Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Breeders' Cup

Wise Dan
It's kind of like horseplayer Christmas. A couple weeks ago, I got to see Wise Dan mow down the Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland. He was in the same race that I saw last year, but Gio Ponti stole the show. I hadn't realized how imposing he was, or maybe I'm just grafting that onto him. I'm more excited to see him run in the Mile and take on England's Excelebration, not to mention Animal Kingdom, than any other race this weekend. It's funny how the Mile has come to be such a big race. Is it the perfect mix of American speed and European surface. The international aspect makes it great.

It isn't a truly international championship, not yet anyway. But it's trying, and part of that effort is the ban of lasix in 2YO races. And that's caused a few trainers to boycott, though not really all that many, just the loudmouth Mike Repole who really did have much to withold, and seems to threaten boycott over anything that doesn't go his way. Still American trainers aren't all that happy with the ban that keeps America in step with Europe. Then there's European trainers who don't like California Dirt and Turf, which are speed-friendly, full of kickback (the dirt) and All-American. Next year lasix will be banned in all races and the venue remains the same. So the BC might not be making anyone happy and may simply have to be resolute in that it's doing the right thing, but do we really have a scintillating Classic this year with Game On Dude proving or not proving he can win at Santa Anita? I kinda like Mucho Macho Man, but my picks are to come later. One of the benefits of Breeders Cup is that there's no need to scrounge for value. There's money in simply finding the winner. And my wagering strategy will be simple: to have fun and watch some great racing.