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Pletcher, in a familiar move, will send promising three year old, Emmanuel, to Tampa Bay Friday, to engage in an allowance race. He likes to go from Gulfstream to TBD, with his sights on the TB Derby. Let's see if this guy moves forward off his debut win.
It's not really the step up in class you were hoping for.....a 30K purse with a couple of claimers, unfortunately. Don't know we'll learn much from the race on Friday, but I guess it's better than a workout.
I was hoping he would keep him at GP toward the FOY and FL Derby. Perhaps his stable dispersion is on his mind, or he is less certain about Emmanuel and wants an easier route? The Sam Davis will probably be next, then the TB Derby....what I don't like about that route is that both races are only 8.5 furlongs, the company is usually less competitive, and there is an 8 week gap before the KY Derby.
Now if Pletcher adds the Ark Derby, or the Bluegrass, then I will be more inclined to approve.
I think so much depends upon the needs of the colt, and what he can learn in competition.
On further reflection, I think he goes to the Tampa Bay Derby, then one of the big April preps. Three sophomore races is the norm for Todd.
As for this race, there are winners in here, rather than maidens. It is more of a challenge, even though it’s not much farther. But remember, he debuted at a mile. He’ll have enough foundation if all goes well to the 1st Saturday in May. Baby steps! After what I watched last year with Crowded Trade, I’m good with the patient approach!
I'm still amazed that ownership sacrifices Derby points to stay with Baffert.....guess it will stop for the next points races at Santa Anita
Given the way the points system works, the eight 100-point races are effectively "win and you're in" for the Derby so I could see a trainer switch just for that final prep. These 10 point races mean almost nothing. And if the horse can't win a 100-point prep race he probably wasn't good enough to win the Derby anyway so, no loss. Send him back to Baffert and prepare for the Breeders' Cup (unless he's also banned from Keeneland?)
No owner is switching yet so as to not "show his hand" to other owners, trainers, track management and state officials.
I was wondering if Baffert was just being defiant. If he could win all the major preps, he could render the Derby moot, and make it appear illegitimate. His hubris is on that level!
I sincerely doubt the owners will allow that.....I just wonder what keeps the owner groups with him this long?!? Do they really think he gives them an advantage? With Callaghan and Walsh.....young good trainers....as well as the obvious Pletcher and Cox, I just don't understand.....especially with such a good prospect like Corniche.
Tex, You make a lot of sense and the only thing I'll add ,The Trainers that spoke
their mind like Liz Cheney does may be left out adding to their stable . I know
Shirreffs thought it was overdone going way to far for a trainer to do his job.
He might get a horse or 2 if the owners go the route you suggest and Mandella and others
may get shut out. I think you can guess which California trainers get a shot. Maybe Jimmy Barnes.
You doubt the owners will allow that, but wonder what keeps them with him? lol
I think you can guess which California trainers get a shot. Maybe Jimmy Barnes.
I believe Churchill's rules now specify that a horse trained by a suspended trainer or anybody employed by that trainer, is ineligible. That's essentially the Jimmy Barnes rule right there.
Trainer suspensions have become a joke with Baffert horses moved to Jimmy Barnes, Asmussen horses to Scott Blasi, Doug O'Neill horses to Leandro Mora, Pletcher horses to (not sure who his main assistant is now.. Anthony Sciametta?), Richard Dutrow horses to his brother Tony, etc. So Churchill finally fixed that. If an owner of a Baffert trainee wants Derby points (and ultimately, in the race, and/or to the Belmont Stakes) the horse needs to move to a totally unaffiliated operation.