Mar 152017

Sal’s Countdown to the

2017 Kentucky Derby




Image result for yogi berra pictures

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

Yogi Berra

Paulick Report – McCraken Retains Top Spot In NTRA Top 3-Year-Old Poll

Bloodhorse – Haskin – Derby Dozen – March 14, 2017 – Presented by Shadwell Farm

TDN – WinStar TDN Derby Top Twelve for Mar. 14

DRF – Derby Watch

Brisnet – Scully –   Kentucky Derby Report March 15: Mastery sidelined, Tapwrit romps in Tampa

TwinSpires Blog – Battalion Runner joins Scully’s Kentucky Derby Top 10


National Post – Ottawa Citizen – Duffy – Unsolved in the Ottawa Valley, Part 1: The killing of Randy Rankin

Ottawa Citizen – Duffy – Unsolved in the Ottawa Valley, Part 2: The locals call it death row

Ottawa Citizen – Duffy – Unsolved in the Ottawa Valley, Part 3: The story of Jimmy Wise

Ottawa Citizen – Duffy – Unsolved in the Ottawa Valley, Part 4: Decades of pain and the hunt for justice

Ottawa Citizen – Top 50 Irish proverbs and sayings you should know for St. Patrick’s Day


2017 Dubai World Cup Form Guide

Odds Checker – 2017 Dubai World Cup – Win

TwinSpires Blog – Reilly –   2017 Dubai World Cup Carnival study guide

sabato marzo 18

TwinSpires Blog – Five things to know about the Rebel

Lady and the Track – Sigmon – California Shippers Hold Favoritism in Oaklawn’s Rebel 

TwinSpires Blog – Scully – Uncontested a rebound pick in Rebel

TwinSpires Blog – Hanson – Looking for a star-spangled result in Rebel

TDN – Triple Crown Throwdown: Rebel

TDN – Bianca – Opportunity Knocks in Wild Rebel

DRF – Aragona – TimeformUS Kentucky Derby prep analysis: Fast pace in Rebel could elevate longshot Silver Dust

NY Times – Tracy – For Some Basketball Coaches, Ties That Bind Are Better Off Left in the Closet

Yelling doesn’t win ball games. It doesn’t put any points on the scoreboard. And I don’t think words win ball games all the time. Players do. Preparation does.

Jerry Tarkanian

Bloodhorse –   El Areeb Likely Headed to Wood Memorial

Bloodhorse – Adolphson –  Antonio Sano’s Faith Justified With Gunnevera

Lady and the Track – Brito – Gunnevera: The Hope of a Nation

TwinSpires Blog –  How to bet the late Pick 4 on Santa Margarita day at Santa Anita

TDN – Bianca – ‘Dori’ vs. ‘City’ in Santa Margarita

Paulick Report – Arrogate ‘All Good So Far’ In Preparation For 14-Horse Dubai World Cup Field

ABC – Mark Kavanagh, Danny O’Brien allowed to continue horse training after VCAT overturns cobalt doping bans

giorno di San Patrizio

venerdi marzo 17

National Post – Terence Corcoran: St. Patrick’s Day’s troubled history in Canada

Garden and Gun – Sprouse –  The World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade

The Irish gave the bagpipes to the Scotts as a joke, but the Scotts haven’t seen the joke yet.

Oliver Herford

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Gorajec – This simple initiative in transparency can help win back a skeptical racing public

Bloodhorse – Johnson – Handicapping a Deep Field in the Rebel Stakes

Horse Racing Nation – Zipse – Rebel Stakes 2017: Odds and Analysis

Brisnet – Hanson –  Malagacy faces stern test stretching out in Rebel

Horse Race Insider –  Jicha – The road to Louisville goes through Tampa

Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.

William Butler Yeats

TwinSpires Blog –  Mucciolo’s Sophomore Spotlight: Rebel Stakes Preview

Bloodhorse –  Mo Town Breezes for Possible Florida Derby Start

TwinSpires Blog –  Reilly – Catching up with 2016 OBS March Sale top sellers including Monaco, Master Plan

Lady and the Track – Perdue – From Hot Dogs to Hip Numbers: One Woman’s Journey Into Racehorse Ownership

Paulick Report –  Stricter Regulations Announced For Canadian Horse Processing Facilities

Every St. Patrick’s Day every Irishman goes out to find another Irishman to make a speech to.
Shane Leslie

giovedi marzo 16

NY Times –   Victor – Lack of Oxford Comma Costs Maine Company Millions in Overtime Dispute

I come from an Italian family. One of the greatest and most profound expressions we would ever use in conversations or arguments was a slamming door. The slamming door was our punctuation mark.

Mario Batali

Sal says that the cell phone and other modern communication devices have robbed us of one of the greatest punctuation marks – slamming down the receiver.

Bloodhorse – Wincze-Hughes – American Anthem Carries Baffert’s Rebel Stakes Hopes

TDN – Baffert Back for More Rebel Glory

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – It’s a cruel blow that Mastery may not get to fulfil his racetrack destiny

Paulick Report – Voss – ‘You Don’t Want To End Up Like Me’: Former Jockey Suffering From Chronic Head Trauma Denied Financial Assistance

NY Times – Schonbrun and Mather – 2017 March Madness: What to Expect in the First Round

Garden and Gun – G&G’s Ultimate Dog Breed Bracket

National Post – McDowell – Death To The Chicken Finger

Paulick Report – Congrats Filly Tops Record OBS March Sale At $1.7 Million

TDN – Sherack and DiDonato – Million-Dollar Babies Propel OBS to Records

US Racing – Ransom – In the Breeding Game, Sometimes Love Is More Important Than Money

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Smith and Willoughby – A trio emerging as stallions of real importance

Standardbred Canada – Proposal To Root Out ‘Beard’ Trainers

NY Times – Berkman – U.S. Women’s Hockey Team Plans to Boycott World Championship Over Pay Dispute

TDN – Xpressbet Announces Preakness Big Bet

Nation’s Restaurant News – Maze – Goodbye Ruby Tuesday?

Ruby Tuesday

mercoledì marzo 15

Reuters – Binnie – ‘Blonde Bombshell’ racehorse stolen in Italy

NY Times – Waldstein – In Canada’s National Basketball Championship, the Madness Is Muted

DRF – Privman – Derby Watch: A pinch-hit home run? It’s happened before

DRF – Privman – Kentucky Derby: Who’s hot, who’s not for March 15

Mama Told Me Not to Come

TwinSpires Blog – Mucciolo’s Sophomore Spotlight Recap: San Felipe & Tampa Bay Derby

TwinSpires Blog – Scully – Kentucky Derby BRIS Speed Rating Report March 14: San Felipe post-race blues, Tapwrit ascends in Tampa Bay Derby

Bloodhorse – Ron Mitchell – Strong Demand at Top Fuels OBS Opener

TDN – Oppenheim: 2017–Big Winners So Far

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Archer – Okay, Winx is incredible – but is she really better than ‘the mare of the world’?

Paulick Report – Paulick – For His Strength, Record, Garrett Gomez Deserves Hall Of Fame

US Racing – Jockey Profile: Dylan Davis

Horse Race Insider – Berner – It’s Horse Racing But It’s Still Rock ‘n Roll to Me

Paulick Report – Newly Proposed Legislation Limits Cuomo To Two Appointments On Privatized NYRA Board

Et tu, Brute?

Julius Caesar

ESPN – Gomez – Baseball is America’s pastime, but which America?

martedì marzo 14

Paulick Report – Voss – ‘I’m Screwed’: Maryland Case Of Missing Workers’ Comp Illustrates Problems With Costly System

Down The Stretch – 2017 $10,000,000 Group 1 Dubai World Cup Possible Runners

The National – Riddle – Dubai World Cup: Bob Baffert says top-rated Arrogate will arrive at Meydan ready to run

The National – Riddle – Dubai World Cup: Arrogate just part of an expected large contingent of US competitors

DRF – Rampellini – Pletcher trio arrives for Rebel Stakes card

Bloodhorse – Shulman – Tapwrit Brings Together Happy, Disparate Owners

Paulick Report – Pletcher Plans Another Start Before Derby For ‘Improving’ Tapwrit

TDN – Caulfield – Pedigree Insights: Tapwrit

DRF – Privman – Road to the Derby: Tampa Bay Derby analysis

DRF – Privman – Road to the Derby: San Felipe Stakes analysis

DRF – Privman – Mastery back at barn after surgery on leg

Paulick Report – Golden – Iliad, Term Of Art Exit San Felipe Well, Point To Santa Anita Derby

Paulick Report – Battalion Runner Headed To Florida Derby, Benefits From ‘Added Time Between Races’

Bloodhorse – Hawthorne Race Course Joins NTRA

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Sexton – Breeders can’t get enough of him as it is – and that’s unlikely to change this week

NY Times – Ruiz – Willing to Blow the Whistle on Doping? New Legal Aid Group Wants to Help

The Globe and Mail – Mosby – We are what we ate: Canada’s history in cuisines

TDN – NYRA Expands Partnership with FOX Sports, Claiborne to Sponsor

lunedi marzo 13

NY Times – Asimov – How to Drink Wine

Sal always thought you poured it into a glass and tipped the glass into your mouth. Wonder what Asimov has up his sleeve.

The true delight is in the finding out rather than in the knowing.

Horse Racing Nation – Zipse – Kentucky Derby 2017: Who’s Hot // Who’s Not

Horse Race Insider – Pricci – This Game Tugs at Your Heart from Both Sides

ESPN – DRF – Watchmaker – For a brief moment, search for Derby colt was over

ESPN – DRF – Privman – Mastery’s injury leaves trainer Bob Baffert ‘in shock’

TDN – Tapwrit Well After TB Derby Score

TwinSpires Blog – Caldwell – It Tiz Well joins Road to the Kentucky Oaks

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Grassick – Why this is the week that counts the most for Joseph O’Brien

ESPN – Brennan – A full guide to every team in the 2017 NCAA tournament

ESPN – Fawkes – Odds for all 68 teams to win NCAA tournament

NY Times – Tracy, Schonbrun and Mather – 2017 N.C.A.A. Tournament Bracket: Who Has the Edge in Each Region?

NY Times – Tracy – N.C.A.A. Tournament: Familiar Favorites and Compelling Underdogs

NY Times – Tracy – Think the N.C.A.A. Bracket’s Too Easy? Try One of These Pools

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary – Zuccoli – Racing in Italy in 2017: a (true) story to make you laugh – or cry

Paulick Report – ‘Undesireable State Of Affairs’: Program Training In Italian Case Of Stefano Botti

Red Hill Mining Town

National Post – A fresh indignity for Canada’s smallest province: P.E.I. wiped off several maps

Brisnet – Reilly – Arrogate ‘just cruised’ another seven furlongs for Dubai World Cup

domenica marzo 12

2017 Kentucky Derby Prep Races

Rebel Oaklawn Park Mar 18, 2017 50-20-10-5
UAE Derby Meydan Racecourse Mar 25, 2017 100-40-20-10
Spiral Turfway Park Mar 25, 2017 50-20-10-5
Sunland Derby Sunland Park Mar 26, 2017 50-20-10-5
Florida Derby Gulfstream Park Apr 1, 2017 100-40-20-10
Louisiana Derby Fair Grounds Apr 1, 2017 100-40-20-10
Wood Memorial Aqueduct Apr 8, 2017 100-40-20-10
Blue Grass Keeneland Apr 8, 2017 100-40-20-10
Santa Anita Derby Santa Anita Park Apr 8, 2017 100-40-20-10
Arkansas Derby Oaklawn Park Apr 15, 2017 100-40-20-10
Lexington Keeneland Apr 15, 2017 10-4-2-1

Today’s average American is more apt to rebel against a tennis shoe not coming in the right color than against the slow erosion of our democratic freedom.
Marianne Williamson

These are my new shoes. They’re good shoes. They won’t make you rich like me, they won’t make you rebound like me, they definitely won’t make you handsome like me. They’ll only make you have shoes like me. That’s it.

Charles Barkley

Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes

Sal says that if Phil could trudge this gem out every Rebel so can Sal:
A racetrack, a killing, and the history of organized crime in Hot Springs, Arkansas – Grantland

2017 Road to the Kentucky Oaks

Bourbonette Oaks Turfway Park Mar 25, 2017 50-20-10-5
Sunland Park Oaks Sunland Park Mar 26, 2017 50-20-10-5
Gulfstream Park Oaks Gulfstream Park Apr 1, 2017 100-40-20-10
Fair Grounds Oaks Fair Grounds Apr 1, 2017 100-40-20-10
Ashland Keeneland Apr 8, 2017 100-40-20-10
Santa Anita Oaks Santa Anita Park Apr 8, 2017 100-40-20-10
Gazelle Aqueduct Apr 8, 2017 100-40-20-10
Fantasy Oaklawn Park Apr 14, 2017 100-40-20-10
Beaumont Keeneland Apr 16, 2017 10-4-2-1

NCAA logo

NY Times – Tracy – The N.C.A.A Tournament Challenge: Determining Who’s In and What’s Their Seed

Sporting News – Fagan – March Madness 2017: NCAA Tournament bracket projections update

NY Times – Macur – Another Woman at the March Madness Mike? That Only Took 2 Decades

Rebel Girl

LA Times – Woike – Prop wagers for March Madness? You can bet on it

I’ll watch the kids play, have a big steak with my friends, stay in a nice hotel, sign a lot of autographs, then go back to Vegas and tell my alumni how tough recruiting is.

Jerry Tarkanian

USA Today – Lawler – 5 things to binge-watch to get ready for March Madness

Sal’s always been partial to:

Raging Bull

Bull Durham

Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Rebel Without a Cause

Twist n Shout

NY Times – Tracy – Mike Krzyzewski’s Secret to Staying Relevant: Bitmoji

Me and Julio Down By The Schoolyard

The spirit of rebellion can only exist in a society where a theoretical equality conceals great factual inequalities. The problem of rebellion, therefore, has no meaning except within our own Western society.
Albert Camus

Paulick Report – Albanese – The Quiet Man: Mandella Lets His Horses Do The Talking (First Of Four Parts)

Paulick Report – Albanese – The Quiet Man: Mandella’s Bad ‘N Big Beginnings (Part Two)

Paulick Report – Albanese – The Quiet Man: ‘I Don’t Think You Ever Stop Learning’ (Part Three)

Paulick Report – Albanese – The Quiet Man: Mandella And His Horses Find Their Comfort Zone (Last Of Four Parts)

Rebel Yell

You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life.
Albert Camus

Paulick Report – Petrov, Silver Dust, Uncontested All Prep For ‘Real, Real Tough’ Rebel Stakes

Bloodhorse – Rebel Prospects Turn in Oaklawn Works

A full mind is an empty bat.
Branch Rickey

DRF – Standardbred trainer suspended for 15 years after allegedly beating horse

Paulick Report – Indiana Trainer Suspended For 15 Years For Severely Abusing Horse

Bloodhorse – Angst – Too Many Holes in Racing’s Rule Net

This Mess We’re In

NY Times – Asimov – Irish Whiskeys Rise Above the Annual Celebration

I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical.
Thomas Jefferson

Don’t Let Me Down

Brisnet – Neulist – A Day at the Races: A Hawthorne Homecoming

One Tree Hill

The Globe and Mail – Duhatschek – Hockey’s biggest shift: Fifty years of evolution in NHL coaching

If you can’t beat ’em in the alley, you can’t beat ’em on the ice.

Conn Smythe

Girl Next Door

National Post – McParland – Kelly McParland: Big Daddy Bettman just can’t shake his unrequited love for Arizona

The more your players have to think on the basketball court, the slower their feet get.
Jerry Tarkanian

The Globe and Mail – Wheeler – Hello Destroyer: A vulnerable story that’s not your typical hockey film

Girl Next Door

Being in politics is like being a football coach. You have to be smart enough to understand the game, and dumb enough to think it’s important.
Eugene McCarthy

The Bitter Southerner – Gallant – Delicious Birds, Dangerous Times

Once smaller tracks have delivered their product through modern mediums with a precise gambling message, then I believe it’s time to work on the gamble itself.

First, most –even those with small on-track crowds– continually want to race on weekend afternoons, competing directly with large tracks. If this does not make particular economic sense (or there’s a hard and fast reason for it), why not race when others are not? A small track carding their deepest, most-bettable card when others are not racing can be fruitful.

Second, if a track–like so many–has poor on-track handle and higher than average takeout, why not lower it? A signal fee of, for example, 4%, means the venue (and their horsemen) receive 4 cents of each dollar bet whether the top-line juice is 25% or 15%. Is there a huge downside in going with a lower number?

Third, a lot of smaller tracks try to copy the blockbuster track experience with big stakes races and big days. Horsemen usually sign-off on this tactic and have for some time. Instead, why not offer some of this money out in seeded pools? At large tracks, seeded pools–i.e. carryovers–increase handle because they create value via a takeout reduction. At smaller tracks, it’s more than that, because even a small carryover can boost pool size, which is very important to gamblers.

TDN – Towers – For Smaller Tracks, It’s About the Deliverables & The Gamble

An urban reserve is a chance for a First Nation to purchase and control land within a city while agreeing to abide by city bylaws and pay equivalent property taxes in exchange for city services. Enoch says it’s hoping for land near the river valley.

Edmonton Journal – Urban reserve in Edmonton one step closer after Enoch agreement signed

Sal says that Mayor Iveson should take this opportunity to kill 2 birds with one kidney stones throw away from the North Saskatchewan. Lease the land that Edmonton Northlands presently misoccupies to Enoch for the property tax equivalent that is one hell of a lot more than the bungling behemoth’s $1 per year and have Enoch assume the debt on the great white woolly mammoth. The old Rexall Place is circular and could form the base of a giant teepee entertainment centre that Enoch could fill given their experience at River Cree.

Sal says that given the opportunity Sal’s sure that Enoch could have the great white mammoth so busy that they would have to expand and make this city proud of what has come to be the taxpayer’s financial albatross.

Sal’s had a tour of the barns and track at Enoch and will say that they make the barns at Northlands Park look like they’ve had no repairs since Hurricane Benny blew through them.

Day after day, day after day,
We stuck, nor breath nor motion;
As idle as a painted ship
Upon a painted ocean.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Apparently, Coliseum Steaks and Pizza is an institution unto itself, with or without the Oilers.

We quickly saw why. Unlike Northlands management, who have proposed their “Vision 2020” to rejuvenate the former arena and its grounds, this Coliseum’s owners are from the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” school of management.

Edmonton Journal – Gold – Dining out: Coliseum Steaks and Pizza remains at top of its game

Sal says that Gold needs to do a tad more research and see what Edmonton city council has said about Edmonton Northlands Vision 2020 folly.

The city reviewed the proposal and said Northlands’ plan to overhaul the arena, EXPO Centre and horse racing track overestimated the amount of revenue the changes would bring in, and underestimated the cost of the massive overhaul.

Additionally, city staff said there’s not enough demand for an additional six rinks throughout the year. In the winter, there would be demand, but not in the summer.

INews 880 – Kornik – City council may change the bylaw around Northlands’ debt payments

Edmonton Journal – Stolte – Edmonton moves to grant further Northlands debt relief

16 Tonnes

Garden and Gun – Horn – A Spring Bourbon Tonic

TDN – Rees – Aftercare Discussion Kicks off NHBPA Convention

Bloodhorse – Johnsen Calls on Tracks, Horsemen to Work Together

Paulick Report – Rees – ‘ADW Growth And What It Means For Our Future’ The Topic On Day 2 Of National HBPA Convention

Bloodhorse – National HBPA Panel Discusses ADW Wagering

TDN – Rees – National HBPA Out of Competition and Hair Testing Panel

Deacon Blue

TDN – DeBernardis – New Partners Unite for Noble Freud

There’s as much crookedness as you want to find. There was something Abraham Lincoln said – he’d rather trust and be disappointed than distrust and be miserable all the time. Maybe I trusted too much.
John Wooden

Brisnet – Acully – Gutting aftermath to San Felipe

US Racing – Ransom – Mastery Wins San Felipe, Derby Dreams End with Condylar Fracture

Bloodhorse – Balan – Mastery Dominates San Felipe, Sustains Injury After

ESPN – DRF – Privman – Mastery’s victory overshadowed by condylar fracture

TwinSpires Blog – Shapiro – The highs and lows of Mastery’s San Felipe

Paulick Report – Mastery Suffers Condylar Fracture After Dominating San Felipe

TDN – Mastery Injured in San Felipe Romp

Freedom has cost too much blood and agony to be relinquished at the cheap price of rhetoric.
Thomas Sowell

Bloodhorse – Wincze Hughes – Tapwrit Shows His Class in Tampa Bay Derby

ESPN – DRF – Fortuna – Tapwrit’s win in Tampa Bay Derby sets stakes 1 1/16-mile record

TDN – Tapwrit Gives Pletcher Another Tampa Bay Derby

Bloodhorse – Wincze-Hughes – Champion Classic Empire Back on the Worktab

Paulick Report – Battalion Runner Headed To Florida Derby, Benefits From ‘Added Time Between Races’

Paulick Report – ‘Talented’ Untrapped Completes Final Preparations For Rebel Stakes


Bloodhorse – Shea – It Tiz Well Makes The Grade in Honeybee

TDN – Arch ‘Rising Star’ Stings Foes in Honeybee

Bloodhorse – Novak – Fifty Five Sets Stakes Record in Florida Oaks

ESPN – DRF – Fortuna – Fifty Five overtakes La Coronel to win Florida Oaks

Brisnet – Caldwell – Shaman Ghost scary good in Santa Anita Handicap

Bloodhorse – Balan – Shaman Ghost Wears Down Midnight Storm in Big ‘Cap

Every Little Thing She Does is Magic

LA Times – Mehta – Schwarzenegger says he’s not running for U.S. Senate

ESPN – DRF – McGee – Stanford captures Challenger Stakes in track-record time

National Post – Chris Selley: Signs of Toronto’s glorious past are returning, two spinning records at a time

National Post – All In God’s Time

TDN – Bal a Bali Gets His American Grade I

If the human body recognized agony and frustration, people would never run marathons, have babies, or play baseball.
Carlton Fisk

Hawthorne Sal

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