MUSCULAR week for Muscles Yankee with Mr. Muscleman almost
effortlessly setting an all time Canadian Standard of 1:51.1
in the Trotting Classic, and HOUSETHATRUTHBUILT commencing
defense 2004 filly of the year title with a handy debut
in a filly Classic division. She’ll have to deal with
Canadian champ Peaceful Way who was equally impressive in
the other filly division.
Muscles also accounted for a pair of Casual Breeze winners,
the most impressive being BLUR in 1:55.2 for Trond Smedshammer.
We’ll be taking an Andover Hall bother to Blur named
Don’t Blink Twice to Harrisburg in November. In addition
he had a quartet of NJSS winners including MUSCLE MEMORY
(Peace be with You) and HER
CULESE (Flirty Two) The Harrisburg group will also include
YANKQUILITY and TORREOGRAPHY full sister and brother to
Muscle Memory and Her Culese respectively.
MARK OF A SIRE
So often the true mark of a sire is when one of his headliners
falters for whatever the reason, and another one immediately
takes over which is precisely what happened with Artiscape
in the Woodbine Pacing Classics. Super daughter Rainbow
Blue (Vesta Blue Chip) was again dominant in 1:49.2 but
this year’s most prominent male pacer to date Maltese
Artist (Hula Dancer)) was somewhat less than that. However,
still another Artiscape offspring Escape The Wind (Chicole)
wound up wiring that stellar field in 1:48.3 as Maltese
Artist faded to fourth following a pocket trip More and
more it looks like Artiscape has entrenched as Artsplace’s
#1 siring son.
CONGRATULATIONS DEAN AND NICOLE.
There’s a changing of the guard at HOOFBEATS with
the very capable Nicole Kraft assuming the executive editor’s
position and long time pal and colleague Dean Hoffman assuming
the position as Director of Strategic Planning within the
USTA.. Two extremely bright minds and both should thrive
in their new roles!
Really enjoyed the June Hoof beats issue particularly those
discussions with Shapiro and Hoge and the Jerry Riordan
visitation. Riordan discussed at length differences and
similarities between American and Italian racing citing
preliminary entries as a major differential. Seems in Italy
trainers can enter races, survey the competition and scratch
in the event conditions are not favorable. That’s
similar to the thoroughbred method and there is merit to
what might be termed no malice scratching. While it would
be a bit of a paperwork pain, the end result from a betting
standpoint would be that horses are not forced into becoming
reluctant competitors. We all know the evils that stuff
Richard Shapiro and Bill Hoge offered some enlightening
commentary about returning fans to racetracks- required
reading for all of us.
Bill Hoge struck a huge chord citing how racing officials
failed to inquire why his attendance record dwindled from
constant to infrequent. Certainly can relate there having
spent about a quarter century in which the pursuit of the
next winner took precedence over anything else in life.
Can honestly cite when as Paul Simon so eloquently versed
“slip sliding away” from the nightly betting
and handicapping scene that the very next racing official
to inquire why-will indeed be the first! And with all those
Top Trotter, Orange Horse and OTB Blue Sheets selections,
there were times I had to be among the most influential
harness handicapping voices in New York.
So often it again it seems that the way it was back in
the glory days is the way it probably should be with the
emphasis tilted towards the sport rather than the business.
Certainly the way it’s evolved leaves much to be desired.
Is it true that the regular starter was not in the car for
that Classic fiasco which resulted in a second tier #12
horse Life Source starting on the gate crowding the designated
#2 Eaton Road Kill out of position?. The fallout from this
inspired protests from the ownerships of Life Source who
was disqualified after finishing second and Eaton Road Kill
who was declared a non starter due to the positional alterations.
Wonder if this unfortunate incident may ultimately prove
the catalyst towards the eventual abolition of tiers and
trailers. In this era of :26 quarters broken down to sometimes
sub :13 opening eighths all noses belong on the gate.
Not sure if it’s a chronic condition but Life Source
did require outrider assistance prior to actually embarking
for the starting gate and once underway was visibly headstrong
with driver George Brennan virtually parallel in the bike.
For the record Life Source finished second but was disqualified
for being out of position and placed last. Which understandably
invoked a protest. Unfortunately if allowed that would involve
a retroactive changing of finish which regardless of official
lapses does not occur in other sports. Moreover a retroactive
reversal is not applicable to the betting public whose tickets
become operative or inoperative the moment official results
are posted. They don’t change Super Bowls because
of missed calls and most players would agree they shouldn’t
change race results either. Some undoubtedly still have
the residuals from the Savilla Lobell affair way back when.
Help me Howard Beissenger! Who was that trotting colt of
yours taken down retroactively after it was determined an
official missed an on the spot call? Well remember the furor
resulting from that scenario and always felt you got a raw
Regardless of how justified any complaint may seem it is
still a disservice to those bettors whose tickets are no
longer redeemable after the fact.
Would seem that Woodbine which was once well over one second
slower than The Meadowlands is on a par these days if not
even faster. That was GROOVIE DAY, a Gothic Dream $40 claimer
winning the 13th race last Friday in 1:49 without being
more than tad urged- if at all. And get this. He took the
lead at the half in:54, hit three quarters in 1:21.4 and
drew out in:49. You see this at The Meadowlands in the early
races under summer daylight conditions but this was a lot
closer to midnight than it was to twilight..
Bet they’ll be watching Groovie Day next time he
AND MORE MUSCLES
MOTAOVATIONAL (Muscles Yankee-Super Dreamer) was impressive
Wednesday in 1:54 setting a New Jersey Sires Stakes record
for 3-year-old.trotting fillies. HER CULESE (Muscles Yankee-Flirty
Two) came along way to be 2nd. The next night MUSCLE BOUND
(Muscles Yankee- Habit) served notice he’ll be a force
to reckon with winning his NJSS colt division in 1:55.3.
About an hour earlier it was MUSCLE MEMORY (Muscles Yankee-Peace
be With You) again this time winning his second NJSS event
And today Friday, DIESEL DON (Muscles Yankee-Yankee Blondie)
won his qualifying debut by in 1:56.3
Several DREAM VACATIONS go in the Meadowlands Baby Races
including Jack Parker’s WILDWOOD DAYS (Flash Of Dignity)
Check him next week