It's Time For The Sham Now and

Are you tired of Kentucky Derby prep races that don’t soak up excitement and leave your appetite whet for more?

Then you need the Sham, now!

You’ll be saying “WOW!” every time you watch the replay of this race, as it is sure to be a classic pitting five maiden winners up against California fair circuit stakes winner Life Is a Joy in a battle to determine the West’s best two-year-old not named Shared Belief.

But the Sham now does so much more. For horsemen, there’s a $100,000 purse plus 17 points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, including ten to the winner.

Giant Finish only needed ten points to get in the gate for the 2013 Derby, so beating just five other three-year-olds on January 11 at Santa Anita might be good enough for a spot in the starting gate on May 3 at Churchill Downs.

Whether you watch this race live, via simulcast, or at home on TwinSpires TV, the camera guy will be following this six pack’s every move during the two-turn, one-mile race leading to a finish that is sure to have you saying Sham wow.

And if you click this link in the next five minutes (because I can’t do this all day), you can access FREE Ultimate Past Performances for the Sham courtesy It’s like getting one for the price of none. You’re going to spend $75/month for unlimited PPs, anyway. Or at least you should because that’s a great deal!

Now that you’re sold on what a great race this is and how great it will be to handicap it with and watch it on TV, I’ll try to sell you on a winner.

There are only two choices for me in this race: #1 Kristo and #5 Top Fortitude. The former will likely be at least half the price of the latter as the favorite, which makes Top Fortitude the pick.

Yeah, Top Fortitude has some questions to answer like two turns and dirt and stakes company, but this is the time of year where answers are in short supply, anyway, so might as well take the price. As kin to Uh Oh Bango, EZ Dreamer, and Rocky Bar, I’m not too concerned about dirt, and while further distances might cause some pause, one mile does not.

In other weekend action, Oaklawn opens today (Friday, January 10), and the $100,000 Dixie Belle Stakes headlines the nine-race card, and I’m going to get involved on #8 Street Story if her 5-to-2 morning line holds up, as I see her as good as likely favorite #3 More Than Beauty (8-to-5 morning line) but a better price.

Street Story got her doors blown off last out at Fair Grounds, but that was off a six-month layoff, and she was well clear of third in a strung out field. If she tracks More Than Beauty (herself off a four-month layoff) she could take control turning for home to get it done.

For all your Oaklawn needs, though, has you covered with the Arkansas/Florida Track Stats circuit book that not only has Oaklawn but also Calder, Gulfstream, and Tampa. This book includes trainer and jockey statistics for each track and circuit as well as individual track bias information plus shipper stats. E.g., horses who last raced in Pennsylvania had a +1.19 ROI in their first start at Oaklawn in 2013. Clearly, you can bet Pennsylvania shippers with confidence at Oaklawn, a nugget that could come in handy when going after 1-million points with’s Oaklawn Kickoff.

As an update to Wednesday’s blog regarding Let 8 Ride at, I whiffed on Wednesday and didn’t get to advance to Thursday, but for the 12 who did cash for $184.80 on the 22-to-1 winner Wino, they had a big decision on Thursday, bet $184 for a chance at the $1,500 added money on Friday-Saturday or pocket the $184?

Six players let the $184 ride, and two successfully tabbed #3 Chargray at $10.40 to collect $956.80. Now the question is, let $956 ride on Friday or pocket the $956.80? They’re really only risking $706, though, because even if both bet and lose Friday’s players are guaranteed $250.


Leave a Comment:

Mary Zinke

I like your win pick. Top Fortitude,Life Is A Joy,Kristo, Midnight Hawk.

10 Jan 2014 10:24 PM

Caspian Sea will contest the 6th at Gulfstream Park today. It is a 9F MSW on Turf. He will be L1 with a ML of 20-1.

Why mention a colt contesting a difficult MSW race that was unplaced in its only effort? Well there is not much to go on with exception of pedigree. Yes, I am a pedigree freak.

What’s interesting about his pedigree? See below

Shocking – 2009 Melbourne Cup winner:

Street Cry – Maria Di Castiglia by Danehill by Danzig – Northern Dancer

Whobegotyou – 2008 Caulfield Guineas winner:

Street Cry – Temple Of Peace by Carnegie by Sadlers Wells - Northern Dancer

Long John – 2013 Caulfield Guineas winner:

Street Cry – Hosiery by Night Shift by Northern Dancer


Street Cry – Sea Chanter by War Chant by Danzig – Northern Dancer

The Street Cry cross with Northern Dancer line broodmare sires has produced the above G1 winners on turf. It has been reported that his connections were trying get him on turf for his debut. He contested an 8F MSW on dirt for his debut and passed a number of horses.

This colt has proven pedigree on turf and at a ML of 20-1, I think he is worth a small across the board wager.

NB: Derby winner Street Sense was produced from a similar Cross.

11 Jan 2014 7:28 AM

Midnight Hawk!

11 Jan 2014 8:05 AM

The Sham stakes is comprised on an odd field. The most experienced in the field with three graded stakes starts is Anthology. He is bred for turf and has performed his best on the surface.

Despite his poor showing on dirt and the 2 weeks between his last start, he is entered in a dirt. The move seems illogical from every angle. What about doing what’s best for the colt?

Did he exhibit something to suggest he can reverse his fortunes on the surface? At a ML of 8-1 is he worth a gamble to find out? Tempting but risky.

The remainder of the field is anybody’s guess. If you are a fan of two times Breeder Cup Classic winner Tiznow, then Kristo might appeal to you. Why? Inbreeding in the 4th generation!

Tiznow and Kristo are identically in inbred to Northern Dancer in their 4th generations. At 2-1 there isn’t much value but $4 on $2 is a good return on investment..

11 Jan 2014 9:48 AM

Coldfacts Ill take Majestic Sunset in the same race(6th)at Gulfstream,but the morning line is 5-1 looks good but the field has two Also eligibles and a main track only entrant.

11 Jan 2014 10:09 AM


I like to spend a little to win a lot. Majestic Sunset at 5-1 in unappealing. Caspian Sea has the more appealing turf pedigree and the odds of 20-1 might never be seen again. Assuming he wins!

Who knows a Majestic Sunset might make a picturesque  scenery as it descends into the Caspian Sea.  

11 Jan 2014 10:49 AM
Pedigree Ann

Thanks for the parody. I've seen that commercial enough times I can recite it from memory. Gave me a grin, at least.

Anybody want to remember Sham, the horse for whom the race is named? By the great Pretense (so his name fit him) out of a Spinaway winning full sister to CCA Oaks winners How and Cherokee Rose (all by Princequillo), he was bred to run as long as they write them. He won the Santa Catalina and the Santa Anita Derby impressively, then headed east for his final Ky Derby prep in the Wood Memorial. Beaten a mere head by Angle Light (giving weight), he went into the Kentucky Derby as one of the top choices and it took a track record from Secretariat to beat him. Ditto in the Preakness.

In the Belmont, nobody of class wanted to face Secretariat and Sham and the pair fought head-and-head for a mile before Sham had no more to give and faded to last. He was injured in training soon thereafter and retired. Many of his best offspring ran in Europe (Jaazeiro, Lafontaine, Sham's Princess, etc.), but he had some good ones here, too, - Arewehavingfunyet for one. Also damsire of G1 winners Sham Say, Defensive Play, Dixie Brass, Lovellon (Oaks in Argentina), etc.

11 Jan 2014 11:00 AM
Mary Zinke

Oh, Ontology. Was wondering who Anthology is.

11 Jan 2014 12:19 PM

Coldfacts The proven way to spend a little to win a lot requires more luck.It is betting exotics.For instance if you can pair Majestic Sunset with colts that can come in 2nd then depending on if you are sure of 3 or 4 that can come in 2nd or play MS on top in 10 cent supers and throw in more numbers.Of course you need MS to come in the money for bettors, which is 1st 2nd or 3rd that way if you are right you get all your money back,more than you bet back,or a part of your bet back,depending on your wager structure.

11 Jan 2014 12:25 PM

Betting 20-1 shots to win is a VERY LOW PERCENTAGE bet.I would rather play exotics knowing that if your 5-1 shot hits the board you swing for the fences, but still get an intentional pass(in the win,place and show pool)

11 Jan 2014 12:27 PM
Plod Boy Phil

re:  GP 6th

With the lone upgrade scratched,  I'll give both the 8 Majestic Sunset and the 10 Caspian Sea legit chances to win.  The former's lone turf race was upgrade worthy, while the latter's debut was on a speed friendly surface in a race with a speed friendly flow. Darley runners getting 1st Lasix produce solid win ROIs.

Betting the &1 exacta box and will use each to fill in the R6 void in my rolling gimmicks.

Good luck.

11 Jan 2014 1:20 PM

I actually like #2 BLARP in the 6th at GP.  

11 Jan 2014 2:09 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Kevin -

Did you see that freak performance in the GP 4th that beat my bold upgrade Juba ?

Good luck in 2014.

11 Jan 2014 2:22 PM

Constitution to Holy Bull? Very impressive rushing up into 22 fractions and holding the lead. Pletcher scratching his other well regarded runner said just as much

11 Jan 2014 2:29 PM

Juba didnt help himself by allowing first time starter Constitution in the 4th at Gulfstream to squeeze thru and get the rail on the backstretch after a poor break.The race was at 7 furlongs.

11 Jan 2014 2:35 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Juba ran a great race and got beat.  What jock could fear a horse rushing into that Q after missing the break?  He probably smiled when he went in there,  knowing exactly that no 1st timer was going to do what that horse was trying to do going 7f in his debut.

Not sure what happens from here,  but that was a race worth watching.

11 Jan 2014 2:41 PM

Sham Stakes only starts with 6 horses entered, now with 2 horses scratched, down to a 4 horse field. REMARKABLE!!!! A race that counts to earning DERBY points.

11 Jan 2014 3:49 PM

claimed one yesterday....

11 Jan 2014 4:02 PM

Lets see what Surfing USA and Scotland do in their next.I think I have another also, have to check.

11 Jan 2014 4:14 PM
Plod Boy Phil

re:  GP R8

Hey look.  A Darley first time Lasix user in the winner's circle.

11 Jan 2014 4:17 PM
Plod Boy Phil


Another win for your guy Blueskies.

11 Jan 2014 7:39 PM
KY VET thinking those are derby horses..........weak weak weak...........

11 Jan 2014 8:21 PM

breeding? are you Ever right? How does a guy who only picks horses off breeding, end up picking Shared Belief?

11 Jan 2014 8:24 PM
Mary Zinke

Phil, it was a really nice win by Blueskies(I still love Sermon!, but I did think Blueskies would take the San Pasqual), and made up for my horrendous long shot picks in the Oaklawn feature--they were the worst finishers.  No opinion on the Sham, just due to the tiny field.

deargod with the broken record "blarbs" about Shared Belief already yet, KY. What's wrong with his breeding? I'd like to know your magic formula for making the perfect race horse baby. I'm waiting. Fill me in, lol. Had to crack myself up early this morning. Determined to not sleep until noon today.

Did the Ft.Lauderdale look like "just a prep" for Nikkis Sandcastle to you, Phil? Kind of(toned that down) ticked me off that he didn't win.

I'll check out your claim, KY.

12 Jan 2014 10:24 AM
Mary Zinke

Phil, it was a really nice win by Blueskies(I still love Sermon!, but I did think Blueskies would take the San Pasqual), and made up for my horrendous long shot picks in the Oaklawn feature--they were the worst finishers.  No opinion on the Sham, just due to the tiny field.

deargod with the broken record "blarbs" about Shared Belief already yet, KY. What's wrong with his breeding? I'd like to know your magic formula for making the perfect race horse baby. I'm waiting. Fill me in, lol. Had to crack myself up early this morning. Determined to not sleep until noon today.

Did the Ft.Lauderdale look like "just a prep" for Nikkis Sandcastle to you, Phil? Kind of(toned that down) ticked me off that he didn't win.

I'll check out your claim, KY.

12 Jan 2014 10:24 AM

PBP McLaughlin does better with the Darley fillies than the colts.He also gets early speed horses with most of their stock as opposed to Albertrani.It wasnt a surprise to me he won that at 5-1,I didnt bet because I was looking at the exotics and I am not unhappy that I didnt bet because the 9 came in 4th.  The inside horses one and two got good position and just went around in conveyor belt manner when no other horse challenged McLaughlins horse for the lead.I think I would have lost money on the wager because my bet would have been weighted more to the exotic side, and less in the win place show pools.

BTW interested to see how McLaughlin does with Cairo Prince a colt with early speed from Pioneer of the Nile, in the Holy Bull in a couple of weeks.

12 Jan 2014 10:34 AM
Mary Zinke

KY, Your new mare was mucho expensive for you so that made me think about the old guy not having a nice farm retirement. Will you be returning her to dirt sprints? Seems like a nice mare. Hope you figure out what needs to change because seems like she should be winning. Some nice closing sprints in her record. Used to wear blinkers when she was a baby. I don't like front wraps, but looks like she had them back on even after a layoff, so I guess she needs them in every race now. I wonder about their histories--what happened to them.

Your filly's race coming up this week may have a fun race call with the similar names.  GL

12 Jan 2014 10:52 AM

Coldfacts on a closely related topic (in my mind)How many mares were sent to breed with Pioneer of The Nile,and if possible what web site to you find the stats on the number of times a stallion is bred.

12 Jan 2014 10:54 AM
Pedigree Ann

Brontexx - the Jockey Club has traditionally kept records of mares bred, to make sure that they match up with foal registrations the next year. Yes, I found it - the reports of mares bred, at

Pioneerof Thenile (or however they spaced it) was bred to 142 mares in 2013. Paddy O'Prado bred 171 mares! Not a horse I would have bred to, but what do I know. Gemologist bred 154 mares, while Ghostzapper covered 125; novelty still outpacing established worth. Do not see where to get numbers for previous years.

12 Jan 2014 11:49 AM
Plod Boy Phil

Gulfstream  R11  5 Foolish Tiger (5-1) exits the wrong side of a notably Speed favoring race that gave us 50-1 runner up Trust the Deputy on Thursday.  Makes his 1st start off the claim for a high % outfit

12 Jan 2014 12:46 PM

Pedigree Ann thanks for the information.

12 Jan 2014 1:52 PM

mary......most horses have problems........wraps or no wraps.....trainer is better...........blueskies is nice, but is embarrassing how weak those horses are to be graded horses....they should be running over 100 beyers...way over 100.....

12 Jan 2014 2:35 PM

KY Vet:

Shared Belief is a quite well bred gelding. His near-elite sire, Candy Ride, needs no further mention, and his Storm Cat dam has been a good producer, and is a full-sister to the brilliant racehorse and good sire, Tribal Rule. If you see him as not well bred, you haven't a clue about pedigrees.

12 Jan 2014 3:00 PM
Mary Zinke

I'm sure you're right about the speed figures(here's where KY will stop reading since I said he was right, jk)but they may be more impressed with the half million Blueskies has won them. And I went on about it at another site, but great training job getting him to settle down and win races and place in marathons after he was the Dude's made-to-lose workmate last summer and fall.  I wouldn't say this horse isn't fast, but now he doesn't just burn out. Go ahead and talk about the PC. Never thought the pace would be right for him and you can't forget the odd shenanigans of the Canadian horse's jockey. Wide right. The Bull Dog? Oh I notice not Pedroza, who is a nice match for Blueskies, and who knows, as a prep, maybe it was okay that he blew off steam. I just get to watch. I hope I'm not detecting some jealousy of TBG.  And to add insult to insult, Coldfacts had quite a nice high paying winner recently!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

12 Jan 2014 4:10 PM
Mary Zinke

And, P.S., Dolly in the Paseana. I think she's best, even with the surface change. Then, the S.American, Miss Serendipity, then Golden Production, then the 7. 1,2,4,7.

12 Jan 2014 4:12 PM
Mary Zinke

By last summer and fall, I meant 2012, not 2013. Don't get all picky about that.

12 Jan 2014 4:20 PM

Races make so much more sense after they are run.  Nothing worse than the"how did i miss that" feeling.  Race 8 GP.

12 Jan 2014 4:23 PM
Plod Boy Phil


6 Royal FJ (8-1) is one of three upgrades out of the Dec 14 common race - an Extreme for Speed.  His preference for the downhill turf course is clear with his huge runner-up try here last Feb despite another Extreme for Speed.  Place bettors may find this one especially appealing.

12 Jan 2014 4:31 PM
Mary Zinke

I like four hill runners in that SA r8, Phil. I like Royal FJ, and almost picked him to win, and he certainly is capable of the win. This is my order: 8,7,6,1. GL

12 Jan 2014 4:38 PM
Mary Zinke

I like the Phil Collins "No Reply At All"  to my breeding question. Probably read that and was bewildered, like, "What is she so pissed off about?"  Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha.

12 Jan 2014 4:59 PM

if you pick a horse off breeding.....for the biggest race, there are horses with much better i said, blueskies is a nice horse.....the grade 2 is really a sign of not that many good older cairo prince is doing great in his training....feeling good about this one....what'd i get? 23 to 1? i forget........

12 Jan 2014 5:40 PM
Mary Zinke

I want to know the formula for breeding a Derby and TC winner(give details)and P.S. Half a million dollars.  They have presidents' faces on them, not grades.

12 Jan 2014 6:01 PM

what do you mean a half a million dollars?

12 Jan 2014 6:58 PM

what do you mean a half a million dollars?

12 Jan 2014 6:58 PM
Mary Zinke

Blueskies has won $442,270 for his new barn. Excuse me. I'll let ya know when he hits $500,000.

12 Jan 2014 7:13 PM
Mary Zinke

I like your Derby boy, KY, BUT I did not like the Remsen which was also a "key" race of yours last year. And, I just watch the races, but I bet the pedigree people will be all over your guy's unsoundness in the family tree.

12 Jan 2014 7:17 PM
Little Bill

If Cairo Prince wins the Derby he'll do it with the highest D.I. in Derby history, 7.0. Real Quiet was 6 and change. Same sire line.

12 Jan 2014 7:52 PM

havent you D I guys given that stuff up already? your 10 years behind the curve.....everybody already got embarrassed the last 20 years on that.....i dont really go on breeding that much........its a very flawed science........

12 Jan 2014 9:59 PM

Its funny......people always knock these really good horses because of their breeding.....horses that have already proved they are really they not understand that the horse already proved them wrong....?

12 Jan 2014 10:02 PM
Rusty Weisner

To whoever wrote this,

I thought this post on the 4-horse Sham was a hoot.  Until I saw you wasted your money trying to beat the 2-5 favorite.  Now you're the punchline.

12 Jan 2014 10:24 PM
Mary Zinke

The hell? You just brought up breeding, KY. Knock it off.  See ya for the next blog.  I know you laugh at your brattiness.

12 Jan 2014 10:39 PM
Mary Zinke

My good friend Ed wrote this. Why not try to beat a favorite in a newly three year old race when they are stretching out? How rude. Whatever. Have to have thick skin. I'm sure that didn't hurt him. Enjoy your $2.80 winner and your 4 baby field. Why even post that? Whatever. Free country blah!

12 Jan 2014 10:50 PM
Mary Zinke

AND ANOTHER THING IS AND THIS SHOULD BE OBVIOUS, the blog writer and my top pick scratched. Do you get it? AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

12 Jan 2014 10:51 PM

i didnt bring up breeding.......i brought up, how a guy that goes entirely on breeding picks that horse.....every year the coldcut man comes up with these picks that make no sense.....picking horses on breeding.....if you are going to go on breeding thats fine,.......just pick the best breeding.......its like a guy that goes on beyers only....picking the 5th best beyer in the race......the guy is bizarre...........wasnt putting down blueskies....pointed out the truth about how weak the older horses are.......the drf "how to read the form" shows that alw horses run 100 beyers.....grade 1s about not wrong on these points......and the derby crop is very weak this year......maybe one of the weakest in the last few decades.........hard for horses to improve 20 points...beyers.......not that many will...........and remsen was not a strong race?.....had the 2 best of the crop so far........

12 Jan 2014 11:18 PM

The Derby is more about history than breeding. Let’s take Cairo Prince as an example and annoy the hell out of a certain clown.

Rarely do Derby winning sires double as Derby winning broodmare sires. This feat was achieved in 2013 when Orb won the Derby. Orb’s dam sire Unbridled also sired the 1996 Derby winner Grindstone.

Before Unbridled, Count Fleet sired the 1951 Derby winner Count Turf and also sired the dam of the 1965 Derby winner Lucky Debonair.

The time between both occurrences spanned 48 years.

Holy Bull sired the 2005 Derby winner Giacomo. He is also the dam sire of Cairo Prince.

What are the odds of another Derby winning sire, being a Derby winning Broodmare sire in successive years?  Unimaginable and virtually impossible!

I am of the opinion that Cairo Prince can be safely eliminated from the Derby top spot as the historic hurdle to be crossed for his improbable victory is not allowed by Derby history in successive years.

The dam sire of the 2009 Derby winner Mine That Bird was Smart Strike. He was also sire of the 2009 champion 2YO for 2009 Luckin At Lucky.

I point out that historically the Derby winning broodmare sire in one year is never the sire of the Derby winner in the following year.

In light of this colt fact, Lookin At Lucky should have been eliminated from the Derby top spot despite his brilliance. He went on to record a 6th place finish in the Derby.

Derby history is brutal and takes no prisoners.  It is  not widely reviewed and consequently is does not get either the respect or recognition it merits.

12 Jan 2014 11:35 PM
Mary Zinke

Why would I go by breeding and not what they do on the track? And it's not like I don't notice the severe lack of details in the responses. I have laundry and dishes to do now. You do this for a living? Good luck. Don't think any debate teams will be recruiting you as captain. I still didn't like the Remsen.  

12 Jan 2014 11:40 PM


12 Jan 2014 11:44 PM


12 Jan 2014 11:46 PM
Mary Zinke

If you have something to say to my friend,KY, say it to his face. END of that discussion.

12 Jan 2014 11:57 PM

sorry...cap lock was stuck.....maybe im onery because my horses in cali are slumping......8 starts 4 wins 2 seconds 2 3rds.....3rds both lost win by a neck...50 percent winners....100 percent in the money.....lets improve those this week...........

12 Jan 2014 11:57 PM
Rusty Weisner

Mary Zinke,

It was coming from a good place: empathy.  I tried to beat the favorite in the four-horse Robert B. Lewis last winter.  I thought the contributor's post was funny.  If only he'd been able to lay off this crummy race.  

13 Jan 2014 8:33 AM
Plod Boy Phil

Lousy week on these pages for me, so far. The rare Monday card at AQ presents one more:

Race 3  7  Scotus recorded impressive 'vs Flow Win' in closing from the back of the pack despite the Speed favoring nature of the race.  

13 Jan 2014 8:40 AM


I cannot confirm the number of mares that were sent to Pioneerof The Nile in 2009 but I can state he bred less than 150.

I came up with a threshold of 150 after researching the Derby winner from the biggest book of mares bred. I then allowed another 15.

From available records it appears Super Saver is the Derby winner produced from the biggest book of mares bred in the last 10 years.

Orb was produced from a book that was over 100 but less than 150. He did not last long.

No stallion should cover more than 70-80 mares and even that is high.

When Congrats is bred to 240 mares and the great Invasor is bred to 40 in the same year, it show the craziness that goes on in the breeding industry.

Reassigned half of the mare bred to Congrats to Invasor and give him a chance to produce a great horse. He won races at three distance comprising the Triple Crown.

Overbreeding is just as crazy as under breeding

13 Jan 2014 9:32 AM

How often do gamblers ask themselves the question, What was I thinking?

Prior to the BCJ I posted some information supporting fancy for the 2YO colt Medal Count despite his turf pedigree. He finished amongst the also ran with some of my cash.

He showed up at Gulfstream Park on Sunday in a 7 1/2F Turf race. He was bet down to 2-1 and for me his odds were just too unappealing to recover what he owed.

I went looking elsewhere for value. I came across a Dixie Union colt that was a 1st out MWS winner. He looked physically imposing and based on his PPs had tactical speed.

He was drawn at post #11 and was unlikely to encounter any traffic problems and his tactical speed would be a major assets to cross over from his wide draw.

He left the gates at 50-1 with a certain portion of my cash in the win pool. Yes! I had only win wagers.

He was up with the leaders and under pressure but appeared to be comfortable. He assumed the lead at the top of the stretch and appeared to be repelling all challengers until Medal Count showed up in an attempt to take more of my cash, by wining this time instead of loosing.

When I saw Medal Count closing rapidly, I cannot recall ever screaming, where is the line so loudly in my gambling career. My screams went silent when the wire came as it appeared Medal Count had nabbed victory with his last stride.

There was a small ray of hope when the photo took forever to be decided. To the naked eyes, Medal Count had won. However, his perceived margin of victory suggested a swift resolution to the photo.

Dead Heat was the result!

That result prevented a grown man from crying in public. While I was disappointed that each win ticket did not be return $100 plus, I was happy with the $41.

With no place, show or exactas wagers, had my 50-1 selection really got caught, I would have asked the age old question , What was I thinking?  

13 Jan 2014 10:12 AM
Pedigree Ann

Come on, Coldfacts, you know what the breeding business is today - you plan breedings to maximize auction price, not to produce a good horse. When a horse is hot, like Congrats was after he had such a good year as a freshman sire, everybody wants on the bandwagon. Invasor was never going to be hot - 'foreigners' are not respected as much as locals, even if they have many of the same bloodlines. Especially when they only raced here as an older horses - horses who win big races as 2 or 3 year olds HERE are most preferred as stallions. US breeders are very parochial.

13 Jan 2014 10:33 AM

Coldfacts its 142.Pedigree Ann gave me the information on the other blog.Dont get ahead of yourselves Cairo Prince is doing good NOW, so the race I am looking at is the Holy Bull.

13 Jan 2014 11:09 AM

Hey, everyone, thanks for the lively discussion on my post. I hope you enjoyed the picture. As to Rusty's complaints, I make plenty of losing picks without having to take crud for when my top pick scratches!

13 Jan 2014 12:35 PM


"Coldfacts, Dont get ahead of yourselves Cairo Prince is doing good NOW"

Kindly accept my apology if my post suggested I was doing same.

I consider the contents of my post as providing an historic perspective of the Derby wining chances of Cairo Prince.

You might have missed the fact that I specified he should not be considered for the Derby top spot on the board. There are other spots on the board.

Derby history should not be totally ignored when evaluating the winning chance of some horses.

NB: Conquest Titan has a more appealing pedigree and has run faster. He is also doing well and I expect him to win the HB. Stay tuned.

13 Jan 2014 12:44 PM

Birdstone is one of two stallions that have the distinction of siring two horses that won a leg of the Triple Crown in the same year. He sired Mine That Bird and Summer Bird.

There are two colts sired by Birdstone on the 2014 Derby Trail. Are they worthy Derby contenders based on the pass success of their sire?

The colts are Mexikoma and Conquest Titan. Of the two, Conquest Titan has a race record that is similar in parts to that of Mine That Bird. Both Conquest Titan and Mine That Bird won the Swynford Stakes in Canada and then went on to finish last in the Breeders Cup juvenile.

Whereas MTB disappeared after his poor BCJ effort and reemerged 4 months later in New Mexico, Conquest Titan was back at the races 28 days later. Mine That Bird was never in contention is his BCJ, whereas Conquest Titan caught the gate and was with the leaders for the 1st 6t (1:09.70) and thereafter disappeared to last.

Conquest Titan contested an 8F AlwOC at Churchill Downs 28 day after his poor BCJ effort.  The tactics in the AlwOC were opposite to those in the BCJ. He was on the lead in the BCJ but was last in the AlwOC. The pace was fast i.e., 22, 45, 1:10. He made a Mine That Bird type move to sweep by all to win going away in 1:35.27. Wow!

General A Rod who finished 2nd Conquest Titan returned to win the Gulfstream Park Derby. It appears both colts will match strides again in the upcoming Holy Bull.

Birdstone has established himself as a classic sire from his 1st crop. The dam sire of Conquest Titan is former HOY Mineshaft. He has small broodmare band and is relatively unknown as a broodmare sire.

Mineshaft came close to being a Derby winning sire in 2011 with Nehro. I would not underestimate the chances of Conquest Titan going one better for him as a broodmare sire.

13 Jan 2014 12:47 PM
Mary Zinke

Another one that used to be pretty good in stakes is that 5, Phil, in AQU r3.  GL

"Like" to Ed.

13 Jan 2014 1:19 PM
Mary Zinke

Way to go, Phil!  Hope you had the exacta, too.

13 Jan 2014 1:31 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Mary -

I missed your exacta filler.....dadgummit.

No worries.  I put a nice swing on this one.  

Body of work friends.

Body of work.

13 Jan 2014 1:34 PM
Mary Zinke

Giggles for dadgummit.  See you for the Saturday stakes.

13 Jan 2014 1:46 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Mary -

I must have just missed your comment.

Unfortunate since I was kind of looking for an exacta play, but found none.

13 Jan 2014 1:51 PM

Pedigree Ann:

You're missing some realities, historical and otherwise. Breeders and Buyers are aware that very few South American stars, even those that had performed well in the US, make it as sires in the US. The only exceptions that readily come to mind are Forli and Candy Ride. Forli, however, was exceptionally brilliant as a runner, and had a pedigree particularly well suited to US mares. Candy Ride was brilliance personified (unlike an Invasor), but his pedigree was questionable at best- as was Invasor's. Truth is, I liked Invasor's "look" and hoped against hope that he would succeed. Fact is, he has proven to be a poor sire. Yes, he hasn't received the numbers that many others have, but did receive enough numbers and quality to now "prove" his lack of ability as a sire.  

13 Jan 2014 4:16 PM

Let me direct this at DA BOARD and will include Coldfacts.

I am aware of Birdstones propensity for begetting distance 3yos,in fact I bet on Mexikoma in the BCJ.Eventhough he is well bred as a precocious distance colt,the track and the race shape didnt help him.

On American dirt tracks in routes the normal winner runs near the front,at least in contact with the pacesetters, its no wonder to me why the breeding in the US is tilted towards speed and not stamina.

Last year Orb was a good colt, running good at the right time,BUT the race shape(pace)and the track condition helped him a lot to win the Kentucky Derby so easily.What did he do after that in the TC.

I think the same thing about Mine That Bird what did he do after that in the triple crown series.You can be the absolutely best bred colt for distance but in a 10 furlong race on the dirt, unless you are undefeated and a monster, either the pace needs to help you or the track or both, if your running style is to drop back and make one sustained run.

In Europe they run on turf and polytrack which is a WHOLE DIFFERENT THING.

13 Jan 2014 5:11 PM

Pedigree Ann,

Your insightful input is always appreciated.

“Breeders and Buyers are aware that very few South American stars, even those that had performed well in the US, make it as sires in the US.”

The Brazilian bred Leroidesanimaux sired the 2011 Kentucky Derby winner and 2013 Dubai World Cup winner Animal kingdom. The likes of Secretariat, Affirmed, Spectacular Bid and A P Indy got large books of great mares and never sired a Derby winner.

If the truth be told, South American stars have not been given sufficient mares to be successful with the exception of Candy Ride. He had 100 plus named foals in 4 of the six years between 2006 and 2011.

“Candy Ride was brilliance personified (unlike an Invasor)”

Fact Check: Invasor

Hall Of Fame inductee.

Twice Top-Rated Horse in the world.

Won six consecutive G1 races.

HOY in Argentina and the US.

Won from 5 1/2F to 12F

Won races in three different countries

Won 11 of 12 starts

Invasor has a significantly more impressive résumé than Candy Ride. To suggest the he is the lesser of the two does grave disservice to the brilliant race horse.

There can be a lot of hypotheticals about what Candy Ride could have achieved if his racing career was not cut short. HOY awards are not based on Hypotheticals and neither is induction into the Hall of Fame.

Despite Invasor’s stellar achievements he now stands for $4,000 and has a total of 118 named foals in three seasons at stud. That’s an average of 39 per year.

Is that enough for success?

13 Jan 2014 5:57 PM

KY good luck bro, race don't look to salty lol and as the saying goes the best hop is the drop............

13 Jan 2014 6:20 PM


Not surprisingly, you're unable to grasp the concept of brilliance-as it applies to the racehorse...Invasor's number of runners are sufficient to prove him to be a mediocre, actually less than mediocre sire...I doubt you have the resources (internet probably of little help here) to confirm (or refute) my contention about South American sires/sire prospects, but trust me, very few have succeeded, and some received good opportunity, such as Pronto, etc. I wish it were otherwise, just as I'd prefer that every elite racehorse make a good sire or dam- but the facts prove otherwise...You're obviously out of your league when it comes to this topic, or almost all topics for that matter.

13 Jan 2014 7:27 PM


"Not surprisingly, you're unable to grasp the concept of brilliance-as it applies to the racehorse”

My learned fellow contributor I will concede that I lack the education and knowledge of most who participate in these forums. I would not dare challenge your assessment of me and humbly request no further exposure of my ignorance and limitations.

“Candy Ride was brilliance personified (unlike an Invasor)”

It appears I misunderstood the context in which brilliance was used in the above quote.

I assumed the contributor based the above assessment on the race records of the two South American bred horses and not their stud records.

Let’s put to the test Pedigree Ann’s assessment above:

Candy Ride won 3 races in Argentina before being purchased and relocated to the US. He had a short US career that comprised of three races:

1st  1 1/16M -  Allowance Optional Claim

1st  1 1/8M -  American Handicap (G2)

1st  1 1/8M -  Pacific  Classic (G1) NTR.

Invasor won 5 races in Argentina before being purchased and relocated to the Dubai. He was sent to the US after finishing 4th in the UAE Derby which was his 6th race.  He contested 5 races in the US:

1st  1 3/16M -  Pimlico Special (G1)

1st  1 1/4M -  Suburban Hnd (G1)

1st  1 1/8M -  Whitney Hnd (G1)

1st  1 1/4M -  Breeder Cup Classic (G1)

1st  1 1/8M -  Don Hnd (G1)

He returned to Dubai to capture the World Cup and in the process recorded his 6th consecutive G1 victory.

Pedigree Ann specified that Candy Ride was brilliance personified. ‘Personified’ (represent - a quality or concept). In his three races in the US he won an AwlOcl, an insignificant G2 turf races and the Pacific Classic comprising of 4 horses.

Invasor who was not deemed brilliance personified, contested five G1 races in the US against the best horses of the time and won all.

You are of the opinion that I am unable to grasp the concept of brilliance-as it applies to the racehorse. Are you sure you are directing your views to the right person.

I have very little knowledge regarding the success of South American bred stallions in the US. The little record I have reflect two Derby winners being sired by them i.e., Animal Kingdom and Goto Del Sol. I have no idea of how many have been use in the US and have no interest.

You must have been bursting at the seams to resume you ridicule of me. How long has it been since you last engaged me directly?

I see your love affair with hate continues unabated. If hate floats your boat, sail on thou learned one!

13 Jan 2014 10:34 PM


“Not surprisingly, you're unable to grasp the concept of brilliance-as it applies to the racehorse”

Further to my previous post on your quote above:

You have long regarded me as an empty barrel parading as one that is knowledgeable. You are entitled to your misguided opinions but not the cold facts.

Invasor was twice classifies as the top rated horse in the world; he was inducted into the Hall Of Fame; voted horse of the year in the US and Argentine; won races in three countries, won from 5.5F to 12F and was undefeated in all 6 starts in the US that just happened to be all G1.

Let’s just assume that I unable to grasp the concept of brilliance, would the same apply to the folks that:

Voted for him for HOY in two contries.

Voted for his induction in the Hall Of Fame.

Classified him as the top rated horse in the world twice.

Candy Ride’s résumé reflects a World Record Performance at 8F on turf and a NTR in the Pacific Classic. He never received the awards that Invasor secured. Despite Invasor’s achievements in comparison to those of Candy Ride, Pedigree Ann’s saw it fit to classify the horse with lesser achievements and awards as brilliance personified and the other unlike.

You have chosen to endorse her ill-conceived position and further have the audacity to classify me as being unable to grasp the concept of brilliance. What you have failed to recognize is the fact that you have not only insulted good old Coldfacts but all the folks that voted for every award Invasor secured. Only the brilliant secure such rankings and awards.

You troll these blogs with your chronic superiority complex and feel you have an obligation to impose yourself on all while selectively disrespecting those you see fit. Well, let me remind you Mr. Superiority Complex, you are participating in a forum opened to all. It is not only for those who considered themselves as having superiority knowledge.

There is another contributor that also exhibit symptoms of a superiority complex. You have defended him in the past when his submissions were blocked from a particular blog. The KY VET is a very bright individual. In fact I think you were both joined at the hip at birth. He has not been schooled in the social graces and you are full of crap. You make a perfect union as it appears you equally despite good old Coldfacts.

14 Jan 2014 9:13 AM

Invasor was much more accomplished than Mucho Macho Man and last years winner of the Classic.In an objective vote his year of excellence TRUMPS Wise Dan.

14 Jan 2014 9:26 AM
Pedigree Ann

The meme "South American sires don't do well in the US" is not always based on facts and has become a self-fulfilling prophecy. I have seen My Own True Love *Cougar II deemed a failure at stud, yet he was getting something like 11% SWs from his early crops, from 20-30 foals per crop, got several G1 winners including a Kentcky Derby winner. *Endeavour II was a fine sire, so was *Sensitivo. If Sandpit failed, it was because he was a 12f turf horse, a thorough staying sort in the miler-happy US, not because he was from South America.

As to the term 'brilliance'...., What it does not mean is exclusively front-running speed. It can also mean having a late 'turn of foot' that leaves the rest of the field flat-footed. Hyperion and Nearco were brilliant horses who stayed.

By the way, although Invasor was bred in Argentina, he did his 3yo racing in Uruguay, Argentina's neighbor to the east.

14 Jan 2014 9:31 AM

Pedigree Ann:

I certainly agree with your description/definition of the term, brilliance, as it applies to the racehorse, and with your examples. It's my opinion that Invasor did not fit that description, while Candy Ride and Forli did. (as an aside, I'm not contending that all brilliant runners make good stallions)...I also feel that Cougar II was a good stallion; as a matter of fact, I bred to him, as was Endeavour II...While the over used excuse, self-fulfilling prophecy, can sometimes apply to breeders' choices of mates (for example over use of sons of Northern Dancer, Mr. Prospector, A.P. Indy, etc.), their relative distain, today, for South American imports is based upon good evidence. And, no, Sensitivo wasn't a good sire, as wasn't Gentleman, Lido Palace, Indian Chief II, Pronto, Tatan, and a large host of other top S. American runners (all now almost forgotten due to their failure), many of whom were afforded good opportunity at stud in the US. But all this is somewhat tangential to your implied assertion that Invasor was not afforded sufficient opportunity to prove his merit. Elite (not brilliant) racehorse that he was, he has "proven" not to be a good sire-and the cause here is not self fulfilling prophecy.  

14 Jan 2014 11:31 AM
Mary Zinke

"I bred to him."  Keep talking. Finite. Who does that around a known stalker?  Nah, not interested right now, but I did notice.

15 Jan 2014 2:48 AM
Plod Boy Phil

Delta Downs Let 8 Ride

5 Aragorn's Queen (4-1) projects to enjoy a trip similar to her winning run last out.  There appears to be an abundance of early speed in the race - only the 3 Little Face gives me cause for pause.

$8w 5

15 Jan 2014 6:12 PM

phil.....pretty good pick.....the 3 looks way better on paper.....way better.........but i think he regresses also.......your pick and the 1 horse hometown gossip....not sure which one i like better.....3 gonna be 6/5......good luck

15 Jan 2014 8:42 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Scratch of the 'Face' changes things a bit.

Win bet still going in as planned since I can't fear the favored 1 horse with her 2 wins and 8 show finishes from 12 starts.

15 Jan 2014 8:46 PM
Plod Boy Phil


The second Leg, tomorrow's 8th,  looks to have a legit favorite in the 6 Cole's Magic Vow.  Might be worth going two deep here.

15 Jan 2014 9:21 PM

delta downs R8-#9 hopeshesamiracle sits a stalking chance.Gets them late.


15 Jan 2014 9:29 PM

doubled to the the #5-GEORGE RAY In R7....4-1, far cry from his delish 12-1 morning line.

15 Jan 2014 9:32 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Going to have to deal with the 8 in Leg 2 tomorrow as well.  Ok,  that decides it.  Leg 1 single: 5

15 Jan 2014 9:33 PM
Pedigree Ann

Coldfacts - I think you have misjudged some of these South Americans.

Sensitivo got 200 US foals, 60% winners, 77% winners from starters. He had 13 SWs (6.5%), 3 of which won G1-type races, plus a couple of non-SWs who were multiple G1-type-placed. In all, 26 foals were SWs or SP, 13% stakes-horses. These were repectable figures.

Tatan came to this country after great success in his homeland (and many fine exports to the US), at the age of 13, and only got 3 US crops totaling 55 foals. From those 55 foals came 12 stakes horses (22%) and 6 SWs (11%). He got one G1-type winner and 4 G2-type winners, two of which were G1-type-placed. This is good work from limited numbers.

Father and son Pronto and Indian Chief were dour dirt stayers, late developers, not suited to the American style of racing any more than Sandpit was. Or the outstanding French horse Sagace, a late developing turf stayer. Or Recupere, a specialist in races longer than 12f in France and won the G3 Seneca H (13f) at Saratoga in 1975 and stood in Virginia. Practicante, another son of Pronto, had won 2 G1-type marathons in the US but was taken home to Argentina, where he became a great sire success; I doubt he would have done so in the US.

15 Jan 2014 9:49 PM

i like the 8 horse tomorrow..prior restraint

15 Jan 2014 9:57 PM

I think 'BOOM' is the term.

15 Jan 2014 10:03 PM

not so stalking....

15 Jan 2014 10:04 PM

nice pick....but 1 horse was best.....checked bad....which made 5 check bad also........the game......

15 Jan 2014 10:04 PM
Plod Boy Phil


Welcome back.

Very nice pick,  that.  

15 Jan 2014 10:05 PM
Plod Boy Phil

My pick was just bad.  I don't know Delta at all,  but it looked like a legit front end win, trouble behind him notwithstanding.

15 Jan 2014 10:10 PM

Thanks Phil! Glad to be back! You are correct sir,(vet)that is the game. Bad check cost the race. Sometimes(unfortunately) that is the endgame. Good night guys. Going to fire up the grill for some late night salsiccia e peperoni! mangiare bene!

15 Jan 2014 10:19 PM
Rusty Weisner

I'm going to stick a toe in the water and try the Lecomte this weekend.  Someone give me some insight into the Fairgrounds.  Otherwise, I'll just look for the horse with triple-digit odds.

16 Jan 2014 12:59 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Rusty -

That's good news.  FG is the same as it's ever been. I'm sure there will be dueling Posts here - I'll be sure to provide any wisdom I can muster.

Same as it's ever been.

16 Jan 2014 3:41 PM
Plod Boy Phil

Thursday FG  R7  5 Rack 'em Earl (5-1) had none chance in his debut behind the w-w winner of an Extreme for Speed. A similar move into the turn today may have him near the leaders turning for home.

16 Jan 2014 4:34 PM

Here we are 1 1/2 hours to post in the 8th @ Delta Downs and alive in the "let 8 ride" . Right now im leaning on the 8-prior restraint. With that said it appears that their is an abundance of early speed, which makes me look in the direction of the 5-differently. Has the speed to stalk early speed and pounce in the lane as the speed burns out. The big "chees" abandons him for the 2,another pause for concern. Big concern being his last race was a big performance, and I just cant envision a duplication on 33 days rest. Any thoughts on this race? A 79.00 win wager is certainly NOT of the norm for myself. Any thoughts or words of wisdom are openly apperciated. Of course all of this could change with the post parade.

16 Jan 2014 8:42 PM

hey i812......who taught you 33 days off was bad?   Its a good thing.......we like the same

16 Jan 2014 9:20 PM

hey mary.....the old guy is running sunday....big fav again........good luck to the old warrior.....filly #1 looks good tomorrow......shes onery!

16 Jan 2014 9:23 PM

after what I just witnessed in the 7th @ delta downs. I Like the 5-differently even more!

16 Jan 2014 9:43 PM

so close.

16 Jan 2014 10:07 PM

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