Thoroughbred Racing 2021

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skipaway

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Pegasus World Cup today on NBC at 4:30pm. I like Knicks Go.
Yesterday Oaklawn Park opened and the Smarty Jones for 3 yr olds was run.
Impressive performance by a non-Baffert horse named Caddo River
 

sk8pics

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Two great races. Knicks Go was amazing.

On a Facebook page for fans of California Chrome, (California Chromes Home), there is a long post about slaughter of thoroughbreds. A horse named Private Vow, who ran in Barbaro's Derby, was slaughtered this past summer in South Korea along with 4 of his offspring. Dortmund, who ran for Baffert along with American Pharaoh, was recently sold to South Korean owners without a buyback clause, according to this site. Knicks Go's owners? From South Korea.

There are currently efforts to get the South Korean racing authority clean up its act. I hope they do. And I hope Dortmund will be okay. Private Vow was 17; Dortmund is 9.
 

skipaway

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Two great races. Knicks Go was amazing.

On a Facebook page for fans of California Chrome, (California Chromes Home), there is a long post about slaughter of thoroughbreds. A horse named Private Vow, who ran in Barbaro's Derby, was slaughtered this past summer in South Korea along with 4 of his offspring. Dortmund, who ran for Baffert along with American Pharaoh, was recently sold to South Korean owners without a buyback clause, according to this site. Knicks Go's owners? From South Korea.

There are currently efforts to get the South Korean racing authority clean up its act. I hope they do. And I hope Dortmund will be okay. Private Vow was 17; Dortmund is 9.
I remember Private Vow. 😥
 

skipaway

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Today I bought shares in Monomoy Girl through MyRacehorse.com! It is a lease situation and I get a tiny, tiny, tiny portion of her winnings and can (through a lottery system) join other owners at the track on race days. Too fun! 🏇🏇🏇
 

sk8pics

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Today I bought shares in Monomoy Girl through MyRacehorse.com! It is a lease situation and I get a tiny, tiny, tiny portion of her winnings and can (through a lottery system) join other owners at the track on race days. Too fun! 🏇🏇🏇
I know some people who bought shares (microshares, of course!) in Authentic, and they won a lottery last week to visit his farm.

ETA: I’ve been watching the Derby coverage this afternoon. Crazy, close races! The last one before the Derby ended in a dead heat!
 

genevieve

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Tuned in to watch the Debry - horrified at the mostly maskless crowd, and also this:

ETA: I can't believe Mike Smith is still racing at 55. Feels like he's been racing since I started watching - not possible, that was the mid-1970s and he was ~10 - but he's been around forrrreeeever. :respec:
 
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sk8pics

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This was Mike Smith’s 27th Derby. :eek:

I agree with you about the crowd @genevieve. Many of them were way too close together even if they were outside. But Kentucky. :rolleyes: I hope it doesn’t become a super spreader evident.

But what a cool winner! Imagine buying a yearling for $1,000, selling him the following summer for $35,000 and thinking you did pretty well. And then that horse wins the Derby at 12-1. :eek: Brave and gutsy performance by Medina Spirit!
 

genevieve

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If that race had been a couple of lengths longer it could have been a 4-way tie. I could not believe Medina Spirit held everyone off. Great race.

And John Velasquez isn't much younger than Mike Smith - 49. Well done!
 

sk8pics

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Great story by Steve Haskin about how Medina Spirit came to Bob Baffert and won the Kentucky Derby. I sniffled my way through it.

Derby Recap: The Stuff of Dreams

"Sometimes you never know what is hidden behind a $1,000 sales slip. That pedigree no one was interested in more than two years earlier had once again come out in him. It was a pedigree inundated with horses who showed great courage and a willingness to fight. His sire that no one heard of won the 2015 Alysheba Stakes at Churchill Downs after a stretch-long battle in which he appeared to be beaten. But he lunged forward at the wire to stick his nose in front. Protonico is a son of Giant’s Causeway, arguably the gamest European horse in the past quarter of a century, winning five consecutive Group 1 stakes by under a length, including three by a head. In each race he refused to let the best horses in Europe get by him. And don’t forget his gutsy performance against the equally courageous Tiznow in the Breeders’ Cup Classic when his rider dropped the reins right before the wire, losing by a neck. Medina Spirit’s broodmare sire Brilliant Speed won the Blue Grass Stakes by the closest of noses; Brilliant Speed’s sire Dynaformer won two stakes by a nose and a half-length; and Dynaformer’s sire Roberto won the English Derby in the closest finish in the history of the race, outbattling eventual Arc de Triomphe winner Rheingold in a finish so close his rider Lester Piggott dismounted before it was official because he thought he has lost. Finally, in Medina Spirit’s tail-female family, his third dam is by Holy Bull, out of a Forty Niner mare. Holy Bull scored one of the gutsiest victories in the history of the Travers Stakes and Forty Niner was involved in nine photos, winning the Haskell and Travers by a nose, outgaming Seeking the Gold each time. That is the family you want in a street fight, and Medina Spirit has yet to let any horse pass him in the stretch.

And of course it doesn’t hurt having three doses of the legendary Secretariat in your pedigree though his three omnipotent daughters Weekend Surprise, Terlingua, and Secrettame. Has there ever been a wider chasm than the one between Secretariat and a $1,000 yearling purchase?"
 

Sarah

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Just saw this article....Baffert has too many positives and his excuses are getting hard to believe. 😥😡
Immediately after the derby one of my friends posted, “Congratulations to Mandaloun who will win the Kentucky Derby whenever Medina Spirit tests positive. Who will Baffert blame this time?”

I’ve never been a fan of Baffert (though I’ve loved some of his horses—Silverbulletday was one of my first favorites). He was also a jerk when I met him as a teen several times so I’ll hold that against him. Still, I never want to believe or see this stuff. I don’t root against horses because their trained by Baffert but I do root for them cautiously. This is too many times for it to be a coincidence. But, I’ll add, he’s NOT the only trainer out there with drug violations. Until the jockey club makes the penalties so horrific, people will continue to cheat...
 

skipaway

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Immediately after the derby one of my friends posted, “Congratulations to Mandaloun who will win the Kentucky Derby whenever Medina Spirit tests positive. Who will Baffert blame this time?”

I’ve never been a fan of Baffert (though I’ve loved some of his horses—Silverbulletday was one of my first favorites). He was also a jerk when I met him as a teen several times so I’ll hold that against him. Still, I never want to believe or see this stuff. I don’t root against horses because their trained by Baffert but I do root for them cautiously. This is too many times for it to be a coincidence. But, I’ll add, he’s NOT the only trainer out there with drug violations. Until the jockey club makes the penalties so horrific, people will continue to cheat...
He definitely is not the only one but he’s so exalted for his training acumen by the media that it makes me ill. Racing rules vary state to state and that makes punishment much more difficult.
 

Sarah

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He definitely is not the only one but he’s so exalted for his training acumen by the media that it makes me ill. Racing rules vary state to state and that makes punishment much more difficult.
He manages to have fall people in his stable too who must be very well paid in that they always seem to take the blame... or it’s tainted feed. It’s people like Baffert at the top that make the hard working people at the lower end of the sport look bad.

US Equestrian (USEF) struggles with drug use in the sport too. Harsh violations don’t fix things but make and hold more people accountable. Your horse tests positive? You are all responsible and will be suspended: trainer, owner, rider. It doesn’t matter if you are a catch rider and met the horse at the ring on the day of the show. You are just as responsible as the owner who pays bills from afar or the trainer who sees the horse daily. Before the groom took the fall but no more. I believe suspensions may be cumulative? It’s harsh if you are a 8 year old kid on a small pony but that is the deal in USEF competition. It’s still not strong enough.

The jockey club and the racing commotion in the US need to get on top on drug use and get harsh penalties. 3 strikes your out. 10 year bans. Something like that.
 

sk8pics

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How about we wait and see what the repeat test shows? I am not going to say he’s an angel, but sometimes mistakes are made.

I think in general racing needs to clean up their act in the U.S. A national governing body would be a step in the right direction.

As for Baffert in general, I think he has changed a lot from when he was younger. He has hundreds of horses that he is responsible for, and I’m sure a really huge number for his entire career. If he has 36 violations in a 40 year career, that doesn’t necessarily mean he is constantly doping all his horses.

Baffert has been very good to Old Friends in recent years. He gave $50,000 to them when Pharoah won the Belmont. And several of his horses have gone to Old Friends in their retirement —Silver Charm and Game On Dude are the two that come to mind. There are other horses that have been retired there that were run nearly to death by their connections; all Baffert’s horses arrived in reasonable shape. Of course, Silver Charm was at stud for a number of years so did not come directly from Baffert. But at 27 (or so) years of age, he will still run over to the fence if you call him. Game On Dude did come directly from Baffert, and he is one of the sweetest and kindest horses you can ever hope to meet, and he looked fantastic when he arrived.

I know none of this means that Baffert is innocent of this charge. I only share it to shed some light on some of his good behavior. I will be very disappointed if Medina Spirit’s second test also comes back positive. He’s such a scrappy little horse, I really like him.

And also I saw many terrible barns at the local track when I was volunteering with a networking group. Some people were trying their best, but others not so much. It was very obvious. So I’d say there could be bad apples at all levels of the sport.
 

skipaway

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Bloodhorse Article

Part of Baffert’s statement

Yesterday I was informed by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission that Medina Spirit allegedly tested positive for 21 picograms of betamethasone. I want to be clear on three points," the statement read. "First, I have seen it reported that betamethasone is a 'banned' substance. This is not true. Betamethasone is an allowable, therapeutic medication. Second, and more importantly, at no point in time has anyone in my barn or any of my veterinarians ever administered betamethasone to Medina Spirit. I do not know how betamethasone could have possibly gotten into Medina Spirit, but I do know it did not come from me. Therefore, I intend to thoroughly and transparently investigate the matter to determine how this could have happened. We will have the split sample analyzed and DNA testing performed. That will be the first step in the process.
 

Vagabond

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How about we wait and see what the repeat test shows?
How about we post what we want to say and let the Admins tell us when we have overstepped?

It is extremely unusual for the "B" sample to yield a different result from the "A" sample, and even if it yields the same result, it will not in and of itself say how the drug came to be in Medina Spirit's system.
If he has 36 violations in a 40 year career, that doesn’t necessarily mean he is constantly doping all his horses.
He has thirty-sx failed drug tests. The number of violations is lower. There is no way of knowing the number of times that potential violations that went undetected for one reason or another. Regardless, thirty-six failed drug tests is thirty-six too many.

Just in the last four years, however, Baffert has had at least four horses with very high profiles that failed drug tests:Triple Crown winner Justify, eventual Eclipse Award winner Gamine, multiple Grade I winner Charlatan, and now Medina Spirit. To have one such horse fail a drug test may be regarded as misfortune. To have four (or thirty-six) fail a drug test looks like something worse than carelessness.
 

Sarah

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I don’t like Baffert. I never have. I like Medina Spirit and several other horses he has trained. I also think you can be a terrible person and do good like donate to thoroughbred charities like old friends (and others—I believe Baffert has also donated to other TB charities).

Maybe the second sample will be be negative. Who knows. Won’t change my like for the horse, dislike for the trainer, and want for changes in the sport. And yes, there are wonderful top level trainers and wonderful low level trainers and awful low level and high level and everything in between. I just find that some people say bad stuff only happens at the lowest levels which certainly isn’t true.
 

Vagabond

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If the second part of the split sample also detects the anti-inflammatory medication, could it have been sabotage?

Dr. Mary Scollay, executive director of the Lexington, Ky.-based Racing Medication and Testing Consortium, explained why that is unlikely.

For one thing, she said in a phone interview with Horse Racing Nation: "The Derby horses have got security on them 24/7, starting from the morning of entry," which this year was on the Tuesday before the May 1 race.

"But grooms are allowed to go in and out of the horses' stalls. So if there's a product that's got betamethasone that the groom is using and the groom is unaware of it – the security officers can't possibly police for that. They can prevent unlicensed people or unaffiliated people from coming in contact with the horse. But if the substance is in the barn, unbeknownst to the staff, how do you prevent that exposure? That's a question mark.

On another front, the draw for the Preakness was postponed from today to tomorrow. IIRC, Mandaloun's connections weren't planning to enter him, but I would not be surprised if they changed their mind.
 

MacMadame

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Vagabond

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The ointment, called Otomax, was used to treat dermatitis on Medina Spirit’s hind end after his second-place finish in the April 3 Santa Anita Derby, Baffert said in the statement, which was released through his attorney. He said that he learned that the ointment contained betamethasone, a corticosteroid, on Monday, one day after announcing that Medina Spirit has tested positive for the substance after the Derby.

Baffert said he was following his veterinarian’s recommendation to apply the ointment daily “to give the horse relief, help heal the dermatitis, and prevent it from spreading.” It was applied once a day every day until the day prior to the Derby, Baffert said....

Baffert said in the statement that he would continue to contest the positive finding, which has not yet been confirmed in a split-sample test. He also said that Medina Spirit should not face a disqualification in the Derby because of the finding.
It's Baffert's responsibility to know what's in medications administered to the horses he trains. He should stop trying to escape discipline and instead accept the consequences of what he did.
 

Karen-W

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It's Baffert's responsibility to know what's in medications administered to the horses he trains. He should stop trying to escape discipline and instead accept the consequences of what he did.
If the horse was subject to WADA the "I didn't know the medicine my doctor gave me/the OTC medicine I took contained a banned substance" excuse wouldn't fly. Why does thoroughbred racing not have a similar standard?
 

Sarah

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There are so many topical meds/salves/ointments/poultices that test in the horse world. Whenever you buy something, you'll see comments in the item description about whether or not ingredients are in the FEI regulatory (FEI is not the same, but you get the idea) lists as people can be suspended for using the wrong liniment at the wrong time.

Examples 1, 2, vs 3 and 4
 
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