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The Woodward came down to a duel between Moreno and winner Itsmyluckyday

The Woodward came down to a duel between Moreno and winner Itsmyluckyday

A beautiful caboose of maidens!: #2 Jimmy Soul (rail), #11 Read the Mirage, #3 Ironicus (in between), and #4 Justin Nyugen finish last in an Aqueduct maiden special weight.

A beautiful caboose of maidens!: #2 Jimmy Soul (rail), #11 Read the Mirage, #3 Ironicus (in between), and #4 Justin Nyugen finish last in an Aqueduct maiden special weight.

Anyone have jockey-related questions?

I’m fleshing out the interview outline for Lipsticks & Longshots. Do you guys and gals have anything in particular you’d like to know about race riding, becoming a professional jockey, or anything related to that?

Racing Beat: March 17

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day all! If you’re Irish, might I recommend betting today?

I get that he has a win streak going, but who on earth would supposedly offer $3 million for Vyjack? He’s a gelding and his trainer just got suspended for not one, but two doping offenses. I would have taken the offer.

The new Derby Hopefuls tee is being designed right now, with some 140 horses making the cut to have their name on the final product. I would have thought by now I would have a better idea of what horse(s) to illustrate, but I don’t. This may take a little longer…

Remember Champ Pegasus? He’s back at Santa Anita.

Yup, I pretty much called Verrazano going to the Wood… Pletcher is dividing and conquering with his surviving company. Unfortunately I am unlikely able to go because of work… I would be showing up for Normandy Invasion.

I hope to talk about the Dubai World Cup in a soonish post. I think Dullahan has a decent shot, but this year I find myself again liking Planteur [IRE]. We shall see.

I didn’t pay much attention to the Azeri (III) yesterday, and I’m sad now that I didn’t. Tiz Miz Sue was too serious a horse to go off at 9-1.

Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf winner Perfect Shirl (a daughter of Perfect Soul [IRE]) will be bred to More Than Ready for her first foal. I’ll be excited for that one to hit the grass.

I had Zaikov down on the February Derby Top 10, but removed him when the list of interesting prospects was getting too long. I eliminated a few others from that shortlist, mainly because they hadn’t raced yet.

In my down time, I’ve finally gotten around to watching Jockeys (on Netflix). The show premiered on Animal Planet while I was away at school and didn’t have a TV or anything. Crazy how much has happened since those episodes were filmed.

Salty Strike and Medaglia d’Oro… UNF! What’s up with some of my fave mares going to dis guy? (Better choice than Bernardini at any rate)

Maybe I should avoid liking horses until Derby Day. They all seem to throw in the towel. Here’s hoping Hear the Ghost doesn’t let me down. Glad to see Oxbow was still in the mix yesterday. Den’s Legacy could be a force, too. All three I have liked for a good while. A few others I have an eyeball on, including Departing.

Joyful Victory finally snags a G1. Crazy things do happen.

My girlfriend Dayatthespa is recovering from a cut on her tendon that was bad enough to need stitches. Come back soon to me, baby.

[Sad to say no “Tweet o’ the Week” picked out… icky schedule…]

In-Person Jockey Spectacles (Tee-hee, ha ha, get it)

Time for a silly post. I’m a bit worn out from all the serious topics and I could use the boost right now.

I’m somewhat infamous to people that know me for my bad eyesight. I often vow to get Lasik for myself once I graduate because I get tired of never getting to wear sunglasses (and see, that is), not getting to lay down on my side watching a movie, coping with dust and rain, and then ya know, there’s the thing where I apparently look like two different people with and without glasses. And no, I don’t think contacts are an option if you see the way I react when someone tries to put mascara on my lower lashes…

But anyway, I love our jockeys, and if you’ve never been to a track where many of them like to populate at once you are missing out. But, while getting to see many of the nation’s top riders, I made little mental notes on how getting to see them in-person was a mite different from seeing them on TV and in oodles of photos. What were the impressions? Did I need to look at my program with my bad eyesight? HMM…

  • John Velazquez - In my top list of favorites if not THE favorite of mine, Johnny V is easy to pick out for his bright and charismatic smile and seemed to beam even more around the throngs of railbirds.
  • Ramon Dominguez - A lot of railbirds can be found calling this guy’s name, and why not since he’s always at the top of the earnings list. He always looked super stern and focused.
  • Julien Leparoux - One can tell it’s Leparoux without looking down at the program surprisingly easily. He’s probably the palest rider in the parade and he’s got such unique bone structure in his face… dat French nose… He always seems cool and collected.
  • Mike Smith - Another hard-to-miss type with a serious expression on his face heading to post, often squinting in the afternoon sunlight.
  • Mario Guiterrez - I don’t know if he was just very alert and focused when I saw him or if he was really nervous and freaked out. Always looked appreciative of the fans.
  • Rosie Napravnik - Always looks the part of a super professional out there; you’d naturally expect some sort of emotional sway from a female, but Rosie doesn’t show a shred of anything but getting to business. You wouldn’t need to look at her record to know she’s tough as nails heading out there.
  • Jerry Bailey - I kind of came across him by accident on Belmont Day while trying to leave the grandstand area. I saw the broadcast tent and went “OMG! IT’S JERRY BAILEY!” *refrains from making a scene*

STOP EVERYONE!! IT’S JERRY BAILEY!

Is the Personal Ensign (I) getting a rep for being an upset stakes? Persistently upset Rachel Alexandra in the 2010 edition (approximately 23-1 odds, pictured) while Love and Pride triumphed over Royal Delta and It’s Tricky in 2012 (11-1 odds)

Is the Personal Ensign (I) getting a rep for being an upset stakes? Persistently upset Rachel Alexandra in the 2010 edition (approximately 23-1 odds, pictured) while Love and Pride triumphed over Royal Delta and It’s Tricky in 2012 (11-1 odds)

Arguably the biggest upset of the decade: Smarty Jones is passed in the stretch of the 2004 Belmont Stakes (I) by Edgar Prado on Birdstone, the screaming grandstand silenced as the 40-1 shot galloped to heartbreaking victory over the fan favorite. (Photo by David Swanson)

Arguably the biggest upset of the decade: Smarty Jones is passed in the stretch of the 2004 Belmont Stakes (I) by Edgar Prado on Birdstone, the screaming grandstand silenced as the 40-1 shot galloped to heartbreaking victory over the fan favorite. (Photo by David Swanson)

Stephanie’s Kitten makes her move between Stopshoppingmaria and Sweet Cat to win the 2011 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Fillies (I) at Churchill Downs.

Stephanie’s Kitten makes her move between Stopshoppingmaria and Sweet Cat to win the 2011 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Fillies (I) at Churchill Downs.

Eighttoofasttocatch holds off Marilyn’s Guy to win the Harrison E. Johnson Memorial Stakes at Laurel Park (Photo by Jim McCue)

Eighttoofasttocatch holds off Marilyn’s Guy to win the Harrison E. Johnson Memorial Stakes at Laurel Park (Photo by Jim McCue)

Ravi’s Song holds off Stage Magic in the New Orleans Ladies’ Handicap

Ravi’s Song holds off Stage Magic in the New Orleans Ladies’ Handicap

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


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