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Easter Bunnette bears a striking resemblance to her daughter Havre de Grace (Saint Liam), who races today against a short field in the New Orleans Ladies’ Handicap, race #9 at Fair Grounds.

Racing Beat: February 20

Psst… Derby Handicap Contest people… Fair Grounds has posted the Risen Star field for Friday early if you want to get a head start ;)

I realized yesterday that I have failed to pick the winner of every single three-year-old Derby prep so far, despite being on fire for the two-year-old preps. I AM WALLOWING IN MISERY! Union Rags, please don’t be the next glorious prospect to fail… I may die… To be fair though, a number of those races were run disastrously! Picks today for the Southwest Stakes: Cyber Secret and Castaway. (Edit: Oh wait, I did pick Alpha to win the Withers… maybe there’s hope!)

Haters gonna hate: the NYRA shot down the short-lived idea of anyone coloring Hansen's mane or tail like an M&M in time for the Gotham Stakes, stating it fell under a potentially “unfair advantage” equipment change ruling. Judging by the outcry, you'd think Dr. Hansen suggested that he wear a bonnet in the race. There’s always Photoshop.

Havre de Grace has a new little sister by Tiznow, likely to be sold just like the two-year-old colt Brabbham by Bernardini. Easter Bunnette, the dam of all, is scheduled to go to Medaglia d’Oro next… WAIT… someone NOT going to Bernardini?! What is this witchcraft??

I see a lot of stallion ads boasting auction figures, and I would just like to ask the world WHY, OH WHY is someone paying out the nose for an Unbridled’s Song? Or a Harlan’s Holiday? I see their progeny win from time to time, but by the millions spent on them you’d think they were the next A.P. Indy or something!

I loved Sabercat from the get-go after seeing images of him at the Breeders’ Cup, but now I have another Bluegrass Cat contender to add to the list: Michael Matz trainee Teeth of the Dog.

Any future historical films that may shoot at Santa Anita Park will have a hard time explaining the Zenyatta statue set to be erected this fall.

Speaking of Santa Anita filming, I’m in a bit of a slump watching HBO’s Luck. It’s a little slowly paced, and then— except for a few moments— it covers the mostly negative aspects of horse racing, which is not what I find entertaining. I expected them to do this, sadly.

If Havre de Grace, Awesome Feather, and Royal Delta all make it to the gate of the March 31 Rampart Stakes at Gulfstream, the purse is going to be $1 million. It will also result in self-abuse, as I kick myself for the umpteenth time for having to leave Florida.

I was honestly waiting for this news to break: sprinter Rodman is retired from racing. He was fast all right, but the way they were moving a now seven-year-old horse from one distance to another without much success whispers things in your ears. New York breeders will probably keep him.

I like a horse that has what I consider in watching their particular racing career to be grit. That’s a stallion I’m liable to go after, not necessarily the most popular stallion.

Breeder Nancy Dillman on her choice of pairing Saint Liam with Easter Bunnette, ultimately producing champion Havre de Grace.

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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