Cheatin' bastid!


So today was the Kentucky Derby. Yeah, yeah, most of y’all don’t care all that much (thus the placement of this in MPSIMS, not the Pit), but I do. A little and all. Being the horse racing freak I am.


War Emblem won. Good for the horse, good for the jockey. Trainer? Grrr. Bob Baffert is a very successful trainer in this sport. He won the Derby in '97 and '98, and has wooed a wealthy Arab prince into financing multimililon dollar yearling purchases, so Bob always has seriously high quality racing stock. Being friends with a trainer of Grade I winning horses (who regularly compete against Baffert), I hear all kinds of icky stories about the guy.

This year so many horses were entered, they had to cut out about 5-6 entrants (Derby is limited to 20; earnings determine who runs). Earlier in the week, Baffert shocked everyone by entering the clearly outclassed Danthebluegrassman in the race. NO ONE thought he was running, particularly the trainer of Windward Passage–who ended up getting snubbed out of the race as a result. Oh, and gee, apparently there’s some bad blood between Baffert and the owner of the excluded horse. And by golly, yesterday morning, overmatched Danny boy “tied up” (basically, severe muscle cramps) and had to be…gasp…SCRATCHED. Suuuuuuuuuuuuurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrree. And of course, it was too late to get Windward Passage in. That whole thing just reeks.

Then…the winner. Despite all the money, Baffert had no Derby quality horses. Baffert saw this horse War Emblem win the Illinois Derby last month, and said hey, I can BUY my Derby horse! I’ll go convince the prince! Seven figures are exchanged, and voila. This race is the first War Emblem has run as a trainee of Baffert and possession of a Saudi Arabian prince.

ANYbody else could’ve won and I’d be fine. Really.


[sub]this mundane pointless rant brought to you by the insignificant and ignored sports fans of America[/sub]

Yeah, I consider this more of Springer’s race than that scoundrel Baffert. Baffert didn’t get War Emblem to a 112 Beyer for the Illinois. Springer did.

Nice race, pulling away in the stretch. Maybe I’ll wander down to Pimlico in a couple of weeks.

But did you see the size of the payout? $42.00, I wish I had money on that horse. :frowning:

Mr. Zero, this was the year to bet the Derby. It was so wide open, the “favorite” was 6-1…the longest odds for a favorite in Derby history. There were 10 horses that had a legitimate shot of winning, all of them with odds in the 10-1 to 20-1 range (War Emblem was 20-1), and that makes for all kind of play options.

Not to analyze too much, but IMHO War Emblem was a huge overlay. He won by daylight in his last race, posting the best speed figure of any horse in the race, and had won impressively in 3 other starts. Meanwhile, Johannesburg–at 8-1, one of the “favorites,” had raced only once since October (and lost), had never raced around 2 turns, had raced beyond a mile just once (in October), and arrived at Churchill the day of the race, never having a single workout on what can be a fickle track. I would’ve picked War Emblem (and half the field) over him any day.

$43 to win was impressive, but did you see the exacta?! $1300!!! For a $1 bet! And the trifecta was even more outrageous…something like $16,000. The 2nd and 3rd place horses were "long"shots, but they didn’t surprise all that much ending up where they were on that speed-favoring track (again, they were horses in the 10-1 to 25-1 range). Man, this was the year to bet the Derby!

brachyrhynchos, you know, I didn’t realize War Emblem’s Beyer was 112. In the past performances listed in The Blood Horse it was listed as 100, but still the highest in the field. All of the other top horses scored in the 90s…innnteressssting.

And Baffert still sucks. Of course, what could be more American than buying your way into getting what you want. Grr. Oh, and more news into the scratch of Danthehorsethataintrunning:

Well, of course it did. :rolleyes:


I think you’re right about the Beyer rating. I know I read his recent Beyer as 112, but maybe that was post-Illinois. And they did run a fast Derby (9th fastest?).

At least I’m certain about this. I think. Maybe.