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The gray Cozzetti works a bullet at Churchill Downs preparing for the 2012 Preakness Stakes (I).

The gray Cozzetti works a bullet at Churchill Downs preparing for the 2012 Preakness Stakes (I).

i could tell by his pink nose xD also, i had a question about cozzetti. on his HRN profile, it says on his progeny 'The Caller' and that horses pedigree says Cozzetti is his father, but isn't Cozzetti still active and not gone to stud?

Asked by miny00ngi

HRN: the kingdom of Wiki-esque inaccuracies when it comes to horse racing.

He’s definitely still racing. I researched “The Caller” on Pedigreequery.com and he’s by Cozzene, who is the same sire as Cozzetti, so I’m thinking somebody must have made an oops editing that particular entry.

COZZETTI FOR HORSE OF THE YEAR.

is that cozzetti in your avatar?

Asked by miny00ngi

Why yes it is!

Quick Saturday Picks

BECAUSE I HAVE NO TIME BUT WANT TO LOOK AT ALL THE RACES GOING ON TODAY!

Alabama Stakes

I just did a quick looksy for the sake of the Fantasy Handicapping Contest. A lot of things could happen here as all fillies (but one I believe) stretch out to 10 furlongs for the first time. I love Grace Hall who is tops here, but did not like how she fared with the Kentucky Oaks so I’m looking at fillies who can keep doing well a little further. Ultimately, I went with the $10 exacta box on Sea Island and Questing [GB], but Zo Impressive could also be up there too. #indecisiveness

1) Questing [GB] 2) Sea Island 3) Zo Impressive

Sword Dancer Invitational

Pace could make this one very tricky, and some very good horses fill out the field for this 1 1/2 mile chomper. I’ve liked Turbo Compressor a while on the turf, but he just had too easy a race setting the pace in the Colonial Turf Cup, which I doubt he’ll be allowed again. Horses like Newsdad need time to improve, and others like Al Khali and Brilliant Speed aren’t at their best form. I picked Tahoe Lake [BRZ] as the value pick back in the Man o’ War (he finished third), so I’ll put him up here again with Point of Entry, who has been simply too good to doubt.

1) Point of Entry 2) Tahoe Lake [BRZ] 3) Turbo Compressor

Secretariat Stakes

My heart screams for a Cozzetti win, but alas, Silver Max will be hard to best. However, he comes into some really good horses here including Summer Front and will be breaking from the far outside post to try to jet to the lead all alone again. Shipper Bayrir [FR] also looks tough hot off a Group 2 win… but there can only be one in this tough field…

1) Silver Max 2) Summer Front 3) Bayrir [FR]

Racing Beat: July 15

The unexpected retirement of Caleb’s Posse has me looking for a new best sprinter. Just hearing that Shackleford, who just barely bested Caleb in the Met Mile (I), was legitimately tired for the first time following the race which featured a duel between the two, makes me proud to see such tenacity between two excellent dirt milers. We’ll miss ya, Caleb.

The Travers logo has been revealed!

I didn’t know horses liked to go canoeing…

Can I’ll Have Another replicate a similar horse’s success in Japan (Sunday Silence)? Winner of two legs over a more popular rival, flawed conformation, cheap auction purchase, generally unwanted in North American breeding?

If you haven’t heard the one about the Asmussen mares turning up at a kill auction recently, you need to Google that one.

Taking bets now for how many Bernardinis will make the Breeders’ Cup races this year. Also, taking bets for a side pool that win or lose, the stud fee for 2013 will not drop.

Guess I probably won’t get to see Shackleford before he retires… the blaze face’s heading for the Forego Stakes (II).

I looked up Rattlesnake Bridge this week… he had a 3-furlong breeze in :37 on June 18 at Belmont. Maybe a Saratoga return?

Seriously Santa Anita? Stop trying to reinvent yourself by renaming races. Now I have no idea which one is which! This is dumb!

How Malibu Moon (2012 fee: $70,000) horses sell for so much at auction, I’ll never know… why not consider “middle market” sires more often like Include ($12,500) and Proud Citizen ($10,000) who are doing a hell of a lot better at the races?

Will the feds finally step in after the steady stream of (mostly) bullshit articles from The New York Times? On that note, I wish horse racing was like playing games— cheaters banned for life.

I don’t think putting Hansen in the West Virginia Derby (II) as opposed to the richer Haskell (I) is a bad move at all. Let him mentally mature and test the waters post-Derby there before facing off against Bodemeister. I wonder if they’ve considered tossing Dominguez at this point.

Alex Brown Racing (a website that gained popularity as a source for all things Barbaro for his fans) now has its own podcast of sorts. Naturally, being an awkward person, I have veered away from participating and or creating podcasts. Plus mine would go something like this: “OH MA GAWD HOW CUTE IS COZZETTI? HOW ABOUT ATIGUN? RAAAAAAGSY!” Repeat for 60 minutes.

While I didn’t have her down to win (rooting for Izzy Rules), I’m glad Switch is Breeders’ Cup-bound after the A Gleam (II) yesterday. She gave one of the most memorable performances up against Zenyatta, after all.

Tweet o’ the Week:

My face when I see Cozzetti

HE’S TRYING TURF NEXT CAN YOU BELIEVE IT!

By the grandstand the first time…
© Merlinoftheroundtable

By the grandstand the first time…

© Merlinoftheroundtable

Bodemeister Seeks Vengeance in Preakness

Eleven horses complete the fourteen available slots for the second leg of the Triple Crown, with many saving steam for the arduous Belmont Stakes (I) in June while others will try to upset Derby winner I’ll Have Another and his punchy rival, Bodemeister. The chestnut champ has the record and strategy to win, but many have considered blaze-faced Bode to be the best horse overall. Adding to the pile, Creative Cause ran arguably the best race in the Kentucky Derby and there’s little room to suggest Went the Day Well won’t be a threat.

It all boils down to who you like… Shackleford led throughout last year’s Preakness to defeat a closing outside horse in Animal Kingdom. Rachel Alexandra also set a furious pace to win in 2009. Will Team Bode have its day or can the Cookie Monster roll right by again?

$1 million Preakness Stakes (I) - 3-Year-Olds. 1 3/16 miles on dirt at Pimlico. Post Time: Saturday, May 18 at 6:18pm EST

[Post Position, Horse - Jockey, Trainer - Summary, Opinion in italics]

1) Tiger Walk - Kent Desormeaux, Ignacio Correras - A horse with some “tinkering” problems this year, the Tale of the Cat colt managed to hit the board once in the Withers (III), and has had a bad habit of becoming distracted or just not properly engaged when it counts. He swaps riders with Dullahan out, picking up Desormeaux and the tricky rail slot. Works have been pleasing at Pimlico, and this horse is raring to go. Experience is a big dead weight against him.

2) Teeth of the Dog - Joe Bravo, Michael Matz - The Bluegrass Cat colt has been a focal point of mine lately, mustering a strong third in the Wood Memorial (I) at long odds. His owner insisted upon a ship to the Preakness over the Peter Pan Stakes (II) last weekend, and trainer Matz is lukewarm about his chances. While I dislike Matz’s opinion of his odds, this puppy has some bite behind his bark with improving speed figures every race and he is an ace at routing. Breezes have been good at Fair Hill and he’s never been off the board in 4 starts.

3) Pretension - Javier Santiago, Chris Grove - The hometown horse, the Bluegrass Cat colt beat a small field to win the Canonero II Stakes over 1 1/16 miles at Pimlico, but a field that included the talented My Adonis. It was his best race this year after some very jumbled finishes in the Gotham (III) and Illinois Derby (III). The track win is nice, but he’ll have some big class hurdles. Bodemeister will probably want to haggle with him setting the pace.

4) Zetterholm - Junior Alvarado, Rick Dutrow - Silver Train babies have been doing super lately (ahem, Silver Max!), and this colt is no exception since switching over to the Dutrow barn. Winner of 3 of 4 starts this year, he won the mile-long Patsyprospect Stakes easily enough and has been training to stretch out. I like Dutrow horses… in New York. I also like newcomers… but not in G1 classics.

5) Went the Day Well - John Velazquez, Graham Motion - The Proud Citizen colt won the Spiral (III) easily enough, and then suffered a bad trip in the Kentucky Derby (I) but still mustered enough in the stretch to finish a very promising 4th. Cool connections and a rapidly rising improving cycle put WTDW at the top of the list. Can he keep on improving and get a decent trip? Probably, but I like this horse at a farther distance…

6) Creative Cause - Joel Rosario, Mike Harrington - Trakus figures catapult the Giant’s Causeway colt to winning the Kentucky Derby last out, where he was a grinding 5th. He appears to have recovered well from that race, but will need proper positioning and a far superior trip to win. I’d also like him more if the blinkers went back on…

7) Bodemeister - Mike Smith, Bob Baffert - The superstar of the Kentucky Derby may have run 2nd, but he was 1st in many minds. The Empire Maker colt will likely try to contain his speed a bit once again, but seems fresh as ever at Pimlico where he should by all means have another decent shot at beating I’ll Have Another. You’d be foolish to leave him out of the mix with a :59 3/5 bullet, especially considering the best horses beaten in the Derby often spring back to win the Preakness!

8) Daddy Nose Best - Julien Leparoux, Steve Asmussen - The 10th place finisher in the Kentucky Derby and winner of the Sunland Derby (III) springs back for redemption, this time trading jocks for Union Rags rider Julien Leparoux. Slow, short-spurt works and word of mouth place DNB at the bottom of the pile; he’s just not ready to give his best and I would be shocked to see him finish up front should that trend continue through Saturday.

9) I’ll Have Another - Mario Gutierrez, Doug O’Neill - The Flower Alley colt will seek to extend his incredible win streak to 4. He was a strong and happy winner of the Kentucky Derby, but usually enjoys a long layoff between his races so this will be his first big test on such short notice. Pimlico has been kind to IHA’s residency while prepping for the race, so he’ll have everything tailored to fit. He’ll need to catch Bodemeister once again, and he’ll have to do it from that leering outer post that has troubled so many Preakness starters.

10) Optimizer - Corey Nakatani, D. Wayne Lukas - Trading jocks once again, the English Channel colt finished 11th in the Kentucky Derby and has really only fired impressively once this year in a close 2nd in the Rebel Stakes (II). Works have been decent enough, but this is a puzzling horse to say the least.

11) Cozzetti - Jose Lezcano, Dale Romans - The coquettish Cozzene colt has some of the best speed figs of the newcomers, and Dale Romans is confident that he will run a big one— Romans also suggested that before his slow rallying 4th in the Arkansas (I), but I will rest my case. A :58 4/5 bullet at Churchill makes this gray all the more appealing. The outside and class test (best start of the year was a 3rd in the paltry Tampa Bay) are his biggest foes.

Top Picks in Order:

1) Bodemeister

2) I’ll Have Another

3) Went the Day Well

4) Teeth of the Dog

Value Pick(s): Went the Day Well

Yes, I’ll be rooting for Cozzetti come Saturday, even though he failed to hang on to third and win me some money in the Arkansas Derby (I). (Photo by Tom Keyser)

Yes, I’ll be rooting for Cozzetti come Saturday, even though he failed to hang on to third and win me some money in the Arkansas Derby (I). (Photo by Tom Keyser)

I almost didn’t recognize Bodemeister without his blinkers yesterday, and boy was I proud to see him win so impressively. It really didn’t look like he was asked, and once again, I think the Arkansas Derby (I) has produced another horse for me to include in my top 2 or 3 to win the Big One in May. I wish Empire Maker was still in the United States…

I almost didn’t recognize Bodemeister without his blinkers yesterday, and boy was I proud to see him win so impressively. It really didn’t look like he was asked, and once again, I think the Arkansas Derby (I) has produced another horse for me to include in my top 2 or 3 to win the Big One in May. I wish Empire Maker was still in the United States…

Going to the Thoroughbred races, keeping "track" of the memories. Obsessively providing a comprehensive and personal glance at the sport of kings through original photography, handicapping analysis, editorials, and much more.

Tracks visited: Calder, Saratoga, Belmont, Suffolk, Aqueduct.


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