There really isn’t a whole lot going on right now. Both girls are working at Hawthorne and appear to be doing well. It looks like we’ll be entering next week: TERICE in an $8,000 claimer on the grass (25th) and MARYJEAN in a $5,000 claiming sprint on the dirt (30th). Of course neither are official until we enter and get in the race(s).
Alex is recovering from his surgery and he say he’ll be sideline for about 2 months. It’s great news that the surgery went well and that he will be able to ride again. As many of you have no doubt heard, three jockeys – 2 in Australia and 1 in Indiana – lost their lives riding this past week. It’s easy to forget sometimes just how dangerous this sport is for both the human and equine athletes.
Now is the time to start thinking about 2015. I’m not sure that we will be doing too much different than this season from an operational perspective. There always is a lot of conversation about the Club dynamics and how things can be changed but we end up coming back to the mission of the Club: to educate Minnesotans about horse racing. We won’t lose our focus on that goal and, should members wish to move on to a potential “for profit” group, start your own group or buy a horse on your own – much the better. That is kind of the point, really: to get folks to the point that, if they wish, they can venture out on their own to join existing partnerships, form one of their own or go solo. If you have any questions, please feel free to let them rip. I’ll try and answer your questions the best I can be they about the Club, joining groups or how to start your own.
Both TERICE and MARYJEAN are back in Clay’s barn at Hawthorne and are doing okay. As we thought, TERICE was very keen to move under Tim Thornton in her race and he had to dance a fine line between trying to rate her but not discouraging her so much that she wouldn’t run anymore either. He felt that when she swung to the lead that that was going to be all she wrote but she tired late – perhaps because of her struggles earlier in the race. We know she’s okay on the dirt and has enjoyed success over a sloppy racetrack but the track was sealed (rolled to keep the moisture out) and perhaps a bit hard and wasn’t entirely to her liking.
MARYJEAN was simply too far back early and when the time came to run, she did her thing, swinging wide and passing everyone (almost) in the lane to put 5 1/2 between her and the third place horse but she was just too far from the eventual winner to catch her. It was a solid second and a check that paid the bills ($2600) but she will run again at Hawthorne next. Though the money was good in Ohio, part of the reason Clay was able to get three horses there was that trainer Joel Berndt was heading there with his own and had some room. Otherwise, he says rides to get to the Cleveland area infrequent and, therefore, expensive, so we’ll wait at Hawthorne and look to go about 3 weeks after her last start (October 1).
While there is nothing in the book for TERICE over the turf at this level ($8000), we will wait a few weeks and see what develops. Worst case we will run her back over the dirt again at this level or maybe even a step lower since the objective now for us is twofold – get a win, but also have them move on to new homes.
In another first for the Racing Club, a horse owned by the Club won year end honors, TERICE was named Claiming Horse of the Year by the press covering Canterbury Park along with others involved in the daily racing at the racetrack.
TERICE made a big, sweeping move through the turn for home but jut could not make up enough ground through the lane and we had to settle for our second consecutive second place finish. I watched the replay several times and I don’t see what Martin could have done differently to save more ground. Breaking from the 10 post again made it tough for us to get any kind of close position around the track and I thought he did a nice job getting to the rail and saving what ground he could. There was simply too much traffic to make any other kind of move than the one he did.
We went back to see her but she had not made it back from the test barn at that point.
The girls will get packed up and we’ll head to Hawthorne. We have a couple of gamers and we will be very aggressive in placing them there in order to maximize our possibility of winning and if we get claimed, we get claimed.
Here is our last Michelle Benson production of the season. Much thanks to her for a great job chronicling the season on video as well as to my love and partner, Heather Frisbie, on the great still shots (when I got her to the track on time!!).
TERICE will make her Club debut Friday night in a $7500 Starter Allowance going a mile and 70 on the turf. It’s a spicy little spot for her with a couple of allowance winners in the field of seven. Alex Canchari is aboard which is always nice, but especially so since he rode her to her last win for trainer Nevada Liftin.
Group 1 is the paddock group for Friday. Michelle Benson will be there as I will be landing at MSP at 8:12 (and Heather will be picking me up) and I’m sure that Jeff will be around as well.
I will post a rundown later in the week.
MARYJEAN came out of her race fine and we’ll make sure of that when she heads back to the track and gallops. We’ll look for a spot for her and, hopefully, it’ll be a bit of a softer one.
MJ and TERICE appear to be doing well. TERICE heads back to the track to gallop tomorrow and MJ continues to train well. It looks like we’ll be bringing back (at least trying to!) MJ on July 27th, same level, while TERICE may make her Club debut on August 3 in a step up.
The RSVPs for this Sunday’s tour are a little over 30. If you haven’t sent me your RSVP to email@example.com for Sunday yet, please do so. We will meet you all at the stable gate at 9:30 AM. While we may wait a couple of minutes, late comers cannot be allowed entry to the backside, so please be prompt. We will check out the end of morning works, visit the admin building, go up to the pool and then head over to Clay’s barn to see our girls. Here are some ground rules to keep in mind:
– There will be a LOT of walking so wear comfortable shoes and be prepared. The tour will take about 2 hours, perhaps a bit more so be comfortable and dress for the weather;
– If you’re bringing kids, keep a close hold of them. There is a lot of potential for injury and we cannot be responsible for kids wandering off. Which leads to the next point…
– Horses have the right of way at all times. We’ll keep the group close together and make sure that we give the horses a wide berth. There will be a lot of activity this time of the morning and we need to make sure that we stay out of the way.
– When we get to Clay’s barn we will gather outside, like we did last year for those of you that went on last year’s tour. There are simply too many of us to go inside the barn. Remember that while this is a tour for us, it’s also their workplace. Juan will bring our gals out one at a time and there should be the opportunity for petting, photos and mint giving!
The Club finally claimed our second horse, a six year old mare named TERICE.
Foaled in Minnesota, at our very own Michelle Benson’s family farm, TERICE has been a very solid mare. She has 35 career starts, notching her 10th win this evening. She’s even a stakes winner, taking a minor stake at Fonner Park a few years ago.
She appears to be better than she ever has been, earning a career high 83 Beyer Speed figure in her last start.
While this race was a $7500 claiming race, we claimed her for $12,500 because there is a premium placed on Minnesota breds in open company. However, we will also earn additional money as a Minnesota bred in open company where she has been competing successfully.