Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Breaking The Blockage

I suppose I'm suffering from something resembling writers block because it's three days past the Preakness, we have a possible Triple Crown winner and I'm stuck for good topics to write about.

I think for me personally the Kentucky Derby is more intriguing than the Triple Crown and the Breeders' Cup trumps them both. I am more about anticipation than aftermath and the Triple Crown is a lot of aftermath. There is some anticipation but less so this year. Maybe it's because it seems inevitable that Big Brown will win the Triple Crown.

Don't get me wrong, it's not that I'm not enjoying Big Brown's unbelievable form. I am, in fact I think we're witnessing greatness in real time, but it's kind of like if your team is up three games to none in a best of seven series. It now seems only academic that they'll close the deal, you don't have the same sense of nervous excitement or apprehension over every face off and power play.

Big Brown is doing what everyone always believed was possible. When a good horse comes along in the midst of a poor crop he should dominate them. There is no real mystery or intrigue about that.

The Belmont will be billed as a match race between Big Brown and Casino Drive but realistically Big Brown is a far better horse. Casino Drive has much to prove and despite his royal bloodlines he still has to show it on the track. From what I've seen of both of them Big Brown should handle him easily.

There has been some discussion about whether or not Big Brown is "worthy" of a Triple Crown. My contention is that there is no such thing as being worthy or not. A horse is either a Triple Crown winner or they aren't. The whole notion of worthiness is based on the feeling that whoever wins the Triple Crown ought to be a champion of champions. A horse for the ages, but realistically other than in the 70's a Triple Crown winner was not necessarily one of those. Big Brown actually could be a champion of champions but he doesn't have to be in order to win the Triple Crown.

Big Brown will win the Triple Crown if he is better than all the horses he faces in the Belmont because he has already proven to be too good for the competition in the Derby and Preakness. It really is that simple.

People need to get over their pre-conceived notions and self appointed standards of all the things a Triple Crown winner should be. It is what it is.

I'm also not one of the boo-birds that expects him to be retired right after the Belmont win or lose (but especially if he wins). That is simply baseless and overly cynical. I don't understand the need to think the worst of people or be the first to predict an unfortunate happening. It may end up being correct but it won't be because of his owners lack of sportsmanship it will be because he gets injured while prepping for a fall campaign. He is definitely getting most of the summer off and his ideal fall campaign will likely be the Travers, Woodward and BC Classic. If any injury prevents him from making the Classic in top shape he will be retired.

Again it's pretty simple and logical. There is no master Machiavellian plan to screw over race fans.


Anonymous said...

I am not a "boo-bird" but the realties of the current racing industry would make it almost necessary, to the syndicate, to retire BB after the Belmont. If he wins, he has, in the owner's mind, nothing left to prove and to offer for stud an undefeated, Triple Crown Winner will be a temptation that will be to hard to resist. A dream match-up of BB and Curlin just ain't gonna happen! (Asmussen has already hinted that he will not run Curlin on synthetics) If BB loses, an injury be ‘discovered’ and he will be whisked off to stud before any more damage to his lofty reputation can happen.

peeptoad said...

If you're looking to break writer's block, then just 'cap & analyze the Memorial Day card at Hollywood Park once the fields are drawn. Should be a great card! We're going to get Perfect Drift, Daytona, your old buddy Hyperbaric, Ever A Friend, Rebellion, and Thousand Words for the Shoemaker; and Precious Kitten, Rutherienne, Diamond Diva (unbeated in two stakes this year in SoCal), and possibly Costume in the Gamely. Plus a couple of other stakes races. Can't wait!