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Thoroughbred Horse Racing Loses a Prolific Sire

Horse Racing Partnerships Will Miss Offspring By Unbridled’s Song

On July 25, 2013 the thoroughbred horse racing world lost one of its most popular and successful sires. At the age of 20, Unbridled’s Song was euthanized due to a brain tumor that was ruled inoperable. He had just completed his 16th season at Stud with Taylor Made Stallions in Nicholasville, KY where he stood this year for $60,000. The Majestic looking Gray/Roan stallion, now almost completely white, was a popular sire of precocious horses that thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, owners, and trainers alike all wanted to own.

Unbridled’s Song’s career was one to remember from the beginning. As a yearling he was purchased by owner Ernie Paragallo for $200,000 in 1994 at the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Selected yearling sale. A few months later he was brought into the Barrett’s March 2 year olds in training sale where he sold for $1.4 million dollars to Hiroshi Fujita, only to then be bought back by Paragallo because Fujita argued his vet found bone chips in the horse’s ankle. Clearly frustrated, but knowing the horse’s talent, Paragallo was happy to campaign the horse himself.

Unbridled’s Song was from the first crop of Kentucky Derby winner and champion Unbridled, out of the winning Caro mare, Trolley Song. He was off to a quick and precocious start on the race track, breaking his maiden by 8 ½ length at Saratoga then capping off the year with a G1 win in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Belmont Park. Not only was Unbridled’s Song talented on the track, he was able to duplicate that in the breeding shed. Horse racing syndicates today love to buy progeny of Unbridled’s Song because they are so good looking and show a lot of talent at under tack shows, the ultimate combination for a 2 year old in training sale. Unbridled’s Song would go on to run 2nd in a pair of G2’s, the Huctheson and the Fountain of Youth, before winning the G1 Floirda Derby. He went on to run 5th in the Kentucky Derby where he raced with a sore left front. His career ended prematurely training for the Donn Handicap where he suffered a fractured cannon bone.

In 1997 Taylor Made stood Unbridled’s Song for his first of many prolific seasons as a stallion. From 14 crops of racing age, Unbridled’s Song has sired 100 stakes winners, including 45 graded stakes winners, for combined earnings of over $89 million. He became the 27th North American stallion to eclipse 100 stakes winners earlier this year when Graydar took the Donn Handicap, and was one of ten active stallions worldwide to accomplish the feat prior to his death. Unbridled’s Song also led yearling average price at sales with a lifetime average of $298,118, leading all North American sires. In addition, he also ranks 3rd all-time among North American Sires by gross yearling sales of $198,844,653. These numbers alone can tell you how much this sire’s progeny was loved by thoroughbred horse racing partnerships across the U.S. Not only were did his progeny win early, but they were also fast, could run a route of ground and excelled on the dirt and turf as runners.

His progeny are led by U.S. champion Midshipman, Canadian champion Embur’s Song, Breeders’ Cup Distaff/Ladies’ Classic winners Unrivaled Belle, and Unbridled Elaine. He also sired multiple Grade 1 winners Octave, Splendid Blended, Thorn Song, and Zensational, as well as 2008 Kentucky Derby runner-up Eight Belles and 2009 Belmont Stakes runner-up Dunkirk. Unbridled’s Song’s legacy will continue to live on through his over 45 sons standing at stud around the world today. Led by G1 producing sires Even the Score and First Defence, he is also represented by first-crop sires Old Fashioned and Zensational, as well as young sires Dunkirk, Songandaprayer, Midshipman, and Mission Impazible.

Through all his success on and off the track progeny of Unbridled’s Song have been plagued with the same relative unsoundness that Unbridled’s Song had himself as a race horse that cut his career short. Being such a big, fast and precocious animals, progeny of Unbridled’s Song seem to fit the saying “high risk, high reward”. At Blinkers On Racing Stable, we purchased a son of Unbridled’s Song for our thoroughbred horse racing partnerships as a 2 year old in training at the OBS June 2012 sale. Now, named Island Freedom, he stopped the clock in 10 flat, the co-fastest time at the sale, doing it better than any other horse in the sale. Bloodstock advisor Greg Gilchrist felt that from the beginning this horse had unlimited talent and potential. Also, being a ¾ brother to first crop sire and G2 winner Old Fashioned (by Unbridled’s Song), we knew that we had to have this horse. Just like his father, Island Freedom has it all, looks, pedigree, speed, and presence, but unfortunately that’s not all. He has also been dealt an unlucky hand like many Unbridled’s Songs, being so big he has had a tough time getting to the track. But with patience and time everyone in the thoroughbred horse partnership is confident that he will be well worth the wait.

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on September 2, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Summer Racing Attracts the Best From Coast to Coast

Horse Racing Partnerships Gear Up for the Best Meets of the Year

In thoroughbred horse racing the month of July marks the beginning of the Summer meets at two of the most unique, and visited venues in the country. On the West coast, The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club is situated just 20 miles north of San Diego. On the East Coast, Saratoga Race Course is just about a 3 hour drive north of Manhattan. Both tracks have a storied history and some of the best racing condensed into about 7 weeks with non-stop action for thoroughbred horse racing partnerships and owners alike.

Dating back to 1863, Saratoga Race Course held their inaugural thoroughbred race at what is now the Okalahoma training track just across the street from where the main track is today. The Saratoga meet was originally only 4 days, and as the years went on it continued to be lengthened because of its popularity to what it is today, 40 racing dates. The track was originally developed and supported by John Hunter, who went on to become chairman of the Jockey Club, William R. Travers, former boxer, future congressman John Morrissey, and Cornelius Vanderbilt. Saratoga Race Course has continued to be in use since its opening to  thoroughbred horse racing in 1863, except from 1911-1912 when anti-gambling legislation was passed in the state, and then also from 1943-1945 during WWII. Otherwise, Saratoga has been a home to some of the best thoroughbreds to ever run in the United States.

The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club first opened in 1937 with the likes of Bing Crosby, one of the track’s biggest supporters and co-founders, who was at the gates on opening day taking tickets. Del Mar has been a Southern California staple each year for thoroughbred horse racing syndicates and fans, bringing together perfect weather and location, as well as some of the year’s best races. Located right on the coast, the track has some spectacular views that no other track in the country has. With its proximity to the beach, fans and owners make a vacation out of their trip to the races staying weeks at a time “Where the surf meets the turf” at Del Mar.

Between Del Mar and Saratoga, 33 racing dates at Del Mar and 40 at Saratoga there are a combined 98 Stakes races between the 73 racing dates, and 24 of them are Grade 1 races! All combined into a short period of time from the middle of July through Labor Day in early September these tracks host some of the best racing in the world. Thoroughbred horse racing partnerships travel form across the country to send their horses to these meets and to race in the top Stakes races that can make a horse’s career, and also fulfill the hopes and dreams of the horse racing syndicates. At Blinkers On Racing Stable, our thoroughbred horse racing partnership was fortunate enough to win the 2011 G1 Test Stakes at Saratoga with Turbulent Descent. Winning a race of this magnitude at Saratoga, that holds soo much thoroughbred horse racing history, was an experience that no one in the horse racing partnership will ever forget.

This year, we will not be sending any horses to Saratoga, but we will be sending about 9 horses down to Del Mar for the meet. Between 4 two year olds and 5 older horses the Blinkers On horse racing partnerships should have a very busy and fun meet. We will have partners flying in from all over the country to see their horses run and enjoy the spectacular racing and weather that comes together at The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club. Good luck to all the Blinkers On horse racing partnerships this year at Del Mar!

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
 

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Sticking to Your Guns

2 Year Old Focused Thoroughbred Partnerships See Prices Rise

What use to be a secondary market to buy thoroughbreds, 2 year olds in training sales, have proven their value over the years with more owners drifting into the 2 year old market, while still having a hand in the popular yearling market. With foal crops down and more pressure and emphasis to win early with less risk, horse racing syndicates have found that purchasing 2 year olds in training gives their owners’ the ability to achieve just that with the least amount of risk. As a result, the prices at 2 year old in training sales have been significantly increasing year over year for the past 3 years. This year has seen all-time highs in average price and median price across the board at 2 year old in training sales, making it very difficult for the once entrepreneurial horse racing partnerships to buy.

As a thoroughbred syndicate it is very important to have goals and a plan for the partnership, specifically how to acquire horses. In the past, most thoroughbred partnerships were focused on buying pedigree, which would typically be found at select yearling sales. Those horse racing partnerships believed that the extra cost involved in paying for the pedigree and extra time it would take the horse to get to the track was worth the risk. But today the mindset has changed significantly. Thoroughbred syndicates started realizing that paying a premium for a yearling with pedigree, could be a greater risk than paying for a 2 year old in training with average or little pedigree because the extra time they had to wait to get that yearling to the track let alone even get to the track, as well as never being able to see that horse run before they purchased it.

As a result, Blinkers On Racing Stable has seen a significant shift in the market to buying 2 year olds in training this year, which has been our model for the past 8 years. We now see average prices rising on horses because the demand has gone up and the foal crops have dropped. But knowing our success purchasing two year olds in training with horses like multiple G1 winner Turbulent Descent, and Stakes winner Hidinginplainsight, we knew that if we stuck to our plan that we would be able to find the right horses that we loved without compromising. Last year in 2012, we attended the June OBS 2 year old in training sale for the first time, but it paid off when we bought a horse with unlimited potential, Island Freedom, a son of Unbridled’s Song, and ¾ brother to Old Fashioned. He ran an 1/8th in the co-fastest time of 10 flat. We have high hopes for this colt, and know that patience will pay off when he makes his first start at Del Mar this Summer.

In addition, Blinkers On attended the 2013 OBS April 2 year olds in training sale where we have had the most success and also catalogs the  most horses (1,200), and we did not purchase one horse. We spent thousands on vet bills and travel, as well as countless hours analyzing stride and looking at horses. Because we were disciplined and did not want to over pay for a horse that we didn’t completely love we came home with nothing. Obviously, this was not a great feeling but we stuck to our plan and went to the next sale at the Barrett’s May 2 year olds in training sale.  We purchased the horse at the top of our list, a 2 year old son by Benny the Bull, Bullwhip, who breezed an 1/8th in 10 flat, the co-fastest time at the sale. To be able to buy this horse, especially at the price we got him at was perfect. There’s nothing like going to a sale and getting the horse at the top for your list for the price you want him at.

Had our thoroughbred syndicate panicked and over paid for a couple horses in April instead of waiting for May Barrett’s and then May Fasig-Tipton where we purchased 2 more, we may not have purchased the 3 horses that we feel very strongly about. The thoroughbred market is full of ups and down, high and lows, but if you are willing to be patient and stick to your plan, you will be rewarded. That is not to say that looking out into the future with where racing is going and adjusting a little is not a good thing. Like any good business it is important to see change coming, and that is why we decided to buy 2 Cal-Bred yearlings last year, but not switch our model to only buying Cal-Breds. We plan to attend the June OBS 2 year olds in training sale and hopefully purchase 2 or 3 more horses. With a full stable we look to have a fantastic Summer and Fall!

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Test of a Champion

Horse Racing’s Oldest Leg of The Triple Crown

The Belmont Stakes is known as the final leg of the Triple Crown, and also the most grueling. It is run at a distance of 1 ½ miles five weeks after the Kentucky Derby. The Belmont Stakes is held annually at Belmont Park in Elmont, NY on Long Island. It is known as one of the biggest, if not the biggest race at Belmont Park each year. This race has broken many Triple Crown dreams over the years, with its unusually long distance wearing down most horses, especially those that have competed in the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes. In a span of 5 weeks a Triple Crown candidate must start with the Kentucky Derby at 1 ¼ miles, then 2 weeks later, the Preakness at 1 1/8th miles, and then 3 weeks later win the toughest and longest of them all, The Belmont at 1 ½ miles, duly nicknamed the “Test of the Champion”.

The first Belmont stakes was held at Jerome Park Racetrack in the Bronx, NY in 1867. The track was financed by August Belmont Sr., for whom the race was named after. The race remained at Jerome Park until 1890 when it had a brief stint at Morris Park, and then in 1905 the race was moved to Belmont Park Racetrack, where it currently resides. Before 1921 the race was run clockwise, in the English tradition and it was not until 1926 that the race was run at the current distance of 1 ½ miles. This distance is one that very unique for American racing and one that proves challenging each year for these young three year olds that have never run this far in a race before.

In more recent history, the Belmont has become more of a specialty race that horses will point to that are bred to run a route of ground. Rather than in the past when more horses from the previous 2 legs of the Triple Crown would continue to compete in each of three legs. Trainers and horse racing partnerships have targeted this race several months in advance and often times are waiting fresh off a lay off where as a Triple Crown candidate is coming off 2 of his most challenging races ever, into his 3rd race in 5 weeks at the longest distance. This is another reason why so many horses fail to complete the third leg of the Triple Crown.

The Belmont Stakes, traditionally won by 3 year old male horses has seen 3 fillies take home the carnations in its history. In 1867 the inaugural race was won by Ruthless, in 1905 Tanya, and most recently in 2007 the race was won by Rags to Riches. In addition, Julie Krone was the first woman to win a Triple Crown race with her win in the Belmont stakes aboard Colonial Affair.  Not only was history made for females in this race, but also colts because in 1973 Secretariat won the Triple Crown and completed it with the still standing track record of 2:24.00 winning by the largest margin, 31 lengths. Truly this is a record that will stand the test of time as the closest finishing time is 2 full seconds slower.

Owners, trainers, and horse racing syndicates alike all dream of winning the winning Triple Crown, culminating with a win in the Belmont. Unfortunately, it seems like an insurmountable feat that really does end with the “Test of a Champion”. But each year thoroughbred partnerships gain a new sense of hope when they attend sales across the country looking for the top prospects and that one special horse that could be the one to fulfill the common goal of winning the Triple Crown.

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on June 2, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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A Farewell to Hollywood Park

Horse Racing Partnerships Reflect on Racing at Hollywood Park

For the last several years the owners of Hollywood Park, now named Betfair Hollywood Park, have been threatening to develop the land that the track resides on.  This creates a troublesome problem for thoroughbred horse racing syndicates and thoroughbred horse racing in southern California as a whole. The majority of the current horse population resides at either Santa Anita racetrack or Betfair Hollywood Park for most of the year, and closing Hollywood would displace necessary barns that house half of the thoroughbred population in Southern California.

Hollywood Park was inaugurated in 1938 by the Hollywood Turf Club and has been a Southern California staple for thoroughbred horse racing since its inception. Its history is rich, hosting the inaugural Breeders’ Cup in 1984 as well hosting the event in 1987 and 1997. The track was also the venue for the first million dollar earning horse, Citation, who broke the mark in the Hollywood Gold Cup in 1951. Hollywood Park was also home to one of America’s most famed and loved mares of all time, Zenyatta.

With all its history and the state of racing today in conjunction with our current economic status, the owners feel that developing the land is more important than the future of racing. In 2005 Churchill Downs Inc. sold Hollywood Park for about $120 million more than they purchased it for 6 years earlier, to current owner, Bay Meadows Land Company. As part of the deal, Bay Meadows Land Company had to continue racing for at least three years after they purchased Hollywood. Since those three years have passed it seems like each year they threaten to close the track, but each year racing continues. Unfortunately, this year seems a little more serious, and real action has been taken by the CHRB ,TOC, and CTT to fill the likely void.

The biggest issue at hand is, where do all the horses that reside and train at Hollywood Park move to? In recent months CA trainers, owners, and the CHRB have been working with both Fairplex, that carries a couple weeks of racing in September, and Los Alamitos which carries mainly quarter horse racing, to help with this issue. Originally it was thought that the best solution would be to have one of these tracks expand the length of their race track so that dates could be added that would be lost from Hollywood.  After months of speculation and rumors, it seemed like Fairplex was the best option but they have recently said that they would be unable to raise the necessary money to fund the track renovations, according to an article in the Bloodhorse. The article does state that Fairplex is happy to offer its stalls and facilities in any way that it can to aid in the housing and training of horses. This solves the biggest issue at hand for now, but Southern CA is still left with the end of April through the 2nd week of July and from the second week of November up until Christmas with no venue for racing. The latest tentative plan would be to extend Santa Anita’s Winter/Spring meet through July 4. Then, the Del Mar Summer meet would run from the second week of July and extend an extra week in September. Fairplex would run its normal meet, and following that, Santa Anita would pick up and run through earlier November where at that point Del Mar would pick up fall dates for the balance of the month, leaving a few weeks in December up in the air.

In recent years horse racing has been a haven for constant change and ebbs and flows in the economy. The news that this may be in fact the final year at Hollywood Park is not a surprise but still saddening to many racing fans and thoroughbred partnerships alike. For us at Blinkers On Racing Stable, we see Hollywood Park as a home, where we like to condition many of our young horses as they make their way to the races. A great example was Turbulent Descent, who resided at Hollywood Park even during the Santa Anita meet, Hollywood was her home. She broke her maiden there, and went on to win the Moccasin Stakes, and the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet all as a two year old. It wasn’t until her final race for the Blinkers On Partners that she raced at Hollywood Park again, after winning the G1 Santa Anita Oaks, G2 Beaumont and G1 Test Stakes, she returned to Hollywood to win the Desert Stormer Handicap.  This made her a perfect 4 for 4 at Hollywood Park and an end to an amazing career with Blinkers On Racing Stable.

Horse racing partnerships around Southern California I am sure share similar memories with the track, but know that racing will continue whether Hollywood stays or not. As long as the game continues to bring in and retain people passionate about horse racing it will continue to grow and flourish. And in the end no one can say for certain at this point that this really is the final year at Hollywood Park.

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on May 4, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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The New Kentucky Derby Points System

Horse Racing Syndicates Discuss the New Kentucky Derby Points System

The Kentucky Derby, run on the first Saturday in May each year for the best 3 year olds in the country, is one of if not the most prestigious race in the world. Horse racing syndicate’s dreams live and die with the Kentucky Derby each year. It’s $2 million purse attracts runners from around the country and around the world. In addition, it brings together racing fans from around the world who dress up in classic Derby attire and enjoy the spectacle that is Churchill Downs on Derby day. This year will mark the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby and also a significant change, which is how to qualify.

In years past to be eligible for the Kentucky the top 20 money earners that entered would be accepted. Preference was given to those who also had the highest stakes and graded stakes earnings, with no also eligibles. After 138 years of using this system the Kentucky Derby committee decided to revamp the old system based on a horse’s earnings and created a new system that they felt was a more comprehensive and effective way to get the best qualified horses to the Kentucky Derby. There was some uproar and backlash from the horse racing industry, and industry that is slow to accept change, but overall it seems like the new system has a good model set in place with good intentions, but may need some tweaking down the road.

For the 2013 Kentucky Derby horses will earn points for coming in 1st, 2nd, 3rd, or 4th in pre-designated races. In total there are 36 races that carry a pre-designated amount of points for running 1st through 4th. They begin with what is known as the Kentucky Derby Prep Season which has 19 races, which begin in the 2 year old year, late September and continue into the beginning of the 3 year old year in early February. These races carry points of 10 (1st), 4 (2nd), 2 (3rd), and 1 (4th). These races traditionally serve as foundation-building races that lead into the Kentucky Derby Championship Series, the next group of qualifying races.

The Kentucky Derby Championship Series is a three-part series of 17 races on dirt or synthetic surfaces over distances of at least one mile that are traditionally run over a 10-week run up to the first Saturday in May. The first leg, which mostly includes races that feed into the major Kentucky Derby launching pads, includes eight events: the Risen Star (Fair Grounds), Fountain of Youth (Gulfstream Park), Gotham (Aqueduct), Tampa Bay Derby (Tampa Bay Downs), San Felipe (Santa Anita), Rebel (Oaklawn Park), Spiral (Turfway Park) and Sunland Derby (Sunland Park), with a 50 (1st), 20 (2nd) 10 (3rd) 5 (4th) point scale. The second leg features seven stakes races: the Florida Derby (Gulfstream Park), U.A.E. Derby (Meydan Racecourse), Louisiana Derby (Fair Grounds), Wood Memorial (Aqueduct), Santa Anita Derby (Santa Anita), Arkansas Derby (Oaklawn Park) and Blue Grass (Keeneland) that are worth 100 (1st), 40 (2nd), 20 (3rd), and 10 (4th). The final leg is two Wild Card events, the Lexington (Keeneland) and Derby Trial (Churchill Downs), which offer some hope for horses to increase their point totals with a 20 (1st), 8 (2nd) 4(3rd), and 2 (4th) scale.

In addition to the point system, there will be 4 also eligibles for the Kentucky Derby listed in order of points earned which will give them the opportunity to run if any of the top 20 point earners scratch. This seems more true to everyday racing, where also eligibles are listed if the race overfills and gives another horse a chance to get in if one scratches. Furthermore, some people may wonder how does a filly earn points for the Kentucky Derby because there have been 3 fillies who have won the Kentucky Derby. And the rule is that they must run in the same prep races against the boys in order to get enough points for the Kentucky Derby.

The Kentucky Derby committee hopes to create new fans for horse racing by using this system. They are implementing a more fan-friendly, cohesive and simplified system that should create compelling drama and appeal to a wider customer base. Fans, as well as horse racing syndicates, racing partnerships, and trainers of the horses, will know exactly which races are included and what races matter the most based on a sliding scale of points. The committee also commissioned a poll to see how many people understood how to qualify for the Kentucky Derby prior to the new changes, and 83% did not know how a horse qualified. They hope that by simplifying the process with a clear distinguishable point system people will be more likely to be involved in the road to the Derby and end up engaging in the race itself with some knowledge of the horses and the sport.

It is evident that the Kentucky Derby committee is doing the right thing in trying to expand racing’s fan base and the quality of horses in the field. And it also seems like most horse racing partnerships would agree that this new system is a good one that may need races added or values of points for specific races adjusted but all in all it is a great way to get the average fan more excited and involved in thoroughbred horse racing.

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on March 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Rules and Regulations of Horse Racing

Horse Racing Syndicates Understand the Regulations

Thoroughbred horse racing is a unique sport in which there is no central governing body of the sport. Instead, each state has its own horse racing board or governing body that regulates that state’s rules and regulations. In some ways this is can be a good thing because rules can be tailored to specific needs or wants of the racing population in each state, that all states as a whole may not agree upon. But on the contrary, it can pose some very difficult problems for racing from state to state as far as regulations in certain types of races as well as medication rules and testing just to name a few.

In California, thoroughbred horse racing is governed by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB). The CHRB was formed in 1933 in order to ensure the integrity, viability, and safety of the California horse racing industry. Their interests involve; safety of the horses, promoting racing and breeding, and regulation among pari-mutuel wagering in the state among other things. These broad areas are even more regulated between licensed race tracks across the state of California by internal management and officials at each track.

Each licensed race track in California abides by the same rules that the CHRB sets forth and works to ensure that the integrity and safety of the game is upheld each day. Specifically, each track has a group of Stewards, usually three, that act as the officials of the track. Their duties involve watching each race closely in order to make sure that any infractions or violations that may affect the outcome of the race are handled properly. A big reason the officials job is so important is because they must uphold the pari-mutuel integrity of the game so that the pay outs of the race will properly represent the winner that has not violated any of the rules set forth by the CHRB.

For example, when horses impede one another or a horse cuts another horse off causes a horse to lose significant ground in the race or in the worst case fall down, it is the job of the stewards to review the situation right on the spot to make a decision who was in the wrong. It will happen where one horse wins a race, but the stewards call an “inquiry” to the race where they feel they must review an incident to make sure the correct horse has won the race without foul. This is very important not just for the safety of the horses but also for the integrity of the game because there are thousands and sometimes millions wagered in horse racing events.

Unfortunately, like any sport today there will always be people trying to gain an unfair advantage. Hopefully, the CHRB system set in place has the ability to be flexible and change with the times so that those who try to challenge the integrity of our game will be stopped and this game can be played on a level playing field. It is essential for thoroughbred partnerships and owners alike to stay involved and up to date with racing regulations and take a stand for better drug testing and putting people with integrity in positions of power and importance in this game. Without believing in the rules and regulations set forth by the CHRB and those governing bodies in states across the U.S., racing will become vulnerable to those trying to gain an unfair advantage.

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Eclipse Awards

Every Thoroughbred Syndicate’s Dream

The Eclipse awards are American Thoroughbred horse racing awards that are given to the top horses in their respective categories at the end of each year. The Eclipse awards began in 1971 and were created by three different governing bodies in horse racing: The National Thoroughbred Racing Association, The Daily Racing Form, and the National Turf Writers Association. These three bodies select finalists each year and then vote on the top three finalists in each category to determine the winner. The winners are then announced in January of the next year at a formal ceremony that would be an honor to attend for anyone involved in a horse racing partnership.

These awards are named after the very talented racehorse and influential sire, Eclipse. Eclipse was foaled on April 1, 1764 in Great Britain. He was probably the best thoroughbred of his time, winning all 18 of his races of his races in a span of 17 months. Eclipse was so brilliant on the track that he was retired to stud because there was lack of competition, no one would bet against him. Eclipse went on to a prolific stud career where he sired 344 winners. His bloodlines were so influential that in 1970 The Royal Veterinary College determined that his bloodlines were in nearly 80% of all thoroughbreds. Eclipse was truly a special horse that deserves the recognition he has received as racings highest awards are named for him.

The most prestigious Eclipse award that is given each year and that every thoroughbred horse racing partnership dreams of is The Horse of the Year. The Horse of the Year award is a designation give to a horse, irrespective of age, whose performance during the racing year was deemed the most outstanding. Over the years there have several horses to win the Eclipse award twice but only one horse since the inception of the Eclipse awards has won this honor 3 times, Forego. Forego won this award in 1974, 1975, and 1976. He had 34 wins in 57 starts including 9 seconds and 7 thirds. In total he won 8 eclipse awards including horse of the year honors 3 times, male Horse of the Year 4 times, and Champion Sprinter once. He was truly an outstanding gelding that won races from 7 furlongs to 2 miles. His record of 3 consecutive Horse of Year Eclipse awards may never be surpassed.

In total there are twenty Eclipse awards bestowed each year for each respective category based on age, distance, and surface. They are: Horse of the Year, Champion Two Year Old, Champion Two Year Old Filly, Champion Three Year Old, Champion Three Year Old Filly, Champion Older Male, Champion Older Female, Champion Sprinter, Champion Female Sprinter, Champion Male Turf Horse, Champion Female Turf Horse, Outstanding Steeplechase Horse, Outstanding Owner, Outstanding Breeder, Outstanding Trainer, Outstanding Jockey, Outstanding Apprentice Jockey, Eclipse Special Award, Eclipse Award of Merit, and Moment of the Year. Each of these awards are held in very high regard in the thoroughbred horse racing community, and any horse that wins this award will be well deserving of the honor.

Blinkers On Racing Stable was lucky enough to have the 2010 runner up in the Eclipse voting for Champion Two Year Old Filly, with Turbulent Descent. To even be mentioned in the conversation is more than an honor and something that our thoroughbred partnership will never forget and always remember when they think of their best memories with their horse racing syndicate. It is Blinkers On and I’m sure every horse racing partnership’s goal is to win an Eclipse award. With hard work and dedication to our sport and our partners we hope that one day we are fortunate enough to call our thoroughbred horse racing partnership, Eclipse recipients.

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on January 19, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Daily Racing Form

Thoroughbred Partnerships Benefit From The DRF

Have you ever been to the races and not known the first thing about how to pick a winning horse in a race? Many people find themselves betting on horses for a number of reasons that really have no bearing on whether the horse will win the race or not, but don’t have any idea what else to go by. I find people at the track talking about the color of the horse as well as the jockey’s silks and the horse’s birthday. There is nothing wrong with going out to the track and relying on a little bit of luck with one of these methods, but at the same time wouldn’t you like to know how to read the Daily Racing Form?

Have you ever been to the racetrack and seen people everywhere pouring over a newspaper, circling horses on each page and studying so intensely? Well that paper is the Daily Racing Form (DRF), the Bible for most thoroughbred horse racing partnerships and anyone involved in racing. The DRF was founded in 1894 in Chicago, Illinois with the purpose of detailing individual races at a racetrack with the past performances of each horse in each race. This was a way for bettors and thoroughbred syndicate owners to get a better idea of how good each horse was, what types of races they had been running in, and also how they finished in each race.

Today the DRF also acts as a source of thoroughbred racing and breeding news on a daily basis, but primarily is the gold standard for past performances for racing. When you pick up a DRF for the first time at the racetrack it can be quite daunting because there is a lot of information on each page. But there are a few keys things to focus on as you are first learning to read the DRF. First read the condition of the race. The condition of the race will tell you the distance of the race, the surface the horses will be running on, the level of the race, as well as the age and sex of the horses running. From there go through each horse running and see if they have been running at a similar level as the condition listed and see how they have finished at this level previously. This will give you a good idea of what is called the class of each horse. In addition, while looking to see if this horse can compete at this level briefly take a look at the horses overall record as well as their last few races which will give you an idea of the horse’s current form, or how they have been running lately. This will sometimes give you an idea of a certain pattern or trend the horse has been going through.

After looking at the class and form of each horse in a specific race take a look at the pace scenario that may set up during the race. In each past performance of a horse’s previous race the DRF gives you the position the horse was in at five different points throughout the race from start to finish. This will give you a good idea of the horse’s running style. You will see as you look through each horse’s past performances most of them will develop a style that reoccurs from race to race. Some horses will go straight to the lead and stay at the lead and either win that way or completely fade at the end, they are speed horses. Then there are horses that sit just off the speed in about 2nd to 4th and wait until the last couple furlongs for their last kick and win from there. And then there are closers and deep closers who break very slow from the gate and sit towards the back of the pack throughout the entire race and come closing at the very end.

Once you have found the speed of the race, the horses that sit just off the pace, and closers you might wonder well how does that help me? For example, if there is one horse in the race with a ton of speed and now one else in the lead is really ever close to the front, that may give the speed horse a good opportunity to go to the lead without getting much pressure from any other horses and give that a horse a good chance to win. On the contrary, if there are several horses with a lot of speed and a couple horses that like to sit off the pace or closers, the speed horses have a good chance of tiring each other out up front and leaving an opening for the horses just off the pace and the closers to come running at the end.

Hopefully this gives new thoroughbred horse racing owners a better idea of how to handicap a race rather than just picking a horse randomly. Experiment with the form and don’t be afraid to ask someone for help. And for more information about to read the DRF and to see what it looks like follow this link for a full explanation and tutorial at: http://www1.drf.com/flash/drf_pp_tutorial.html .

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on December 31, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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California Bred Program

Thoroughbred Partnerships Take Advantage Of Cal Bred Program

Thoroughbred horse racing in California has recently received a boost in incentives for both breeding and racing California Breds in California. Horse Racing Syndicates throughout the state would be hard pressed to find better value elsewhere than racing Cal Breds in California. With the industry reporting a declining foal crop each year and purse money mostly remaining stagnant on the west coast without the help of casinos, the new Cal bred incentives look enticing to California race horse partnerships.

First, a thoroughbred must qualify as a California bred to be eligible for these new incentives. A California bred thoroughbred is defined by the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association as: A horse dropped in California after being conceived in California, or any Thoroughbred foal dropped by a mare in California if the mare remains in California to be next bred to a Thoroughbred stallion standing in the state. If the mare cannot be bred for two successive seasons, but remains in California during that period, her foal will be considered a California-bred. If these qualifications are met by a thoroughbred then a minimal fee must be made to the CTBA to register the horse officially as a California bred thoroughbred. To get a better idea of how many Cal Breds there are each year the Jockey Club reports that: In 2012 there was a foal crop in California of about 1,600 horses where in the U.S. the total foal crop was 22,500. That means that California Breds only account for about 7% of the total foal crop in the U.S., which in turn means race horse partnerships have a smaller group of horses to compete against in restricted California bred races.

In owning a California bred horse thoroughbred partnerships are able to run Cal Breds in restricted races against other Cal Breds, not having to run in open races if a horse racing partnership does not want to. Although, if a race horse syndicate wants to run in an open maiden special weight or open allowance race in California, that horse’s owners will receive a bonus award in addition to the regular purse. For example, owners can receive at least a 20 percent bonus on the finisher’s share for finishing first through fifth in an open allowance or overnight stake race and up to a 20 percent bonus for finishing first in an open starter allowance above $15,000 and open non-maiden claiming races with a claiming price of $40,000 or greater in Southern California and $20,000 or greater in Northern California. These levels are purposely set high to encourage the ownership of high-quality runners and to restrict the number of qualifiers so that the awards will function as a major incentive. In addition, Cal Bred winners of open maiden special weight races will receive a bonus of $17,500 in Southern California.

This year The Thoroughbred Owners of California, The California Marketing Committee, and through nominations of 2 year olds the 2012 will jointly fund the Golden State Series which has been initiated to bring new stakes and purse enhancements to existing stakes totaling $2.325 million. To be eligible a foal of 2010 must have made a $300 nomination fee by February 15 or be subject to a one time late entry fee to the program. The program is made to encourage and reward participation, and purse money will be distributed through sixth place in races with purses between $100,000-$150,000 and through eighth place in races with purses of $200,000-$300,000. Initially, the incentive programs are designed to significantly boost purses and the number of races available for 2 and 3 year-olds to continue the quick return to owners and breeders. Over time, and with success, the goal is to expand the purses and opportunities for older horses as well. Purses for the new stakes series range from $100,000 to $300,000 with races at all major California tracks, including the addition of two turf races in Northern California.

With all these incentives and additional races in the state of California we at Blinkers On decided to purchase a California bred yearling at the 2012 Barrett’s yearling sale.  Knowing that these incentives and races are in fact geared towards younger horses we feel that if we were not taking advantage of these programs while racing in California, we would be missing out if we did not own a California bred. In any industry, especially thoroughbred horse racing, it is important to be on top of the most recent programs so that you can take full advantage of the incentives that are right in your own backyard.  Hopefully, with more horse racing partnerships and other owners understanding the benefits of owning and racing Cal Breds the incentive programs will continue to grow each year and eventually be able to make a significant impact on the sport itself.

Blinkers On

Blinkers On Racing Stable, a leader in thoroughbred horse racing partnerships, brings together the finest in thoroughbred horse racing expertise with the best in business know-how, and above all, a team of people you can trust, to manage your investment. We are committed to helping you experience the joys of thoroughbred horse ownership. For more information on thoroughbred partnerships visit our website or request an information package about our partnership. Keep up with horse racing in California by reading our Blog, finding us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking us out on LinkedIn, or visiting our YouTube Channel!

 
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Posted by on December 1, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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