Skip to comments.Rags-to-riches horse and jockey compete for Triple Crown glory
Posted on 06/04/2012 8:14:15 AM PDT by Hojczyk
The Belmont Stakes, the most eagerly watched horse race in America since crowds of the 1930s cheered on an unbeatable champion will be run on Saturday featuring a rags-to-riches combination of horse and jockey competing for glory.
Gutierrez is not allowing negative thoughts to undermine his enjoyment of his time in the spotlight.
"To be honest, I can't believe this is happening still. It's like a fairy tale," he said. "It gets a little bit nervous at times but I'll try my best to put that aside, because at the end of the day it's going to be just my horse and I.
"I just want to be at my best because my horse will be at his best and we're in this thing together.
"From the first time I met him, I knew he was the one. He's a fighter, he's got the biggest heart ever. He likes to win."
Like many top race horses, I'll Have Another is a descendant of the great Northern Dancer. Mr Sisterson claims the horse has great confidence on the track.
He said: "He's a really laid back character, nothing fazes him. It's only when he gets to the track that he becomes all business.
"You never know if you'll get a chance like this again, so you just take as much from it as you can. We're just excited, just really confident, being in this position."
Not everyone agrees that Gutierez is a shoe-in to take I'll Have Another to the Triple Crown.
Kent Desormeaux, the last rider to attempt the Triple Crown, in 2008, told the Baltimore Sun that the rookie horse and rider didn't have a hope at the Belmont Stakes, widely seen as the most challenging of the three races.
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
Steve Cauthen and Affirmed were rookies too, come to think of it....It will be a hard race for this horse to win, nevermind the fresh horses coming in, but I wish them luck.
Wasn’t Desourmeaux supposed to ride a horse in Derby? He got bumped because he flunked a drug test the day before. Sounds like whinning to me.
Finneran, the horse that came in 3rd in the Derby did not run the Preakness. But I still like IHA in the longer Belmont. $17,000,000 in the pot.
Of course the horse is a Rookie. They’re all 3 years olds!
This has been a long-time coming since the last Triple Crown winner -- although Afleet Alex should've done it but was unexpectedly upset by Giacomo at the Derby, only to win decisively at the next two races.
Not anyone (or almost all) who ever served in our glorious Military; that is going back a couple of decades and more, when it was not all Wussified and PC (our Warriors can't have a beer in AfGan, why?) and we knew how to have a good time and unwind, when off duty
I know nothing of racing so could you explain why (in your view) it would be a hard race for him to win and why “fresh horses coming in” means aside from the obvious, meaning they are different horses, would make a difference?
Article says Kent Desormeaux claims the horse and rider have no chance because they have no experience at Belmont. I guess I can understand the pressure thing re the rider but why would the Horse suffer from never raced at any certain location?
That being said, Desormeaux is nuts if he thinks I'll Have Another has no chance to win.
IHA has a good chance of winning, but the threat he faces is from good fresh horse that has the endurance to go the longer distance at Belmont. IHA has had two hard races in less then two months. That takes a lot out of a horse, so a fresh horse will have the best chance of beating him. The great Zenyatta only ran about once every couple of months to insure she was fresh for every race. Zenyatta won 19 of 20 races and only lost her last race by a nose. Being fresh means a lot, horses take a long time to recover from a hard race. Recall the Rachel Alexander never recovered from her hard race at the Woodward. But it is going to take a very good horse to beat IHA so my money would be on him. I think with a good trip he will win.
The name was Dullahan.
Don’t tell me that everyone has forgotten that Great horse, Secretariat. He won it by 31 lengths!
“Kent Desormeaux, the last rider to attempt the Triple Crown, in 2008, told the Baltimore Sun that the rookie horse and rider didn’t have a hope at the Belmont Stakes”
BS Kent...ALL triple crown winning horses are ‘Rookie’s’, and only Eddie Arcaro, aboard Citation in 1948 was not a ‘Rookie’ rider.
Thanks. I had no idea it takes a horse so long to recover from a race. That is some fascinating stuff.
IHA has the running style to win it but 3 strenuous races in a row is hard on a horse. That’s why there have been so few Triple Crown winners, IMO.
Years ago, it was common to race horses more often. The best horses today race, on average, once every 4-5 weeks. To win the Triple Crown, the horse has to win THREE races in 7 weeks. It’s a strain on “modern” horses whose breeding has become more refined. Fresh horses, those that haven’t raced in a month or so, will be more likely to win, given that they’re not as worn down overall as those who have competed in all 3 races, like IHA. The Belmont is a great race for a trainer with a distance runner to try to win over IHA. Rags To Riches, a filly bred for distance, won it a few years ago after foregoing the K.Derby and Preakness.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but what I took away from KD’s statement was that “a rookie horse and rider” will have little to no chance of winning the Belmont. Cauthen and Affirmed aside, the jockey aboard is young and may not have experience at Belmont and IHA probably hasn’t raced there yet. Belmont is a more forgiving track, but given the odds, IHA probably won’t win. IHA has a good chance, you’re right, but KD has history on his side. I hope IHA wins anyway!
Some horses prefer one racing surface over another. After a race, you’ll hear jockeys say that the horse didn’t like the “feel” of the track. Sometimes this is just an excuse, but some horses do run better on grass or in mud than others. Most trainers will ship their horses to the next track ahead of time to give the animal a ‘feel’ for the surface. Tracks tend to be deeper near the rail which slows a horse down. There are also better “racing lanes” on a track, where water drains away more quickly, leaving a faster surface.
Thanks, I’m always amazed at how little I know and how much there is to learn.
I wish I had believed this when I was a kid.
I guess what so amazes me about this is the Horses are so powerful and yet takes so long for them to fully recover from the effort the put out on a race.
I wonder what the equivalent would be for a human? What action would they have to engage in which would take a month to recover from? The first thing coming to mind is a prize fight but that’s physical abuse in the sense people are whaling on each other while a Horse race is more akin to a foot race. Do long distance runners take a month to recuperate fully? I have no idea but it is very interesting and I thank you for your answer.
totally agree about the "modern" horse, not the same as earlier horses like Forego and Kellso.
I can only guess that running a marathon or scaling Mt. Everest would be equivalent. In my opinion, horses are coddled too much. If not for the speed they’re expected to go at, American horses would race more often. Some do, but horses of Triple Crown caliber make more money at stud than in racing, so the incentive is to baby them. Not that long ago, Standardbreds, or Harness racing horses would run heats, sometime 2 or 3 in ONE DAY. The Grand National, in England, is 4 miles over 30 fences, but the average speed is much slower.
Either way, RTRiches had 5 weeks off before the Belmont. I got to see Forego and Willie Shoemaker at Delaware Park in 1976. It wasn’t a race, but a post parade, with him cantering in front of the grandstand. The track gave out baseball hats with Forego on them in yellow and white. Unfortunately, I no longer know where the hat is. —SIGH—