a tough deal for any dirt horse).  In every other race...he was all heart.

06 May 2010 9:41 AM

Another excellent Derby ride by Calvin Borel.  He's awesome.  A working man's rider.  Glad to see Pletcher get the Gorilla off his back.  But I don't truly see this horse winning the triple crown.  The Belmont is a grueling 1 1/2 mile race and their are many deep closers waiting on deck to meet the challenge if so be.  

06 May 2010 10:17 AM
Dr Drunkinbum

El Kabong

 Bravo !!!!!! Hip hip hooray, hip hip hooray. For he's a jolly good fellow, for he's a jolly good fellow, for he's a jolly good fellow which nobody can deny. Which nobody can deny. You and Mine That Bird.

06 May 2010 10:31 AM
Dr Drunkinbum


  Paula Higgins, you're a jolly good fellow too. Mine That Bird was 2yo champion of Canada. He ran in ALL 3 legs of the Triple Crown in 2009. Which in itself is rare and difficult to do, but to finish 1st, 2nd, and 3rd(in the top 3) in all 3 Triple Crown races is very rare. His Beyer was 105 in The Derby, and 106 in The Preakness. To use the term "fluke" for Mine That Bird is disgraceful and annoying to those that understand horse racing. And Paula is absolutely correct. You don't have to win to have run a great race. Remember that pre-race odds are only a guess as to how the public will bet but ironically they influence how the public will bet. Many, many times horses whose odds should have been much lower go off at high odds and it's called a big upset when in reality that horse winning at 20-1 should have been 5-1. That is not the case with Mine That Bird in The Derby who should have been high odds but is part of the reality and perspective of odds. But an improving and peaking horse that wins The Derby without dominationg races prior to The Derby is not a fluke. It is the nature of The Derby. No matter how many races you won before The Derby, and how dominationg you were doing it does not mean you will win The Derby. You have to be ready to run the race of a lifetime on the first Saturday in May in a grueling race.

06 May 2010 10:56 AM
Dr Drunkinbum

Tim G

  I will take your advice and consider Louisville. I'm considering everywhere that I can live near a big track.

Aluminaut-I think seasonal is the way to go. You're right. Or visit. Thanks.

06 May 2010 11:13 AM
Tim G

Like Wayne quoted from 'Run For the Roses' when Charismatic won. "It's the chance of a lifetime in a lifetime of chance"

There have been a lot of horses whose victory could have been called a fluke. But you just don't say that about a Derby winner.

It's the biggest Dream a horseman can have in the U.S. Why try to diminish the accomplishment or taint that dream?

It reeks of petty jealousy. Just like anyone trying to minimize any extraordinary accomplishment by ANY horse.  

06 May 2010 11:14 AM


Watch the stretch run.  Rachel was under the whip the entire stretch, while the victor was under a hand ride.  She had the rail with Borel (can't lose factor right?).  She had the lead and was caught and when it was time to really dig down (like champions o) she GAVE UP as in CAVED IN.  We're talking about a HOY against a horse that has never been mentioned in the same breath.  Continue to dream on.

06 May 2010 11:16 AM
Tim G

Good grief Rechelle, give it up.

Chip vanned him with frequent layovers. He stopped in Tx and other spots for a bit. Not like he had his old broken down 2 horse hooked up.

These trailers now days? Some of the ones rodeo people haul in cost $100,000. They have air ride. Vans are even more easy rides.

Some horses don't take kindly to be flown, but they flew him to NY.

Did you ever see the remake of National Velvet? Some horses get riled up, those that pitch a fit in a trailer or van, lots easier to stop than on a plane.LOL

Also do you know what it costs to fly a horse cross country?

Wayne plans to van his contingent up to Pimlico.

Hey it didn't cost Chip a cent to enter him. If he didn't perform they get a different trainer, he's not their only trainer anyway.

You already came off as clueless and just cemented it when you said you didn't recall Calvin riding him in the Belmont. That really indicates you just have an agenda you want to press or are starved for attention.

Aluminaut, I spoke about the horses name coming off the list after a certain time. They've also revoked names if an owner makes a big deal about it. I guess really, if people have a mind that goes in that direction it will regardless. Some peoples minds do, mine doesn't.

06 May 2010 11:59 AM
EL Kabong

Rechelle, Dock, Paula,

Point of reference on comments about MTB and time for a laugh. Like most, even good old Tom Durkin who called his win "an impossible result here" I was as dismayed as anyone.  If you had asked me then how I felt about MTB, the word fluke would have been preceeded by another  F word. I remember it well, my gut felt like someone had rammed a festivus pole into my stomach at top speed and knocked me to the floor. All that handicapping and pontificating was reduced to folderol. Never mind the tickets in my hand worth nothing more than the spent ink and flimsy paper and resembling a golf ball more than a pari-mutuel ticket, or two. So for me, recognizing MTB's achievements is not because I've been in his camp all along. Not even close. In fact, he beat me all 3 times because I clung firm to  my belief that he couldn't get there again, no way. That horse schooled me. I have no choice to but to recognize him now for what he did. And I appreciate it. It didn't cost that much and I learned plenty.

06 May 2010 12:11 PM
Dr Drunkinbum

Tim G

  It's funny how that works. At one time I thought Baffert was kind of a jerk and often worked his horses too fast before a race. Now I love Baffert. What I think you were saying about Pletcher is that although he is an excellent communicator he isn't always real entertaining because he doesn't joke around or tell amusing stories. He comes across as serious. But I'm sure you'll agree that he is articulate and gives us interesting factual information about his horses and jockeys. As far as Jason's comment, "Who cares what he says to the media Tim." You have to remember that Jason had a very high temperature at that time and really didn't understand what he was saying. Obviously he cares very much what Pletcher says to the media.

06 May 2010 12:32 PM


       Did you get everyone that disagrees with you told off?  In that case, its time for a "chill pill".

06 May 2010 12:38 PM

El Kabong,

Your comment regarding Mine That Bird deserves the "Best of Show" medal on this blog. BRAVO!!!

06 May 2010 1:16 PM


Another thing about the memories of the greats like Cigar and Secretariat that were HOY.  When was the last time a reigning HOY lost the first two races to mediocre competition the following year?  As far ads Zen hiding out.....If she would have raced in the La Troienne would you still have made your silly comments?

06 May 2010 4:26 PM
EL Kabong


I have a saying:

Fool me once, shame on you.

Fool me twice, shame on me.

Fool me thrice, I must be shameless.

06 May 2010 4:55 PM

El Kabong,

Love your style!!!

Mine is quite different. Once I fall for a horse, I hang on to it, like a pitbull, no matter how many times he/she loses. Believe me the rewards are not great either on this side of the fence.  :)

06 May 2010 7:40 PM

I guess it shouldn't surprise me that you draynay couldn't handicap well enough to see that one. A real handicapper can find the hidden gems to round out the big payoffs not just throw out every name in the race then claim they picked the winner after the fact.

the_wiz 05 May 2010 1:36 PM

Wiz and jayjay you couldn't handicap your way out of wet paper bag. Leave it to the experts like me.

draynay 05 May 2010 5:32 PM

Draynay : LOL, you're a joke, you know it.   You kept avoiding my question because you have no idea to handicap so you come online and look for blogs like this to help you pick a winner.

jayjay 05 May 2010 11:03 PM


Maybe you could devise a 3 race handicapping contest for these 3 people. (Example) Whither's, Preakness, and Belmont. Their pick's could be sent to you, after all 3 submit their picks, you could then post them, that way none of the 3 would know who picked who. This is only if all 3 of them agree. Winner get's top handicapper bragging right's of the 3 of them.

06 May 2010 9:37 PM


Correction: I meant The Dwyer not the Whither's.

06 May 2010 9:44 PM

Rechelle : With regards to Icebox, I don't understand your reasoning of "it's the trainer's fault".  We are talking about the derby right ?  I would guess and this is just a guess, that most of these 3 yr olds are trained to win one thing, the derby.  It's the most important race in their lives so of course with 6 weeks in between from winning the Florida Derby to the KD, they will have to train him hard.  This is the race, if they win the derby, then they will have to take the next step, if the horse can't run after the derby, then so be it.

I can only guess that most owners and trainers out there have one thing in their mind from October to May, not to take anything away from the Preakness or the Belmont but they don't think about those races prior to the derby if their horses are running in the derby.  If they lose the derby, then they think about the two other races to try and beat the derby winner, if they win the derby, then they think about the preakness.  If they win the preakness, then they'll think about the belmont.  I would bet Draynay's paycheck that NO OWNER or TRAINER ever thinks about the triple crown prior to the derby, it's ridiculous.

Just curious, what kind of trainer were you?  Thoroughbred ? Quarterhorse ? Show horses ?

07 May 2010 4:23 AM


Since Rechelle is busy repeating and repeating her redundant-self on the new blog, I'll do my best re your question: Rocking Horses!

07 May 2010 11:43 AM
It Aint Easy being good

BTW I GOT SMOKED DERBY DAY! I have a derby day hangover and need the preakness to get here fast! I had no winning tickets first time in a long time for the derby! I feel the most major races the chalk usually wins.

Anyone glad super saver really won? I am not a fan.....dont like pletcher and the name is dumb and the horse is good but not a star. I hope a star will emerge in the preakness like rachael did last year and curlin did as well. I love the preakness more than the derby but this field seems very weak!

07 May 2010 2:06 PM

HAHAHAHA ZK!  I forgot that one LOL.

tcc:  I will gladly accept the challenge even though the pressure of potentially losing to Draynay is huge, I'll try and have fun with it :)  That is if Jason agrees, he can post our picks when he wakes up on the day of the races (hoping he wakes up before noon his time.)

Dr. Drunkinbum : Are you based in SoCal or NorCal ?  I've seen you post comments about being in SA and also watching horses at GG...just wondering.

07 May 2010 2:41 PM

Bless all your pea-pickin hearts for the respect and love going out to MTB.  Last year it seemed there were very few of us.  I absolutely agree with every positive word said about that valiant little guy.   Since so many of you have said it so well I'll just say ditto!! and I can't wait to  see him running again.  I seem to remember there were a few wonderful heartwarming moments provided by his trainer during MTB's triple crown run.  They were great for the sport and I absolutely never tire of watching MTB win his Derby.  It is a thing of joy to see every time.

07 May 2010 8:34 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


 Norcal. Just hoping to live near a real track for awhile before I die. Norcal was once good, but that's long ago. Lost in the Fog had 10 Beyers in a row 102+. 111, 114, and 116 were the highest, then he got cancer. Just mentioning that because Gilchrist just retired. He lost Fog, then Aleo, then Norcal quality of racing.

08 May 2010 1:20 PM

Cool, same here.  I didn't think it was fair that we finally got a local horse that was great and brought attn to NorCal racing and then be taken away by cancer.  Yeah, he's done training but he did mention he'll be a bloodstock agent so he's not really leaving the industry which is great.  I wish Russell Baze would retire though, don't hate him but I could never time my bets on him and it's very frustrating!

Back to the TC :  So yesterday, DRF had an article about the mount on LAL being undecided.  I asked Steve Haskin to give Baffert a call and tell him to consider Mike Smith.  I know Baffert is waiting for the decision to run LAL in the preakness but I think he's going to run him and I'll be betting him to win and beat SS if Mike Smith is on him otherwise, I'm sticking with SS playing him with LAL and Dublin and Pleasant Prince.  Have a feeling no longshots in the preakness so double up on your bets!! :)

08 May 2010 2:52 PM

Oh yeah, anyone else have a gut feeling "It Aint Easy being good" is Draynay in disguise ??  

If not, no offense to you It Ain' just seems like to me that Draynay probably realized how much lies and BS he has spewed on here and tried to confess incognito just to get it out of his chest.  

It Ain't's comment sure sound like something a confessing Draynay would say... :)

08 May 2010 2:56 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


  I loved Bay Meadows. Hated to see it go. It was set up so nice. I really had a blast there. I know exactly what you mean about Baze. Part of it was my problem for always trying to beat him, but when I did bet on him he lost. In 1986 I was able to go to GG Fields almost daily. I beat Baze with Vicky Aragon quite a bit. Or at least it seems like it was quite a bit. I think Rosario is the best jockey in CA, and I'd put him on LAL but it will probably go to Garcia if there's a change, and Garcia is good too. I like Pleasant Prince first, LAL 2nd, Schoolyard 3rd and Super 4th in The Preakness.

08 May 2010 3:59 PM


For quite a while now I've been refering to It Ain't Easy as Draynay's clone. As if we didn't have enough with ONE. The only way to get rid of them is to ignore them. Responding is playing into their game: Attention at all cost.

Re a new jockey for Lookin at Lucky, a very confident fearless rider is needed in MHO (for what that's worth). I have expressed before that because of everything that has happened, both horse and jockey have lost confidence in each other and have become tentative. Is Smith the answer? I really don't know. He himself is not fond of the rail.(No Borel is he!)I'm glad I'm not Bob Baffert. Right or wrong he has to make a decision soon and live with it after. Not easy!

08 May 2010 5:17 PM

Dr Drunkinbum,

A crying shame about Bay Meadows. And for what? A pile of rubbles? Same people own Hollywood Park. Only the crash in the economy and the downturn in the housing market have saved it (momentarily) from the same fate. Ironic isn't it?

08 May 2010 5:30 PM

Fly Down was very impressive in The Dwyer, one more arrow in Zito's arsenal for The Belmont. Interesting!

Gomez on Dublin for the Preakness. Baffert put it nicely. Allow Garrett to secure a mount for the race, since he is still undecided about Lucky. He didn't blame the jockey for the Derby troubles. Classy!

08 May 2010 7:01 PM

Yeah, I like Bay Meadows too, I use to go there a lot for night racing as it was closer to me than GG.  I think with the shortage of horses in CA, they just couldn't sustain it.  I just hope we don't lose GG as well.

GoGo got Dublin, I don't know how I feel about that but it seems like a good match.  I think GoGo is a much better jockey than Nakatani but I don't like that Thompson lost that mount just because GoGo is available.  Terry knows the horse much more than GoGo.  Just like what happened to Line of David.

I agree that Rosario is the best jock in CA too and I would love to see him on LAL too.  I don't know if Garcia, I know Baffert uses him a lot but Garcia doesn't have the same experience as Mike Smith when it comes to TC but like you said, it'll probably go to him.  I'm not sure I will put him on top if Garcia rides him although he is good, I just don't think he has the experience.

Fly Down looked good winning the Dwyer so looks like Zito's got 2 going to the Belmont.  

08 May 2010 8:07 PM
Tim G

Yes ZK, classy way to represent it in public.

If GoGo fits Dublin like we think it'll be great. If he gets him in a situation like he did LAL in a couple races it'll be disasterous.

Terry getting to stay on one is nice. Wayne has been trying to keep him around. Northern Giant, could surprise.

08 May 2010 8:32 PM

Tim G,

Knowing how you like Dublin, I was hoping you would give your thoughts on it. Let's hope for the best for both horse and jockey.

I can't believe how dead did blog has become. Horses are racing all over, we're in the middle of the TC season and everybody is on the new blog discussing "what may be, or should be".

It got lonely talking to myself on here. Hope more people show up. There's so much going on...

08 May 2010 9:07 PM
Tim G

Yes I hope Jason writes a new blog on Monday. There's a lot going on right now.

Things are starting to change pretty quickly and next week will get exciting.

I know they say the Preakness is the forgotten jewel but wouldn't it be funny if they wouldn't allow access to the Belmont to anyone who ignored the Preakness?

Especially if SS wins and we have a TC on the line? LOL

The jock situation with Dublin is up and down. Terry did okay in the Derby and has a pretty good chemistry with him, but the experience factor is immeasurable. We'll see more after Garrett breezes him.

It'd be strange if I didn't like Dublin.

08 May 2010 9:28 PM


The other blog is boring.  I read parts of it, but lost interest.  A lot of posts though....

I actually gave the It Ain't Easy is Draynay theory some thought a while back.  It Ain't Easy's grammar and blog style change.  Draynay's kinda the same.  Could be someone's alter egos, along w/Pasturelands who is visiting greener or is out to pasture lately.  Draynay needs to make his Christmas/Holiday card wearing the pink hat and dress.  For the KD, first he has to work and won't be there, then he wouldn't be wearing the dress anyway, then he's attending the derby and cashing a big SS/Borel ticket.  Too much drama for me.

Caracortado worked at SA today.  We still don't know what to expect from him on dirt.  (Pomona doesn't count.)  

09 May 2010 12:53 AM

Tim G,

Do you own Dublin? or Are you associated with this colt in some other way? Your last statement of 9:28PM has me wondering... If you are, it would explain a lot!  :)


Pomona does count. Caracortado broke his maiden there, at first asking, on the sacred DIRT highly  valued by so many. I would say he handled it quite well and I wouldn't discount him in the Preakness.

Draynay and his cohort are not worth discussing. They add nothing of value to any blog they participate in. :(

09 May 2010 10:05 AM

For quite a while now I've been refering to It Ain't Easy as Draynay's clone. As if we didn't have enough with ONE.

Zookeeper 08 May 2010 5:17 PM

BTW I GOT SMOKED DERBY DAY! I have a derby day hangover and need the preakness to get here fast! I had no winning tickets first time in a long time for the derby!

It Aint Easy being good 07 May 2010 2:06 PM


Maybe the name should be changed a little by deleteing the letter t in the first word, also deleteing the third and fourth word.

09 May 2010 1:27 PM

Someone mentioned before the Preakness is the best race of the TC this year and it's starting to look like it will be.  I'm starting to get that anxious anticipation of what the field will look like.

I'm still sticking with my picks at this time SS with LAL, Dublin, Pleasant Prince and a real long shot :)  I'm now sure how I feel about GoGo getting on Dublin, at first I thought, this should be a positive thing but now I'm thinking how did LAL's troubles and the Derby run affected GoGo's confidence ?  What if Dublin gets the 1 hole ?  I think he'll put too much pressure on himself trying to figure out what to do with Dublin to avoid getting in trouble.

Zookeeper : I treat Draynay's comments as a bug in Jason's blogs, it keeps appearing when it shouldn't be there because it's just garbage.  The guy doesn't know anything and is desperate to be acknowledged in online blogs as a handicapper :)  Shows you how desperate one can be.

09 May 2010 1:37 PM


Some  horse's pointing or thinking about going to the Belmont, are Uptowncharlybrown and Stay Put.

09 May 2010 1:58 PM
Pedigree Shelly

        I really think LAL is the one to beat in the Preakness ,if he runs ! The Preakness really fits his running style . I'd like to see Dublin win for a change , especially since his sire ( Afleet  Alex's performance in that race was unforgettable !)  I'd love to see SS have a shot at the TC but, Ice Box and Zito will be waiting for him at Belmont !

09 May 2010 5:16 PM


Too Clever!


Do you mean a "bug" as in VIRUS? lol!

Pedigree Shelly,

NOBODY can do what Afleet Alex did in the Preakness!!! There's another hero who competed in all 3 legs of the TC. At least he gets a lot of respect, Mine That Bird gets very little from some horseracing fans(?).

If Super Saver is good enough (and that's a big IF) even Zito won't be able to spoil a TC. Boy! could we be this lucky to finally witness one this year?

09 May 2010 7:09 PM

Zookeeper : yes, a virus!

Pedigree Shelly : I agree, that's why I told afleetalexlover to change her name because she doesn't seem like a nice person lol.  Afleet Alex's run in the TC was one of the best performances of a 3 yr old in this decade and combine that with the story behind his name, it was just an awesome TC year for me.

I'm still looking at SS with LAL / Dublin and Pleasant Prince but my original list I had aikenite because LAL wasn't listed as probable at the time.  But now, knowing M Garcia is riding LAL, I might put Aikenite back on my list lol.  Something about that combo doesn't jive with me, I get that gut feeling that they won't mesh well together and LAL won't run the way he needs to to win the race but I'm hoping I'm wrong!

Aikenite was my long shot and still is!!

09 May 2010 11:18 PM
Pedigree Shelly

     !   Jay Jay , I'm not too confident about LAL's jockey either

Yes. That was an unforgettable TC with Afleet Alex,I even got a chance to shake hands with Jeremy Rose :)

10 May 2010 1:19 PM
Soldier Course

A couple of years ago a good friend who doesn't follow racing, but who is gracious about my passion, made an interesting comment about the next Triple Crown winner.

She thinks that the next one will sneak up on us, instead of coming in on a big industry and media blitz. He will quietly win the Kentucky Derby, finese the Preakness, then manage to win the Belmont. She stopped by for happy hour a few days ago. I reminded her of this prediction ...

10 May 2010 3:09 PM
Pedigree Shelly

       I really wish that Ice Box would run in the Preakness ! I wish he would learn to run closer to the pace , instead of trying to do a " Silky Sullivan " in his races.I'd love to see a TC winner in my lifetime ! I was alive for Secretariat , Slew , and Affirmed but ,was too young to appriciate them ! I remember vaguely watching  " Slew " win the Derby with my Grandpa .Can SS finally end this terrible drought ? I certainly hope so :)

10 May 2010 6:16 PM

Barring any changes to the list of runners, here's what I'm throwing away my money on :) :

SS / Aikenite on top with Dublin / LAL and Pleasant Prince on the bottom.  

I'll be using the same for most of my exotics, might throw PP on top on some of my trifectas and superfectas.

I know the clown will wait until after the race and claim another winning ticket specially if SS wins (the one he has already predicted more than once that will never win the Preakness.)

I'm in a high right now for this years TC chase, I'm almost feeling that this is probably the year.  Like I said before, the racing gods might actually give it to TP and Winstar just because both have waited so long to win their first Derby, imagine if they win TC after winning their first Derby in so many years ??  What a story...

I just know that this week is going to drag on and on and on just because I can't wait for Saturday.

Good luck with all your picks folks!

10 May 2010 6:50 PM

Soldier Course,

From you keyboard to the racing gods' ear! Would LOVE to see it happen!

10 May 2010 9:35 PM

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