The group that bought Belle was finalized yesterday, the check was made out and a group of 9 – nearly all former Clubbers – bought Belle for $2000.
Keep in mind, this is the same amount that we sold Vanderboom Ridge for at the end of last season – and he won his last race at $4000. There were a couple of things working against us to get her sold off for more money. The primary issue we have is the one we we always have – God and everyone know we have to be horseless by 12/31. Secondarily we had a filly that could not win her last race at $5000 and she then proceeded to cut herself in her stall which did two things: kept us from racing her again to show she’s just fine and absolutely cuts back on the “eye test” factor.
We may have been able to get $2500 from a third party for her but the additional $500 for her to go someplace we don’t know didn’t seem to be the way to go for an additional $3 for everyone. Additionally our mission is to try and educate folks about ownership so they want to do take a run at ownership, either solo or in a partnership. This was a way of accomplishing that goal.
She had a nice run for the Club even though we ended on a bit of a down note (though a third place at Churchill Downs is pretty cool) she did give us a pair of wins – both at home.
Her first win was in a nice starter allowance race where she returned $28.40 to her backers. This is the highest mutual that a Club horse has ever returned. I would have to delve a little deeper but it could also be the Club’s first win in a starter allowance as well.
Her other win was a romp in a $6250 claiming race where everything seemed to go her way and she took full advantage of it.
A couple of things I would have done differently: I would have sent her to Hawthorne after Canterbury and tried to win as many as we could before we got claimed as we have done in the past with Ask Eddie and others. Keeneland and Churchill may have been too tough for her, especially since we were looking to get her claimed.
To that end I would have stepped back from plans to try her longer on the turf. That was a mistake on my end. I should have opted to go shorter and cheaper. If she got claimed then, no big deal. It was the end of the meet anyhow and while it is nice to follow a horse through the fall, it’s also nice to win at home and it’s not the end of the world if we lose a horse at the end of the meet.
However she did return over $20,000 to the Club and helped make up a little bit for the mis-step with Jerry’s Two Tickets.
As mentioned in the last post, we will be gathering bills and auditing the account and by the end of January we should have a solid final accounting. I hope that you will seriously consider rolling your return into the 2018 Club – we’d love to have each and every one of you back!
For those of you following along, look for details and sign ups for new members shortly after the first of the year.