December 3, 2007

Interesting that four of the seven $300,000 yearlings at Harrisburg were actually by Perretti stallions. Two of them Bedtime Song and D Liteful Hanover were by first crop trotters Windsong’s Legacy and Revenue which bodes well for each one. The other pair Touchdown Town (Graceful Touch) and A Starlet Form (My Starlet) are by the mainstay stallion leader Muscles Yankee- each from a Perretti Mare.

In addition, VENICE MENACE the sales topper pacing colt at $280,000 was from the Perretti mare Mattaroni while the most expensive pacer overall Rarified Hanover happens to be a full sister to Rocknroll Hanover.

Kind of keeps things in the PERRETTI family…

Noticed this language on the front cover of the Black Book Past performances second edition in which is stated

‘The following past performance lines have been supplied by the U S T A and are current from their records as of a certain date”.

Directly underneath that statement which in itself seems rather self explanatory- looms a disclaimer stating: “WARNING: These race lines are not official” Apparently this is done because the reproduced lines may or may not contain pertinent data also found on the eligibility papers.

Most significant here is how that the sales company commendably chose to protect prospective purchasers by advising that these published race lines be verified for accuracy! Conversely one wonders why racetrack programs don’t protect prospective bettors by illuminating the realities and/or pitfalls of wagering on elimination races via similar disclosure type language. This would clarify that horses in a given elimination race are seeking to qualify for some lucrative future event and accordingly may or may not be pulling out all stops to win THIS particular event.

In some cases, winners get to pick their post positions for the final, in other cases, its either an open draw or a structured draw where elimination winners draw for the first two or three positions –whichever is applicable and so on down the line.

We do know how the NFL is super strict as to accurately declaring projected starters as probable, questionable doubtful etc, so that their unsanctioned bettors can at least make their unsanctioned plays armed with as much information as possible.

Dave Mattia’s USTA website commentary about Snow White’s horse of the year aspirations bought back memories of season 1975 when Savoir prevailed over Silk Stockings in balloting that some thought was a miscarriage of justice.

The argument back then was that while Savoir was indeed a deserving and WORTHY FFA trotting champion winning the Roosevelt International amongst other things, he was not necessarily the greatest FREE-FOR-ALLER to have trotted down the pike. Whereas Silk Stockings attained stratospheric levels seldom if ever approached by any filly of her age and gait and arguably was as great if not better than any pacing filly to have preceded her. Moreover, her closest rival Tarport Hap would certainly make everybody’s all time greatest roster but that year, Silk was clearly the Queen.

This year’s balloting offers several worthy candidates including Donato Hanover, Dewycheatumnhowe and Snow White. Of those, Donato must be ranked AMONG the greatest trotting 3-year-olds of any era. Certainly a case could be made that Dewycheatumnhowe is among the better 2-year-olds trotters to be seen lately although one need only go back to last year to cite a 2-year-old trotting colt of comparable stature. On the other hand Snow White seems the undisputed BEST 2-year-old trotting filly of this or any era and arguably the best “filly” of any breed since Ruffian.

Thus the question becomes does being a divisional best of all years super cede being an acknowledged divisional best of a single year in horse of the year balloting.


Enjoyed Dean Hoffman’s illuminating description of the current plight of New York OTB as heading towards doomsday-especially the quotes from the New York Mayor and the authoritative New York Times. OTB was a questionable venture from inception, although modern day offshoot operations like FAVORITES of Woodbridge, New Jersey seem to have gotten it right. Perhaps a handful of FAVORITES type simulcast parlors strategically sprinkled about the five boroughs would be more suitable towards satisfying contemporary requirements

That the Monticello casino is somewhat less than profitable is hardly a shock. Most remotely acquainted with gambling realities recognize the inevitability of loss syndrome which dictates that since the pool of existing customers ultimately must lose, there’d better be a significant pool of potential replacement customers in the surrounding areas.
In short, LOCATION…

Do endorse Andy Cohen’s Breeders Crown timing sentiments as the post thanksgiving date is so contrary to the spirit of what a championship series is supposed to be.

To reiterate: Have long felt that the Crowns should emulate the Cups isolating the 2-year-olds but combining the 3’s and ups in what would truly be a championship venue.
Certainly the sight of Curlin prevailing at Monmouth goes a long way towards establishing his championship credentials while Bernardini lost little luster the year before when it was established just how good his 4-year-old conqueror Invasor really was in the Dubai World Cup.

Read in Chris Wittstuck’s column the item illustrating some auction houses requiring registration of prospective bidders which gives an identity to every bidder and would thereby provide an audit trail for those who actually bid on a horse or item thus eliminating farm employees from “bidding up prices”.

While rather noble in theory it conversely fails to address the practice some buyers employ of telegraphing intentions to other prospective buyers thus inhibiting competitive bidding by those who then conclude the horse in question is unreachable

Bob Marks



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