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I did worse(!) than Rosie. Sat down just in time to see Zulu Alpha win the Pegasus Turf at 12-1 or so. $176 Exacta and nearly $900 Trifecta.
The Pegasus was just what we thought it would be.
Chalk 3-1 Mucho Gusto way outside in the gate, 2019 Eclipse Award winner as top jock Irad Ortiz, Jr. sent him and crafted the win. Why not? With these pretenders, what are they going to say? Look out for . . . Oh, just GO! They said afterward he's booked for the Dubai World Cup. Can't wait.
NBC had a goofy crew, trying to make more of this race than it was. Jerry Bailey stayed well within the confines of this race itself, as its own entity, not calling it a premier pantheon race. The main guy said, "You win this race, and you are right in the running for horse of the year . . . [One Mississippi] . . . at the end of the year." This is where TrackNotes raises voice at the TV: "C'MON!"
Eddie Olczyk reached with Diamond Oops, who finished fourth in a race past his distance, but I had him too.
Gulfstream is despicable. On the turf course, there were at least five pairs of starting gate tire ruts, which is incriminating evidence the track is mismeasured. Multiple starting points and finish lines. The turf course looked bad, and it was clear they don't use plywood or masonite under the gate wheels to eliminate the disfiguration. Horses can and often are spooked by those tracks, which are a whole lighter color; they often jump over them by instinct.
The Gulfstream grandstand and clubhouse are jokes, even on television. This is absolutely no disrespect to a local institution we love, but Gulfstream looks no bigger than a three-hole Danley Garage. Which is true, I've heard, because they robbed racing enjoyment square footage for the casino and the shopping mall.
If it's Barbie's I Married A Wiseguy Racetrack Fun Set, perfect.
Otherwise, no. And the Pegasus World Cup Invitational will have to pay for the illusion of racing romance and meaning in the future.
There's another name for that.
Tom Chambers is our man on the rail. He welcomes your comments.
A diminished Pegasus opens the new horse racing season amidst a giant orange background.Continue reading "TrackNotes: The Phantom Zone" »
Posted on Jan 22, 2021