January 1, 2007

Is it the end of an era? Perhaps… There’s that 20 year-old winner’s circle presentation picture from July 26th, of 1986 illustrating 2-year-old Nadia Lobell in front and drawing clear in the $915,000 Sweetheart stake at The Meadowlands.

That’s what Sweethearts went for back then. Needless to say the collective entourage in the winner’s circle might not be that recognizable were the photo reprised in 2006 and sadly not everyone in that picture is still with us today.

Nor for that matter is Nadia Lobell.

The world champion race filly who amongst other things forecasted the ensuing explosions from her then first crop sire No Nukes succumbed to a severe case of laminitus and was euthanized on December 23rd. Nadia was not in foal at the time having dropped her 06 Red River Hanover filly a tad too late to be rebred hence the decision was made to breed her to Rocknroll Hanover in early 07.

A foal of 1984, Nadia Lobell would have been 23 years old in 2007.

Keep receiving positive feedback on the first crop Red River Hanover and dare we say it’s almost reminiscent of the early talk on the first crop of No Nukes way back when in the vein of perhaps an unexpected though noticeable similarity. No Nukes himself was considered a colt of unfulfilled destiny showing superstar speed on occasion but lacking the consistency to rank on a par with Niatross’ Cam Fella’s and Sonsam’s of his era. Likewise can be said for Red River Hanover who on North American Cup Night at Woodbine was perhaps as awesomely impressive as any colt in modern times shattering all existing Canadian speed records though his thereafter consistency left something to be desired. It’ll be interesting to follow the story as it further unfolds.

In response to Standardbred Canada’s survey on name changes, our position has always been and remains that once the named yearling is sold, the new owner has paid his money for and is therefore entitled to rename the individual as he sees fit. No matter how much we may have liked what we originally called it.

Here’s one for our legal eagles to guide us through. In that the driver has been convicted of accepting a bribe not to use his “best effort” and faces charges of conspiracy to commit grand theft which we assume is the actual act of not utilizing the best effort in order to affect the outcome, one wonders if the process of “racing easy” and/or merely qualifying for lucrative finals via half hearted attempts in eliminations does not constitute the very same thing? After all, the ultimate outcome of the event is similarly affected

While we’re touching on legalities, wouldn’t those in charge of accepting wagers on a legally sanctioned sporting event bear some fiduciary responsibility to those doing the wagering to warrant that all has been done in order to ensure that all contestants are indeed providing their ultimate “effort”?

Be this even remotely the case, then would they not bear a fiduciary responsibility to disclaim otherwise in obvious scenarios such as those above mentioned eliminations and cite on the program that contestants in these events need only finish wherever applicable in order to “qualify” for the final? That way the bettor is accordingly advised and his wagering integrity is at least protected.

By all means… Some are more important than others. That’s reality. Since the participants have long used certain events as stepping stone to other events, it seems somewhat archaic not to acknowledge via a coherent grading system

Congratulations to the Scarlet Knights (Rutgers football team) on their stellar season culminating in Texas Bowl rout of Kansas State. But then again didn’t we offer at least some form of tribute when we named the Pine Chip-Ruby Crown colt SCARLET KNIGHT?

Bob Marks



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