Another Breeders' Cup has been safely stashed in the history books. I think this years Classic and the Distaff have to be ranked in the top ten of the races contested over the two day period for the entire history of the Breeders' Cup. However lots of great racing and championship performances were seen this past November 1 and 2nd and after a few days of non-racing the fans and media alike will begin talk about the 2014 Kentucky Derby and Triple Crown races. But before we head off to pick some roses, lets get back to the Breeders' Cup for just a bit.
With plenty of talk about who won and how they were able to accomplish those wins, I'd like to go on the record with just a few observations of my own.
1: I really think the Breeders' Cup venue should rotate across the United States, Canada and perhaps even onto foreign surfaces. For someone who lives in Santa Anita's back yard so to speak I love seeing the Breeders' Cup so close to home. But what about the "common" fan that can't afford to travel to California each year? Besides, wouldn't it make more sense to bring the Cup to the people so that maybe, just maybe it would introduce this great sport to a new audience of fans to start a new fan base? Sure it would. Of course the weather here in California has a lot to say about that but I think in all fairness the Breeders' Cup should be rotated so that a wide array of people could witness the races live and in person.
2: The track "bias" on Friday's card was a bit short of embarrassing. The track more resembled the 210 FWY than a race track and several of the winners had the win aided by that speed bias and favoring track. Sure they tried to slow things down for Saturday's racing and were able to do so to a degree it still favored speed all weekend.
3: The amount of ignorance and lack of knowledge by movie stars and those with fame and fortune was well on display. Even our own Bo Derek, CHRB board member was on display as she glad handed other movie stars and politicians that couldn't tell one end of the horse from the other. Sure, show these folks on camera but keep the mikes muted. Can we do that for TVG as well? Also, the recorded video message from the Governor of California needs to go away. If the day is so important to him as he said it was, why wasn't he in attendance?
4: All in all it was a great show! Santa Anita and the Breeders' Cup folks did an awesome job and the weather sure did make this a great weekend of racing. The "guitar" call to post was a nice change of pace and the singing of the "Best is yet to Come" also brought some class to the event. Here's to making 2014 an even better two days of racing!
Now to the races themselves ...
The race of the day on Friday was no doubt the G1 Breeders' Cup Distaff which featured six fillies and mares high lighted by the presence of Royal Delta, Beholder and Princess of Sylmar.While the race belonded to Beholder for trainer Richard Mandella and jockey Gary Stevens, it was bittersweet for us to see Royal Delta go out the way she did while simply just not running her best race. Princess of Sylmar lost her best chance at the break and simply didn't handle the track after that. Take nothing away from Beholder as the daughter of Henny Hughes fired another bullet at $7.60 for her connections. HOY considerations? You betcha.
Some media types found it neccessary to say that they didn't think Groupie Doll was the same horse she was last year. Huh? We didn't see any evidence of that as the 5-year-old mare won the G1 $1,000,000 Filly and Mare Turf for trainer William Bradley and her connections at $8.
How about the performance of Mucho Macho Man? Wow is all we can say at the son of Macho Uno took down the $5,000,000 Breeders' Cup Classic at $10 for trainer Kathleen Ritvo and Gary Stevens. The five-year-old was stretched late by his rivals but proved gutty again with the nose win here.
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