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Thread: Kentucky Derby/Preakness (merged)

  1. #41
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    [QUOTE=Green Jets & Ham]No doubt Edgar Prado had a perfect ride ... well [b]other than stumbling out of the gate[/b], and I don't wanna minimize that, but after that it was a perfect ride completely devoid of traffic...knew he had speed, but now we know he has stamina as well, and he can close as a stalker too

    Suddenly this becomes very interesting[/QUOTE]The start couldn't have worked out better for him actually, because the horses on both sides of him broke away from him. He had ample time to recover and settle into stride. I hope Brother Derek runs in the Preakness and draws just inside of Barbaro. BD was clearly the 2nd best horse in the race and with a decent trip I'd love to see if Barbaro could get by him. Don't get me wrong, the best horse won. I just hope BD gets a fair shake next time, if there is one.
    Last edited by JumbalayaJet; 05-06-2006 at 09:02 PM.

  2. #42
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    [QUOTE=Jetlag]

    Aren't these the same feelings you had towards Smarty Jones? The Belmont is a "Superhorse" Killa![/QUOTE]
    Hey, I came THIS CLOSE to being right about Smarty Jones ... you can't come any closer without actually winning it ... won the preakness following the derby, then had a two or three lenghts lead in the Belmont down the stretch and just got passed at the wire ... that was a gut wreching way to lose the TC

    But you're right Jetlag, that Belmont is a killer coming off the first two legs ... then all you have to do is go win at a 1 1/2 miles :eek: , with very little time to recharge your batteries ... so yeah, its a killer, if it were easy it wouldn't be more than a quarter of a century since the last TC winner, but it might serve Barbaro well that Parado never had to use his whip in the derby and could just allow his horse to gallop in a blowout

    Its gonna be tough, but this horse makes it interesting now, that's for sure ... what he did today was awesome ... that was the widest margin of victory I have ever seen in the derby, including Smarty Jones and including the past three TC winners

    I think they said the last horse to win the derby by that wide of a margin was TC Winner "Assault" in the 1950's?

    Well if I heard that right, that's why I've never seen a horse win the derby by 7+ lengths, cause I wasn't alive the last time it happened ... and today Barbaro anihilated the field without ever even feeling the riders whip ... that horse GALLOPED to an all-time rout ... granted it was a near perfect trip, but it still doesn't get more impressive than that
    Last edited by Green Jets & Ham; 05-06-2006 at 09:14 PM.

  3. #43
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    No, you're right, Ham. Everyone else was tired except Barbaro. I didn't catch the time, but he 's certainly boss of this group.

  4. #44
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    [QUOTE=Green Jets & Ham]You said it, rage ... nailed it ... that was an awesome performance

    That was the type of performance that makes you strarting thinking about the S Word

    As in, maybe we have a Superhorse?

    And dig this, he's really a borderline 2 Year old ... Just turned 3 in April ... but he looks and runs like a beast :D[/QUOTE]


    The interesting thing is that he is coming off a 5-week layoff and should be somewhat rested for the next two races. A lot of people think a horse coming off 5 weeks since his last race aren't in the best of condition to win the Derby. That was one of the things that made me discount him this time. People also question the quality of horses that race in the Florida Derby. You don't get too many winners coming off that race: Monarchos, Thunder Gulch, Unbridled, Swale, and S. Bid since the 70s.

  5. #45
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    [QUOTE=Green Jets & Ham]Hey, I came THIS CLOSE to being right about Smarty Jones ... you can't come any closer without actually winning it ... won the preakness following the derby, then had a two or three lenghts lead in the Belmont down the stretch and just got passed at the wire ... that was a gut wreching way to lose the TC

    But you're right Jetlag, that Belmont is a killer coming off the first two legs ... then all you have to do is go win at a 1 1/2 miles :eek: , with very little time to recharge your batteries ... so yeah, its a killer, if it were easy it wouldn't be more than a quarter of a century since the last TC winner, but it might serve Barbaro well that Parado never had to use his whip in the derby and could just allow his horse to gallop in a blowout

    Its gonna be tough, but this horse makes it interesting now, that's for sure ... what he did today was awesome ... that was the widest margin of victory I have ever seen in the derby, including Smarty Jones and including the past three TC winners

    I think they said the last horse to win the derby by that wide of a margin was TC Winner "Assault" in the 1950's?

    Well if I heard that right, that's why I've never seen a horse win the derby by 7+ lengths, cause I wasn't alive the last time it happened ... and today Barbaro anihilated the field without ever even feeling the riders whip ... that horse GALLOPED to an all-time rout ... granted it was a near perfect trip, but it still doesn't get more impressive than that[/QUOTE]


    I started following horse racing in 1982 when Gato del Sol won the Derby. I can't believe that I still haven't seen a triple crown winner. Watching Smarty lose the Belmont was heart-breaking.

  6. #46
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    [QUOTE=JumbalayaJet]

    No, you're right, Ham. Everyone else was tired except Barbaro. I didn't catch the time, but he 's certainly boss of this group.[/QUOTE]
    That's exact how it looked, Jumba ... he looked like the only horse down the stretch who still had a full tank of gas ... most of the others were running on fumes
    Last edited by Green Jets & Ham; 05-06-2006 at 09:22 PM.

  7. #47
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    I think hos time was 2:06

  8. #48
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    [QUOTE=Green Jets & Ham]That's exact how it looked, Jumba ... he looked like the only horse down the stretch who still had a full tank of gas ... most of the others were running on fumes[/QUOTE]Just checked. 2:01:36 is mighty respectable. Still want to see him hook up w/ BD on equal terms before I brand him a superstar.
    Last edited by JumbalayaJet; 05-06-2006 at 09:27 PM.

  9. #49
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    Bluegrass Cat ran a suprisingly decent race. He had nice form late last year, but did not run well in the Bluegrass. I wasn't surprised to see Steppenwolfer close for third.

    The Preakness usually thins out to about 10-12 horses. Let's see if Brother Derek runs. I wouldn't be surprised if he makes a race of it.

  10. #50
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    [QUOTE=NYRAGE]
    The Preakness usually thins out to about [b]10-12[/b] horses. Let's see if Brother Derek runs. I wouldn't be surprised if he makes a race of it.[/QUOTE]Usually less. BD had serious traffic issues this time. Give him chance to make the lead and Barbaro might get beat.

  11. #51
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    [B]NY POST

    [COLOR=Navy]'SLEW' OF REASONS TO LOVE THIS HORSE[/COLOR]

    By Ray Kerrison[/B]

    At last, a superhorse in the making, the new Seattle Slew, unbeaten and maybe, just maybe, unbeatable.

    Barbaro, the colt that everyone secretly feared, engraved his name in turf history with a staggering triumph in yesterday's 132nd Kentucky Derby, not simply because he won the greatest race in the land but because he reduced a star-studded field of opponents to hacks.

    He took a bunch of potential champions and made them look like spear carriers. Only a giant does that.

    Indeed, not since Seattle Slew came to Churchill Downs unbeaten and unbowed in 1977 to begin his historic march through the Triple Crown has a Derby winner overwhelmed his field as Barbaro did yesterday. He was simply breathtaking.

    And as if to underline the feat, Barbaro ran the Derby mile and a quarter almost a full second faster than Seattle Slew - while under a virtual hand ride.

    In the past few years, we have thrilled to the adventures of many potential Triple Crown heroes - from Silver Charm to Funny Cide to Smarty Jones - all of whom failed the final test at Belmont. The temptation is to hail all big Derby winners as the next Triple Crown champion, the first since Affirmed in 1978. But none came through.

    Maybe, just maybe, we finally have seen a new Triple Crown blockbuster in Barbaro. This just might be the real deal.

    The Derby unfolded perfectly for Barbaro under a sweet, patient, dexterous ride by jockey Edgar Prado. The speed horses, Keyed Entry and Sinister Minister, did as expected, setting a brisk pace, hitting the half mile in 46 seconds, the six-furlong marker in 1.10.88.

    Prado had Barbaro sitting just behind them, like a panther ready to pounce. "He was running so easily, I was never concerned about the horses up front," Prado said later. In a word, it was almost a rocking-horse ride.

    But that's what makes Barbaro so formidable. His gallop is so machine-like, so smooth and fluid, that clockers all week were touting him on television as if they'd never seen a horse move over the ground so effortlessly. Indeed, in Friday's Post we suggested he could be the new Seattle Slew.

    The horse's acceleration was stunningly visible when he swept to the lead and left everything in his jet stream. "What can I say?" said his trainer, Michael Matz, after the race. "You all saw it for yourselves."

    Precisely. Words are futile. Seeing was believing. The least surprised was Prado. "I never had any doubt about what kind of horse he was. Now I just hope we can win the Triple Crown."

    Lordy, the jockey had hardly passed under the wire and he was already thinking Triple Crown. But then, of the 157,000 people at Churchill, the second largest crowd in history, who could not have thought exactly the same?

    Prado was ecstatic. "This is the best," he said. "It's unbelievable. But this is America, the land where dreams come true."

    Barbaro's success was a profoundly moving reward for his trainer, whose personal bravery in surviving an horrific 1989 plane crash and rescuing children about him, is testament to his character, his quiet fortitude and his optimism to life.

    Matz's background is well known, of how he competed in the equestrian events in three Olympic Games and won a silver medal in the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta and was rewarded by being selected to carry the U.S. flag.

    But at Churchill Downs yesterday, he made more history by getting Barbaro to win the Derby off a five-week hiatus, a feat most felt was nigh impossible.

    Like his horse, Matz is magic.

    But nothing like that can be said for all the horses that failed behind him. Brother Derek did best of the flops, dead-heating for fourth with Jazil. But well-bet hopefuls like Lawyer Ron, Point Determined, A.P. Warrior, Bob and John, and Sinister Minister never gave their bettors even a ray of hope.

    Many soaring reputations were damaged here. There'll be some deep postmortems over this Derby, trying to discover what went wrong. In the end, nothing went wrong. It was just that the best horse in the country made ground beef of the competition.


    [URL=http://www.nypost.com/sports/63400.htm]NY POST[/URL]
    Last edited by Green Jets & Ham; 05-07-2006 at 09:23 AM.

  12. #52
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    I heard on radio that for the Preakness there will be only 6 or 7 horses entering into the race. No one comes close to challenging him.

  13. #53
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    [QUOTE=RMJK]I heard on radio that for the Preakness there will be only 6 or 7 horses entering into the race. No one comes close to challenging him.[/QUOTE]That's the norm. With a Triple Crown no longer possible, no use burning out your horse now while he's still developing. He could wind up the best come Travers time and still wind up HOY. There's really no incentive other than a decent purse to continue on the Triple Crown trail. I do hope Brother Derek runs for the Black Eyed Susans. Would love to see if Barbaro could get by him in the stretch. Two other horses impressed me yesterday. Showing Up did just that and Sweetnorthernsaint, who took a TON of money just before the start, looked like a winner until he hit the wall hard. Shame on Kent Desormeaux for misjudging his tank. As for the winner, he had as good a trip as there ever was in a 20 horse field, but he was still cruising at the end. Prado only tapped him with the butt of his stick and hand rode him home. The final time confirms his legitimacy. By the first saturday in June he may be the best since Secretariat.
    Last edited by JumbalayaJet; 05-07-2006 at 12:48 PM.

  14. #54
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    Looks like I might get my wish. I'm hoping that BD's switch in trainers means he's staying east, perhaps for good...


    [url="http://tcm.bloodhorse.com/viewstory.asp?id=33452"]http://tcm.bloodhorse.com/viewstory.asp?id=33452[/url]



    [b][font=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, san-serif][size=3][color=#336600]Sunday Morning Report: Matz Savors Victory While Others Plan Ahead[/color][/size][/font][/b]
    [font=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, san-serif][size=2]by Ron Mitchell[/size][/font]
    [font=verdana, Arial, Helvetica][size=1]Date Posted: 5/7/2006 10:54:09 AM[/size][/font]
    [font=verdana, Arial, Helvetica][size=1]Last Updated: 5/7/2006 12:37:29 PM[/size][/font]

    [img]http://channels.bloodhorse.com/images/content/MichaelMatzDerbyWinrAE.jpg[/img][font=verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][size=-2][color=#666666]Derby-winning trainer Michael Matz makes his way to the winner's circle.[/color]
    [font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][size=-2][color=#999999]Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt[/color][/size][/font][/size][/font][font=Verdana, Arial, san-serif][size=2]As trainer Michael Matz savored Saturday's impressive victory by Lael Stables' Barbaro in the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), trainers of the horses that finished behind the son of [url="http://www.stallionregister.com/sr_sire_page.asp?refno=1049059&origin=BHonline&result=1"][color=#0000ff]Dynaformer[/color][/url] reflected Sunday morning on what went wrong and what lies ahead.

    And naturally, talk turned to a possible Triple Crown sweep for the colt.

    Noting that he had celebrated the victory and fielded a lot of calls from friends, especially those from the steeplechasing and jumping sports that he was engaged in before becoming a flat trainer, Matz jokingly said, "I got hell from the van company driver that I wasn't here at 5:15 (Sunday morning)."

    The trainer said the Derby winner was scheduled to leave Churchill Downs at 4 p.m. Sunday and return to his training center at Fair Hill, Maryland.

    The colt will then be prepared for the May 20 Preakness Stakes (gr. I), where he will face some of the same horses he defeated Saturday and some new shooters. The short list for the Preakness includes Brother Derek, who dead-heated with Jazil for fourth in the Derby, Sweetnorthernsaint, the moderate 5.50-1 Derby favorite who finished seventh, and 12th-place finisher Lawyer Ron, winner of the Arkansas Derby (gr. II).

    Newcomers include Gotham Stakes winner Like Now, second in the Coolmore Lexington Stakes (gr. II), and Withers Stakes (gr. III) winner Bernardini. The D. Wayne Lukas-trained Simon Pure sits alone on the probable list, with possible Preakness starters including Jazil, and all three of the Bob Baffert-trained Derby starters -- Point Determined (ninth in the Derby), Sinister Minister (16th in Derby), and Bob and John (Derby 17th-place finisher).

    The Preakness has definitely been ruled out for Steppenwolfer, the Derby third-place finisher, and Showing Up, who like Barbaro, is owned by Roy and Gretchen Jackson's Lael Stables.

    Considering the impressive 6 ½-length victory Saturday, Matz said he could not get too caught up in anticipating a Preakness win or a Triple Crown sweep. "It's always the same thing: what have you done today."

    Continuing to respond to questions about the successful schedule that brought Barbaro to the Derby, Matz said he tried to keep it simple and wanted a fresh horse going into the Triple Crown races. The colt's Florida Derby (gr. I) victory five weeks before the Derby was only his second start in a 13-week period.

    "This is not real chemistry here. I am trying to keep it as simple as possible and do what is best for my horse," Matz said. "That is usually the best way; the simpler is better."

    In planning for the Preakness, Matz said Barbaro will train at Fair Hill and conceivably not ship to Baltimore, which is about 1 1/2 hours from the training center, until the day of the race.

    Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, who trains Jazil and Flashy Bull (14th in the Derby) was among those lauding Saturday's victory by Barbaro.

    "Very, very impressive -- great connections, great horse," McLaughlin said. "To win like that with that group of horses looked like greatness to me. The next couple are within his grasp to be a Triple Crown winner."

    "We are going to drop back and punt and decide what to do later," McLaughlin said of plans for his Derby starters.

    He noted that Jazil is possible for the Preakness if it appears there are enough fast horses in the field that it will set up for a victory by a late-running type.

    [b]Trainer Dan Hendricks said Brother Derek threw his right front shoe Saturday, possibly in the Derby post parade, one in a number of incidents that might have compromised his chances for victory. But he wanted it clear he was not making excuses that would take away from the victor. [/b]

    [b]"We started in the 18 hole, we were a little wide in the first turn, we got a lot of traffic down the backside and we were way wide turning for home," said Hendricks, adding that the Derby outcome solidified his respect for Barbaro. "That horse is a top-notch runner and I would never take anything away from that horse." [/b]

    [b]Hendricks said Brother Derek will remain at Churchill Downs under the supervision of fellow veteran trainer Wally Dollase.[/b]

    "The winner was spectacular on the day," said trainer Todd Pletcher, who saddled Derby runner-up Bluegrass Cat and last-place finisher Keyed Entry. "He was as impressive a Derby winner as we have seen in a long time. I would say he has better than the ordinary Derby winner's chance (of winning the Triple Crown)."

    Pletcher said he would evaluate Bluegrass Cat's status for the Preakness, noting, "Two weeks back is very quick. Right now I would say it is unlikely."

    Pletcher said it's possible Bluegrass Cat would be trained up to the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).

    Sunriver, the Pletcher-trained colt who was excluded from running in the Derby because he had insufficient graded earnings to make the 20-horse cut, will be pointed toward the Peter Pan (gr. II) at Belmont Park May 20. Sunriver worked six furlongs 1:12 1/5 at Churchill Downs Sunday morning. "That horse is doing very well right now," Pletcher said.

    Trainers considering the Preakness could find some optimism in Pletcher's analysis that Barbaro could be vulnerable due to the short two-week period between the Derby and Preakness and that he will be running over a new surface. "If the same horse runs the same race we saw yesterday, nobody in that field is going to beat him. But things can change in two weeks."

    Pletcher said Keyed Entry, who finished last after setting the early pace, was rank during the race and jockey Pat Valenzuela was unable to rate him behind the speedy Sinister Minister early. He said Keyed Entry would be pointed toward shorter races.

    Baffert, a three-time Derby winner, said Sinister Minister, who finished 16th, "grabbed a quarter" in the same area where he had popped an abscess Tuesday. He said Bob and John (17th) had traffic problems in the race, and that Point Determined (9th) "just didn't kick in."

    Baffert said all three of his horses would remain at Churchill Downs and work next Sunday or Monday, at which time he would decide on their future plans. Baffert was also complimentary of the winner. "What a specimen of a horse. He looked like a man among boys in the paddock."
    ________________________________________________________________

    [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_updates/derby_updates_05072006.html"]http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_updates/derby_updates_05072006.html[/url]

    [b]Barbaro Doing Well Day After Victory [/b]
    [i]Four Other Derby Starters May Eye Preakness; Thrown Shoe, Post Hurt Brother Derek [/i]


    [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/barbaro/"][color=#0000ff]BARBARO[/color][/url] - Lael Stable’s Barbaro was doing well on the morning after his emphatic 6 ½-length victory in the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands and trainer Michael Matz was cautiously looking toward a run in the Preakness, the second jewel of the Triple Crown to be run on May 20 at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore.

    Matz said the colt ate up after his Derby victory and would leave Churchill Downs Sunday afternoon for a trip to his base at Maryland’s Fair Hill training center.

    “We’ll head back to Fair Hill and then we can get everybody there to regroup,” said Matz. While regrouping, Matz said that he and Lael Stable’s Roy and Gretchen Jackson would mull over Barbaro’s Triple Crown aspirations.

    “We have to think that way,” he said. “We’re sort of taking one race at time and we’ve got one down, two to go.”

    Barbaro’s margin of victory was the largest in the Kentucky Derby since eventual Triple Crown winner Assault took the race for King Ranch by eight lengths in 1947. Matz was clearly expecting a big effort from Barbaro - although he stopped short of saying that he expected such a dominating win over 19 accomplished Derby rivals.

    “We were hoping,” he said. “He trained well and a trainer would like for a horse to come to a race like this never missing a beat and never wavering from your plan. He never missed a work. When you come into a race like that, you sure hope that they’re going to run a big race. When they don’t, it really makes you scratch your head. So thank God we weren’t scratching our head this morning.”

    Matz and his family enjoyed a relatively quiet evening following the Derby victory by Barbaro. After a visit to the Derby Winner’s Party at the Kentucky Derby Museum, Matz returned to his hotel after checking on Barbaro one last time during the evening.

    “We didn’t get back here to the barn until almost 9:30,” he said. “He had his head in the bucket eating and we didn’t want to bother him then, so we got back to the hotel and had a few drinks, and that was it.”

    Barbaro was the first horse to win the Derby off five weeks rest since Needles in 1956, and - like Matz’s horse - had won the Florida Derby in that final start. To this point, that Florida Derby - a race that he won by a half-length over Sharp Humor - has been his most difficult race.

    “I think he got a lot out of the Florida Derby,” said Matz. “I think that’s probably the first time he just didn’t run past all the other horses. He just got a lot out of that and ever since that race, he’s done very well.”

    For now, Matz will assess how his unbeaten Kentucky Derby winner - just the sixth horse to emerge from the Derby with a perfect slate - bounces back from his victory over the next few days. Then he’ll look to Baltimore and the Preakness and the effort to keep that perfect record intact through the Triple Crown.

    “I’m sure one day he’s going to get beat,” he said. “But I sure hope it’s later than sooner. I mean, I hope he doesn’t - maybe he’s a once-in-a-lifetime horse. I don’t know.”

    [b]JOHN SHIRREFFS, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/ap_warrior/"][color=#0000ff]A.P. WARRIOR[/color][/url] (18th) - Trainer John Shirreffs stopped by the barn at approximately 4:30 a.m. before catching a flight to California.

    “He came back good,” said Steve Willard, exercise rider and foreman for Shirreffs. “He was a little banged and bruised up, but he’ll live to fight another day.”

    A.P. Warrior will be flown back to California on Monday. He is not expected to compete in the Preakness.

    [b]TODD PLETCHER, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/bluegrass_cat/"][color=#0000ff]BLUEGRASS CAT[/color][/url](2nd)/[url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/keyed_entry/"][color=#0000ff]KEYED ENTRY[/color][/url](20th) - “Both horses came out of the race in good order and will fly to New York on Tuesday. With Bluegrass Cat, I want to evaluate the situation but I would say the Preakness is unlikely. Keyed Entry definitely will not run back in the Preakness; possibly the Riva Ridge on Belmont Day.”

    Pletcher said that Sunriver, who did not have enough graded earnings to make the Derby field would be pointed to the Peter Pan at Belmont on May 20 and that he likely would not be sending any other runners in his stable to the Preakness.

    He said that Wait A While, placed third in the Friday’s Kentucky Oaks, would not run back in the Black Eyed Susans at Pimlico on May 19.

    Pletcher had a banner Derby Week, with eight wins from 16 starters that netted earnings of $1,185,316, including three stakes, highlighted by English Channel in Saturday’s Woodford Reserve (Grade I). He said all of his runners were in good shape with the bulk of the barn shipping back to New York with a string remaining at Churchill Downs.

    [b]BOB BAFFERT, trainer of [/b][url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/bob_and_john/"][color=#0000ff]BOB AND JOHN[/color][/url](17th)/[url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/sinister_minister/"][color=#0000ff]SINISTER MINISTER[/color][/url](16th)/[url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/point_determined/"][color=#0000ff]POINT DETERMINED[/color][/url](9th) - Trainer Bob Baffert knew his horses were in trouble as soon as he reached the paddock and noticed Barbaro before he was saddled by Michael Matz for his dominating Derby score Saturday.

    “I saw him in the paddock, and I told Michael Matz, ‘I hope he’s a turf horse,’” Baffert quipped. “He looked like a man amongst boys in the paddock. Michael Matz did a great job with that horse. What a horse. What a specimen.”

    Baffert soon learned that Barbaro was a “spectacular” horse on dirt, as well as grass, over which he had won his first three career races.

    “When they’re that good on grass (and dirt) - John Henry was that way - they’re freaks of nature,” Baffert said.

    The three-time Derby-winning trainer reported that all three of his Derby starters looked good Sunday morning, but that Sinister Minister who pressed the early pace set by Keyed Entry had suffered a slight quarter crack during his 16th-place finish. Baffert thought that Point Determined didn’t handle the racetrack, but he was most disappointed in Bob and John’s 17th-place finish

    “Bob and John had a horrendous trip. I really thought he was going to run big. He liked the track. He trained well over it. (Jockey) Garrett (Gomez) said he got bumped around,” Baffert said. “Bob and John is still immature. He’s not a horse who can take a lot of jostling.”

    Baffert didn’t seem enthusiastic about running any of his three Derby starters in the Preakness Stakes. “They’ll stay here and I’ll come back next weekend and assess everything,” he said. “I don’t want to run in the Preakness if I don’t have a chance to win it.”

    [b]DAN HENDRICKS, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/brother_derek/"][color=#0000ff]BROTHER DEREK[/color][/url](4th) - The trainer of Brother Derek said his Santa Anita Derby winner returned from his dead-heat fourth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby without a shoe on his right front foot.

    “(Jockey) Alex (Solis) said he thinks it could have been done even in the post parade,” Hendricks reported Sunday morning, “but we’re not really sure when it happened.”

    The missing shoe notwithstanding, Brother Derek had two other factors going against him, Hendricks said “The post position and the 20-horse field. He could have overcome one or the other, but he wasn’t able to handle both together,” he said.

    Hendricks also thought the Santa Anita Derby winner was victimized by the pace of Kentucky Derby 132. “I think Alex rated the horse great and was in perfect position during the 46 (-second) half, but when they slowed down (on the backstretch), my horse got the worst of it,” said Hendricks, whose colt dropped back to 16th before making a nine-wide rally and dead-heat with Jazil.

    [b][color=red]Hendricks seemed enthusiastic about running Brother Derek against Derby victor Barbaro in the Preakness Stakes in two weeks. [/b]

    [b]“I’d love to have another run at him,” Hendricks said. “We’ll train here until a few days before the race. This is home for him now. I’ll ask (trainer) Wally Dollase to help me out.” [/color][/b]

    [b]GALEN MAY, assistant to trainer[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/cause_to_believe/"][color=#0000ff]CAUSE TO BELIEVE[/color][/url](13th) - Galen May, assistant to trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, reported that Cause to Believe came out of the Derby in good shape and would return to his Northern California base on Tuesday.

    Hollendorfer said Saturday night that the Preakness was not in the plans for Cause to Believe.

    [b]TOM ALBERTRANI, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/%20deputy_glitters%20/"][color=#0000ff]DEPUTY GLITTERS[/color][/url](8th) - “He will go back to New York tomorrow. He came out of the race in good shape. We haven’t decided yet (on what is next). I want to see how he is doing and make other plans. At this point, I don’t think I would take him to the Preakness, but we may consider the Belmont. I was a little disappointed (in the Derby) … he got in some trouble and may have been closer, but I am sure there are some bigger disappointments than we were.”

    Albertrani may have one Preakness starter in Darley Stable’s Bernardini, winner of the Withers at Aqueduct on April 29.

    “We will consider that (the Preakness) this week and then make a decision,” Albertrani said.

    [b]KIARAN MCLAUGHLIN, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/flashy_bull/"][color=#0000ff]FLASHY BULL[/color][/url](14th)/[url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/jazil/"][color=#0000ff]JAZIL[/color][/url](4th) - After watching Barbaro’s dominating victory in the Kentucky Derby, trainer Kiaran McLaughlin wasn’t ready to commit either of his Derby starters to the Preakness Stakes Sunday morning.

    “Barbaro’s obviously a great horse with great connections. You’d have to give it a lot of thought to want to chase him again in two weeks,” he said.

    However, McLaughlin is committed to start Like Now, the Lexington Stakes runner-up and Gotham Stakes winner, in the second jewel of the Triple Crown.

    “I’m not eager to run Like Now against (Barbaro), but he deserves a shot,” he said. “You never want to take on an undefeated horse like Barbaro.”

    McLaughlin said that Barbaro has the stuff of a Triple Crown champion.

    “Because of his pedigree and the way he trains, the way he works and runs,” he said. “A mile-and-a-half (in the Belmont Stakes) is not a problem for him. He might even like it more than a mile-and-an-eighth or a mile-and-a-quarter. Winning the Triple Crown is tough to do, but it seems well within his grasp.”

    McLaughlin reported that he’d regroup with Flashy Bull, who suffered an extremely wide trip from his No. 20 post.

    “Flashy Bull was the only one who had to run a mile-and-three-eighths,” McLaughlin said. “He had to run a little further than everyone else, he was so wide. He was eight-wide the whole way.”

    There’s a possibility that Jazil will run in the Preakness Stakes after the son of Seeking the Gold closed strongly from last to dead-heat Brother Derek for fourth place.

    “We do plan on running the horse in the Preakness right now, but we’ll have to talk with the owner,” McLaughlin said. “The thing to do with Jazil probably would be to wait until the Belmont, but a lot will depend on what everyone else is going to do.

    [b]ROBERT HOLTHUS, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/lawyer_ron/"][color=#0000ff]LAWYER RON[/color][/url](12th) - “We checked him out after the race yesterday and he was fine and he is good this morning. We are going to see how he does this week and then decide, but I would say he is a strong possibility to run in the Preakness.”

    [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/private_vow/"][color=#0000ff]PRIVATE VOW[/color][/url](15th)/[url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/storm_treasure/"][color=#0000ff]STORM TREASURE[/color][/url](11th) - Mike McCarty’s Storm Treasure and Private Vow were reported by trainer Steve Asmussen to have come out of their Kentucky Derby efforts in good shape. Storm Treasure finished 11th in the Kentucky Derby, while Private Vow finished 15th.

    “They’re both a little cranky, but I think they’ll be OK,” said Asmussen. “They’re a little body sore and stuff. Hopefully that’s all it is. We’ll give ‘em a day and not worry about it too much today. We’ll leave them alone for one day - for the first time in a long time - and start again tomorrow.

    Asmussen said he never had any hopes for either of his horses at any point in the race. But he had praise for all of the riders involved in a race in which there were relatively few major traffic woes.

    “The race was beautifully run and the riders need to be commended on that,” he said. “It was amazing - nobody had a horrible trip. The riders did an amazing job. The best horse won yesterday, I think, more than any time I’ve ever seen it.”

    Asmussen said he would look for a race on the grass for Storm Treasure. He will probably focus on shorter distances for Private Vow.

    [b]MARK CASSE, trainer of[/b] SEASIDE RETREAT (10th) - “He came out of the race fine and he will ship back Tuesday to Canada. I was pleased with his race, if you can be pleased with a 10th-place finish. He proved he belonged. He’s a tough horse and he was jumping around the barn this morning. The winner yesterday was awesome. There is no telling what kind of greatness we saw yesterday or may see in the future.”

    As for future plans for Seaside Retreat, Casse said: “We might go to the grass, but there is a chance he could come back here because he likes the track so much for the Northern Dancer (on June 17).”

    [b]DALE ROMANS, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/sharp_humor/"][color=#0000ff]SHARP HUMOR[/color][/url] (19th) - “He seems fine this morning. He just didn’t show up yesterday. We don’t have any immediate plans (on what’s next).”

    [b]BARCLAY TAGG, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/showing_up/"][color=#0000ff]SHOWING UP[/color][/url] (6th) - “I didn’t want my horse quite that close, but Barbaro was right there. They were side by side most of the way. But if you’ve got a big, strong powerful horse that you know can go a distance - he ran a mile and an eighth three times - that’s the place to sit, right there. Stay out of trouble and do it. But it looked like a pretty clean-run race.”

    How is the horse on Sunday
    “His legs look very good. That lump on his leg is ice-cold. It wouldn’t be ice-cold if there was infection in there. We just have to get it worked down a little bit, get the lump reduced.”

    (Note: The lump is the result of a puncture wound on the right front suffered in the Lexington Stakes).

    “All his legs are nice and cold. He’s out there eating grass, as happy as he can be. He loves to run, that horse. I was worried about the race affecting him mentally, if it was too tough for him, which it was. I was worried about that, but it doesn’t seem like it, he’s as happy as a clam.”

    What did you think of Barbaro?
    “I saw Barbaro run in his second race, the Laurel Futurity. I was running a horse, too. It was just about as impressive a race as I’ve ever seen. The energy of him was incredible. You could just see the energy all the way through the race. In the first quarter mile you knew he was going to win it and win it easy. It was just an incredible race.

    “It looked like he could run on anything. I think the Dynaformers can."

    [b]ROBIN SMULLEN, assistant trainer of SHOWING UP (6th) [/b]

    “We thought he ran a fabulous race. He’s still right there at the sixteenth pole. It looked like he was going to be second.

    “He just got a little leg-weary. Cornelio (Velasquez) said he was done at the quarter pole that he just would not give up. He said, all he wanted to do was just keep running. And he was tired.

    “That’s to be expected coming off a mile and a sixteenth (the Lexington Stakes at Keeneland). He’s never even had a mile and an eighth race.

    “It was a fabulous race, a good effort on his part. He’s a really good horse.

    How did he come out of the race?
    “He looked like he came out of the race fine.”

    What’s next?
    “Barclay is thinking that we’ll probably let him regroup and probably head for the Jim Dandy at Saratoga and go to the Travers. I don’t know if we’ll get a race before that, but we’ll point to the Jim Dandy and try to go to the Travers.

    “If that doesn’t work out, there are plenty of other spots, but he’s good enough to do it. We’ll just see how he matures in another couple of weeks. You give them two weeks off and a lot of times they blossom. We’ve been drilling him pretty hard to get to this spot. You run him and then you run him back here in two weeks. It’s a lot to ask of an inexperienced horse, but he has handled it very, very well. He just wants to run. He’s so relaxed and so quiet and his demeanor is so good, but when it’s race time he just wants to run.

    “We were really pleased with the effort. He beat a lot of good horses.

    What did you think of Barbaro?
    “Phew. Unbelievable. He just cantered around there. He looks like he could be a Triple Crown winner. The Belmont won’t be a problem and the turns at the Preakness aren’t any sharper than they are here. I think he probably might be the next Triple Crown winner

    “The last quarter was unbelievable. If he can win the Preakness, and Edgar is so smart. How many times has Edgar won at Pimlico? Edgar is so smart about the race and you know he’s going to reserve enough horse. If he can win it, he’s going to win it in a style that he’s going to reserve enough horse to win the Belmont.”

    [b]DAN PEITZ, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/steppenwolfer/"][color=#0000ff]STEPPENWOLFER[/color][/url](3rd) - “I think we were running for second money, the way the winner ran. He’s a pretty nice horse.”

    (Joking)…
    What I’m thinking is by the time he gets to the Belmont he’ll be all tired because Michael (Matz) likes them five weeks apart. We’ll be sitting there waiting on him.

    You said after the race that you probably would skip the Preakness…
    “I’m almost positive. We’re going right back to Belmont and we’re just going to set up shop there and wait on him. Wait on him to come to Belmont and just disappoint 100,000 people when they don’t get a Triple Crown winner. Be the spoiler. Somebody’s got to be the bad guy.

    “Our plan right now is to go back to Belmont.”

    Did your horse suffer any injuries in the race?
    “He sprung one of his front shoes a little bit. Beside that he was pretty clean.”

    Analyze the race.
    “I was closer than I thought I was going to be. The field didn’t get all strung out like I thought, yet I thought the pace was fairly honest. I expected them to be a little more strung out than they were.

    The pace.
    It was 46. I thought it was going to be 45 and some change. It was maybe not quite as fast up front, but it was more than honest. It was still in the quick side. Forty-six is pretty fast going a mile and a quarter. I don’t know that the track was as fast (Saturday) as it has been some years for the Derby. They weren’t setting track records.

    “He came back pretty good, pretty much ate up. Physically, everything looks pretty good on him. “I couldn’t have been any happier with the trip and everything else. I’m a little disappointed maybe that we weren’t second. The winner won off.

    “All in all, no complaints at all. He ran his race. “Bluegrass Cat, I guess he ran back to his 2-year-old form finally, Earlier in the year, everybody thought he was the horse to beat in the Derby.

    “I had fun. Now I can say it, I had a good time. The horse made us proud.”

    [b]TOM ALBERTRANI, trainer of[/b] [url="http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2006/derby_coverage/derby_entrants/sweetnorthernsaint/"][color=#0000ff]SWEETNORTHERNSAINT[/color][/url](7th) - Far from discouraged by Sweetnorthernsaint’s seventh-place Derby finish, trainer Michael Trombetta was looking forward to returning to Maryland to prepare his Illinois Derby winner for a rematch with Barbaro in the Preakness Stakes.

    “If he’s healthy, I’d love to go,” the Maryland-based trainer said Sunday morning. “I think he ran a good race. The winner ran an awesome race and deserves the accolades, but I’d like to try it again.”

    Trombetta said he was “shocked” to see the late action that suddenly put Sweetnorthernsaint in the favorite’s role for the 132nd Run for the Roses.

    “When I saw that we were favorite, I said, ‘Why me?’” he quipped. Trombetta was also a bit surprised to see Sweetnorthernsaint drop back to 12th in the early going of the Derby. “He’d never been that far back, I was impressed at the move he made on the backstretch,” said Trombetta of his colt’s advance from 12th to third. “After he made up all that ground, he just got a little tired. He didn’t get an ideal trip, but I’m not the only one who can say that.”

    [b]D. WAYNE LUKAS, trainer of SIMON PURE (Not entered in the Derby)[/b] - Trainer D. Wayne Lukas, said that Simon Pure, fourth in the Arkansas Derby in his previous start and owned by the Robert and Beverly Lewis Trust, may be headed to Baltimore. “I want to wait a week and see what shakes out; who is going and who is not,” Lukas said. “At this point, he is probable (for the Preakness), or I could run him on the undercard (in the Sir Barton).”

    [/size][/font]
    Last edited by JumbalayaJet; 05-07-2006 at 03:42 PM.

  15. #55
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    it would be very cool if Barbaro is the real deal and challenges the Triple Crown... I would love to see that happen

  16. #56
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    [QUOTE=JumbalayaJet]

    Trainer Bob Baffert knew his horses were in trouble as soon as he reached the paddock and noticed Barbaro before he was saddled by Michael Matz for his dominating Derby score Saturday.

    “I saw him in the paddock, and I told Michael Matz, ‘I hope he’s a turf horse,’” Baffert quipped. “He looked like a man amongst boys in the paddock. Michael Matz did a great job with that horse. What a horse. What a specimen.”

    Baffert soon learned that Barbaro was a “spectacular” horse on dirt, as well as grass, over which he had won his first three career races.

    “When they’re that good on grass (and dirt) - John Henry was that way - they’re freaks of nature,” Baffert said.[/QUOTE]
    Great Stuff Jumba, I love reading the trainers insights because these guys are not into hype

    Two things struck me about Baffert's comments ... in no way am I comparing the two, one is the Greatest racehorse who ever lived in my view, so its unfair to compare any animal to BIG RED, but here's what came to mind when I read Baffert's comments and it wasn't just John Henry

    1. Secretariat was the same type of physical specimen ... he wasn't only [I][B]moving like a tremendous machine[/B][/I], he looked like a [B][I]tremendous machine[/I][/B] as well ... same deal, made other world class racehorses look like ponies

    2. I recalled Secretariat's last ever race on Grass and there wasn't a dimes worth of difference, he was every bit as dominant on Grass as he was on dirt ... if he never raced on dirt in his career and ran exclusively on Grass, he'd probably be known as the Greatest Grass runner of all-time ... so when Baffert eluded to the [I][B]freakish nature[/B][/I] of horses that can dominate on either surface, and when he eluded to the scary dimensions of Barbaro just as a physical specimen ... well, I don't believe there ever was or ever will be a horse that could beat Secretariat on his best day, PERIOD, but this horse does look and run like a freak

    On that note I do see what Baffert sees .. that was a breathtaking performance, and while he did run an impressive time as well, that was without ever even tasting the whip .. this beast not only won in a rout, he did it in a GALLOP :eek:
    Last edited by Green Jets & Ham; 05-07-2006 at 06:46 PM.

  17. #57
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    Just too much traffic for Brother Derek. In a thin field I think he is certainly the horse to beat. I really want to see him go head to head with Barbaro.

    I am pulling to see a triple crown winner though.

  18. #58
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    [QUOTE=BergenJet]

    Just too much traffic for Brother Derek. In a thin field I think he is certainly the horse to beat. I really want to see him go head to head with Barbaro.

    I am pulling to see a triple crown winner though.[/QUOTE]
    If Brother Derek went head-to-head with Barbaro in a match race I think he'd get his doors blown off

    Barbaro is too much horse .. the best BD can hope for is to skip the Preakness and hope he catches a spent Barbaro in the Belmont .. or if he decides to take Barbaro on in the next two legs, hope Barbaro has a bad trip in one of the two

    But IMO if you put both of these horses on the same track, with no other horses, both have four weeks between races, Barbaro makes minced-meat out of Brother Derek

    I think Baffert has it right, BJ .. this horse is a freak .. I don't know if he's a Superhorse, that's what we'll soon findout, but I already know he's a freak

    People who really know horse racing know that what he did in the derby was even more incredible than it seemed

    I'm not talking about the margin of victory alone, biggest in 60 Years, by former TC Winner "Assault", but HOW he won by such a rout ... that margin of victory was awesome under any circumstances, but that he was able to win by that wide of a margin [B]without ever feeling the whip[/B] is almost inconceivable ... that blowout was done in a Gallop :eek:

    Lastly, if you look at his clock time it was TOP 10 all-time for the derby ... #9 Overall ... but it wasn't that much off the derby record {Secretariat}, about two seconds {or less}, and if Prado goes to the whip he might have challenged that time, or at least cracked the TOP 5 ... that's why Barbaro was even more amazing than it seems

    Though in fairness, I don't believe Ron Turcotte ever used the whip on Secretariat in the derby either ... I'd have to go back and look at it, but I believe Turcotte had his whip put away as well ... so its conceivable that BIG RED could have set an even more unbreakable record in the derby

    In short, I don't believe he could have beaten RED's time even if he did feel the whip, but I do believe he'd have taken it from #9 All-Time to TOP 5 All-Time, maybe as high as #2
    Last edited by Green Jets & Ham; 05-08-2006 at 05:04 AM.

  19. #59
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    [B]Various excerpts ... NY Post, NY Daily News, etc.[/B]

    ============

    Yesterday morning at Churchill - as Barbaro grazed outside his barn, looking fresh as a daisy with no hint he'd just run one of the fastest (2:01.1) mile-and-a-quarters in Derby history - Mike Matz was even more candid, with a confidence bordering on cocky.

    [COLOR=Blue]"We have to take it one step at a time," he said. "But this is a terrific horse, with tremendous ability. If I told you I didn't think in the long haul we can win the Triple Crown, I'd be lying." [/COLOR]

    Hey, it's not bragging if you can do it.

    ============

    Trainer Steve Asmussen, who ran two horses in the Derby, won't be back for another try in the Preakness.

    [COLOR=Blue]Amussen said Barbaro's dominant effort is worthy of Triple Crown discussion.

    "It's impossible not to imagine that he might be good enough to do the unthinkable," Asmussen said. "I don't want to mention it. I don't want to jinx it."[/COLOR]

    ===========

    Barbaro hadn't even crossed the finish line in Saturday's 132nd Kentucky Derby when most in the near-record crowd of 157,536 at Churchill, and millions more watching on television, thought as one: [COLOR=Red]He's going to win the Triple Crown.[/COLOR]

    [COLOR=Blue]"He won the derby by as much as [B]Secretariat[/B], [B]Seattle Slew[/B] and [B]Spectacular Bid[/B] combined," Hall-of-Fame trainer Nick Zito said yesterday.

    "What does that tell you?

    Does Barbaro look good enough to win the Triple Crown?

    No Question about it."[/COLOR]

    ==========

    Only four horses have won the Derby by a wider margin than Barbaro's 61/2 lengths. Two of them, Whirlaway and Assault, are among the 11 immortals to sweep the Triple Crown.

    Only Seattle Slew accomplished that monumental task undefeated; Barbaro, now 6-for-6, stands poised to join him.

    "All week I said he's got something going for him," said Zito. "He hasn't lost yet. He doesn't know how."

    ===========

    "I was talking to Bob Baffert this morning and said I don't see everybody this morning knocking down the door to get their entry into the Preakness," said trainer Wayne Lukas, who didn't have a horse in the Derby but is considering the Preakness for Simon Pure, [COLOR=Red]with second money in mind.[/COLOR]

    [COLOR=Blue]"I don't have any grandiose ideas that I can beat that horse. You'd have to be blind to think you're going to go over {to Pimlico} and upset him."[/COLOR]

    ============

    At the press conference after the Derby, trainer Michael Matz suggested that Barbaro's light racing schedule so far this year - the Derby was just his second start in 13 weeks - was designed with the Triple Crown in mind.

    Barbaro's trainer, Michael Matz, does not appear too worried. Always serene, smiling, modest yet confident in his horse, he said yesterday, "The Triple Crown is a very difficult task, so we planned to give him one race at a time. We looked at the big picture, not just one race."

    [COLOR=Blue]In short, from the outset Matz and his stable mapped out a strategy to go after the whole Triple Crown, not just the Derby. That's how highly they regarded Barbaro from the beginning.[/COLOR]

    ============

    Barbaro, now 6-for-6, came out of the Derby in Great shape. Exercise rider Peter Brette told trainer Mike Matz that Barbaro was feeing so good on Sunday that "you could enter him in a race tomorrow."

    =============

    [COLOR=Red]Is he a Superhorse?[/COLOR]

    "We hope so," said trainer Mike Matz. "He still has to prove it, but he's had a pretty good career so far."

    "We'll just try to keep him at this level for the next two races and hopefully we'll have a famous horse." ;)

    ============

    [SIZE=5][COLOR=Red]AND FINALLY!![/COLOR][/SIZE] :eek:

    [B]NY DAILY NEWS

    By Vic Zeigel[/B]

    Leaving the Churchill Downs backstretch the morning after the Derby, you decide to visit with Barclay Tagg, whose barn is closest to the exit. Not that the trainer loves a cassette recorder near his face - the best of Barclay wouldn't fill a shot glass - but it can't hurt to seek out one more opinion about Barbaro, the romping Derby winner.

    All of a sudden, you're listening to the greatest compliment you will hear on a race track - one word, 11 letters, almost always used in history discussions or bar room arguments.

    First there was a race for 2-year-olds six months ago and then there was the word. Tagg was at the Laurel track last November, watching Barbaro in the Laurel Futurity, a grass stake that drew a field of 13. It was his second race, and came seven weeks after he had broken his maiden at Delaware Park, famous for its slot machines.

    Barbaro was a comfortable second for most of the race, and then the jockey asked for a little something more. The horse took off, just the way he did in the Derby, in front of a few more people, and finished eight lengths in front. We're getting close to the word.

    "He looked like a real machine," Tagg said. "He looked like a Triple Crown winner. I never saw a horse run with such enthusiasm. Not since" - here it comes, the word - "Secretariat."

    Compare a horse to Secretariat and people think you're an amateur. If it's a horse you own you're marked down as a dreamer. Tagg, who won the '03 Derby with Funny Cide, is 68. He sent out his first winner in 1972. Enthusiasm is not his middle name. He doesn't bubble.

    But here he was, saying what so many horse people must have been thinking. Oh, maybe not the Secretariat comparison, it's still a little early, but close enough. Barbaro, unlike Secretariat, came into the Derby undefeated, and now he's 6-for-6. Secretariat, the 1973 Triple Crown winner, is still Secretariat, the horse for all time. But what if ...

    "He is what he is, a very good horse," said Peter Brette, Barbaro's assistant trainer. "We're not scared of anybody, that's for sure."

    Brette exercised the young Barbaro and after going around and around, "He had such a long stride I thought my arms were six inches longer. Every work was better than his last."

    They started him on the grass because his poppa, Dynaformer, sends out turf winners.

    "After his first race," an 8-1/2 length score, "I asked myself, 'Can he be this good?' After the second, the Laurel Futurity, I said, 'He may be this good.'" After he won his third turf race, the Tropical Park Derby by almost four, "I said, 'He is that good.'"

    Only one question left: Was he that good off the grass?

    They were planning to find out in the Grade III Holy Bull at Gulfstream, the first week in February. But the sloppy track that day made trainer Mike Matz think about scratching him. Brette urged Matz to run, because they were aiming at the Derby dirt, and time was running out. So Barbaro ran, won by three-quarters of a length, waited eight weeks and was back on dirt in the million-dollar Florida Derby, a Grade I.

    He was just behind the leader and, for probably the first time, jockey Edgar Prado had to push the button more than once. "He idled on the lead and Edgar got after him," Brette said. The margin at the finish was a half-length in front of Sharp Humor, a New York-bred (who ran 19th of 20 in the Derby).

    That gave his crew five weeks to prepare for the Derby. Too long between races, people wailed. (The media crowd counts as people, don't they?) Needles was the last Derby winner, 50 years ago, to take that much time off. But Matz didn't care and Barbaro wasn't chalking off the days in his stall.

    His one workout on the quirky Churchill track was brilliant. A week before the race he covered four furlongs in a blazing 46 seconds and impressed the other trainers. The Derby underlined that impression. We're talking Triple Crown here.

    So it's on to the Preakness, and then the Belmont, two demanding races in five weeks, and all he has to do is do it again. Do what Secretariat did.
    Last edited by Green Jets & Ham; 05-08-2006 at 05:36 AM.

  20. #60
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    Not so fast, Ham. He's the goods for sure, but the trainers of Sweetnorthernsaint and Brother Derek aren't scared off, saying they want another crack at Barbaro*. Brother Derek had a MISERABLE trip and still almost got 2nd. Put him on the lead and [i]I guarantee[/i] Barbaro will have a hard time getting by him. SNS will also appreciate the tight turns at Pimlico. With a smaller field these two should get a good trip. If he wins the Preakness, Barbaro will definitely get the Triple Crown. I'm very very impressed, but not ready to crown him king just yet.

    I'll put this over in the Everything Else forum since the Preakness is still a couple weeks away. It's a great topic, though and I hope everyone still participates in the thread.

    *Think it was in the Post, but I'm too tired right now to find a link. The hedges are trimmed, yay.

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