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  #26  
Old 11-18-2021, 09:16 AM
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Older Males

1. Knicks Go – He left no doubt with a dominating victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1).

2. Ginobili – Perhaps this one is a stretch, but he ran very well in the second half of the season and was a solid second in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1), while all the other older males struggled that weekend.

3. Max Player – It was a nice year for him; however, he was a no-show in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1).
freestar

4. Art Collector – He was just a bit out-classed in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) but still had a nice year for new trainer Bill Mott

5. Maxfield – His final career start is scheduled to come in the Clark Stakes (G1) November 26 at Churchill Downs.

Sleeper: Domestic Spending – A lack of pace really hurt him in his recent loss at Arlington Park in the Mister D. Stakes (G1) and he was an unfortunate late scratch from the Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1), but we’ll see this gelding again next year.
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Old 11-18-2021, 09:17 AM
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Older Females

1. Letruska – The hot pace in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1) cooked her; however, she still had an amazing year. This is your Older Female Champion.

2. Ce Ce – Quietly, she had a great year, topping it off with an upset in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1).

3. Monomoy Girl – She retired after suffering a minor injury during training.

4. Gamine – The big horse in the female sprint division suffered her first loss of the year at the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1).

5. Shedaresthedevil – She was solid all year long but was cooked by a hot pace at Del Mar, losing all chance at a Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1) victory. Purchased for $5 million at Keeneland shortly thereafter, she’ll reportedly return to Brad Cox for a 2022 campaign.

Sleeper: Dunbar Road – Wow…how did she lose the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (G1)?! She looked like a winner when they crossed the wire but lost the photo.
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  #28  
Old 11-18-2021, 09:18 AM
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3-Year-Old Males

1. Essential Quality – He was third in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1), but his campaign will likely land him a deserving 3-Year-Old Male of the Year award.

2. Medina Spirit – Love him or hate him, this horse showed nothing but heart all year long and did it one last time in a runner-up Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) effort.

3. Life Is Good – His accomplishments are fewer than the top two horses, but from a talent standpoint, this is the best 3-year-old in the country.

4. Hot Rod Charlie – Every time he showed up this year, he brought his best effort. This horse should continue to be a factor in 2022.

5. Golden Pal – His breath-taking Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1) win earned him a position on the list.

Sleeper: Jackie’s Warrior – It was a terrible way to end the year for this guy, but he is still a world-class horse who in my eyes just didn’t show up on Breeders’ Cup day.
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Old 11-18-2021, 09:18 AM
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3-Year-Old Females

1. Malathaat – There is no doubt she is the 3-Year-Old Filly of the Year; however, she had every chance to win the Distaff and couldn’t get it done.

2. Clairiere – She was an honest horse all season long but just couldn’t rack up enough victories to be #1 on this list.

3. Bella Sofia – Her year was solid; however, she flopped at the Breeders’ Cup.

4. Private Mission – She set a wicked pace in the Distaff, which cost her all chance of winning, but she still had a nice second half of the year.

5. Search Results – Her Test Stakes (G1) performance was just average and she’s now off for the rest of the year.

Sleeper: Army Wife – This filly has run consistently well all season long, showing up with strong efforts in many big stakes events.
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Old 11-18-2021, 09:19 AM
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Sprinters

1. Jackie’s Warrior – A complete dud in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) might cost him an Eclipse award, but we are leaving him at #1 for now.

2. Dr. Schivel – He lost a heartbreaker in the Sprint, but wow, he put together quite the year after coming back from injury.

3. Aloha West – It will be interesting to see what the voters do with this horse. His resume is not flashy; however, he won the championship race of the year in impressive fashion.

4. Following Sea – He might have been best in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) but was cut off while rallying on the inside. This is one you better watch closely moving forward.

5. Yaupon – Sadly, he was hurt in a workout at Santa Anita and retired.

Sleeper: Flagstaff – He skipped the Breeders’ Cup and is now off to a new career.
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  #31  
Old 11-18-2021, 09:19 AM
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2-Year-Old Males

1. Corniche – He left no doubt with a dominating win in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1).

2. Jack Christopher – Sadly, he had to scratch out of the Juvenile, so we really don’t know how good he is just yet.

3. Rockefeller – He shipped to Belmont Park and took home the Nashua Stakes (G3) impressively.

4. Gunite – He didn’t run well in the Champagne Stakes (G1), but he’s still a Grade 1 winner.

5. Pappacap – A solid runner-up finish in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) bodes well for his future.

Sleeper: Messier – His Bob Hope Stakes (G3) victory puts him in the mix heading into the last month of the season.
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  #32  
Old 11-18-2021, 09:20 AM
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2-Year-Old Females

1. Echo Zulu – This is the best horse in this division by a mile after a runaway victory in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1).

2. Pizza Bianca – A masterful ride and closing kick earned her an impressive win in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1).

3. Juju’s Map – She was ok in the Juvenile Fillies but was no match for Echo Zulu.

4. Ain’t Easy – A setback caused her to miss a start in the Juvenile Fillies.

5. Twilight Gleaming – This horse took the lead and never looked back in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1).

Sleeper: Hidden Connection – She will rebound from a non-effort in the Juvenile Fillies.
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  #33  
Old 11-18-2021, 09:43 AM
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Jerry Shottenkirk's Daily Picks

Aqueduct - Race #7
Picks Notes
#1 Alphalfa Rallied mildly on Belmont turf last out and can be close from the inside every step of the way; Dylan Davis has what it takes to get him going at top speed late.
#5 Dancing Buck Set the pace and finished second last out and will be the one to catch if he runs anything close to that; has shown the ability to run well in similar spots.
#4 Phantom Smoke Has won two of his four starts and comes off an allowance win; clearly a threat to pick them off late.
Race Summary Alphalfa can go early and can benefit from the inside trip; has what it takes to move well late in the game.

Aqueduct - Race #8
Picks Notes
#8 Grape Nuts Warrior Made a huge last move and came up a length short, finishing third; has the kick to prevail here.
#1 Mr. Kringle Gave way late last time at Belmont and can be a factor with a well-timed move.
#12 Battle Scars Was fifth in the Hawthorne Derby after winning the first two races of his career, both at Arlington; has a nose for the wire and would not be a major surprise here.
Race Summary Grape Nuts Warrior was coming on well last time and an similar move can put him into the winner's circle in this one.

Aqueduct - Race #6
Picks Notes
#6 Big Al's Gal Ran off to an easy win last time out in her first off the claim by Atras and takes a step down back to the price at which she was claimed.
#7 Saratoga Beauty Was along for third last out and drops off the claim by Atras; can make a run if the top one falters.
#1 Gentle Annie Closed for second and was claimed by Kantarmaci last out and has shown a steady late move; capable of running into the mix.
Race Summary Big Al's Gal drew off to an easy score last out and anything close to that gets it done; the only question is the drop in claiming price.
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Old 11-18-2021, 10:47 AM
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Laurel Park 5 Facts | November 16-21, 2021

November 16, 2021 | By Jeremy Plonk

Schedule:

Thursday-Sunday

Carryovers:

$5,527 // Rainbow 6 Thursday

Feature Race(s):

No stakes scheduled.

Key 1/ST BET Factors (top pick win %, top pick profit/loss):

Avg. Earnings Track (31%, -$2.20)

Avg. Speed (27%, -$12.40) *top-3 factor 2 straight weeks*

Days Since Last Race (21%, +$28.60)

Jockey/Trainer Trends from Betmix:

T: John ‘Jerry’ Robb // last week 8: 4-0-0 (50%, $4.96 ROI) // wins at $3, $10, $13, $52 // 4 wins with Xavier Perez

T: Brittany Russell // last week 6: 3-1-0 (50%, $2.77 ROI) // wins at $4, $9, $19 // 4: 2-1-0 with maidens

T: Ferris Allen III // last week 8: 2-0-1 (25%, $3.30 ROI) // $48 winner topping // both wins dirt claimers

J: Xavier Perez // last week 12: 5-0-0 (42%, $3.90 ROI) // 4 wins with John ‘Jerry’ Robb // $52 topper

J: Horacio Karamanos // last week 18: 4-1-5 (22%, $1.87 ROI) // $48 winner with Ferris Allen

** ROI reflects return on $1 win bet**
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  #35  
Old 11-18-2021, 10:48 AM
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Free Winners for Thursday, November 18th 2021 from THE LEGEND!
FREE HORSE PICKS
CHARLES TOWN
RACE #4
TIME: 8:25 PM EST
PICK: BET #1 Another Victory 8/5 odds to win
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  #36  
Old 11-18-2021, 11:01 AM
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Gulfstream 5 Facts | November 16-21, 2021

November 16, 2021 | By Jeremy Plonk

Schedule:

Thursday-Sunday

Carryovers:

$405,484 // Rainbow 6 Jackpot ($600,000-guaranteed pool Thursday)

$2,240 // Super High 5

Feature Race(s):

No stakes scheduled.

Key 1/ST BET Factors (top pick win %, top pick profit/loss):

Avg. 2 of 3 Speed (32%, +$6.60)

Win % (26%, - $5.80) *top-3 factor 2 straight weeks*

In The Money (ITM) % (21%, -$37.00) *top-3 factor 3 straight weeks*

Jockey/Trainer Trends from Betmix:

T: Saffie Joseph Jr. // last week 10: 4-2-2 (40%, $1.28 ROI) // wins at $5, $5, $7, $9 // 3 wins dirt sprints

T: Gerald Brooks // last week 8: 3-0-0 (38%, $2.01 ROI) // wins at $7, $9, $15 // 2-2 with Miguel Vasquez

T: Amador Sanchez // last week 6: 2-0-0 (33%, $2.13 ROI) // $11 and $13 winners both with Hector Berrios up

J: Hector Berrios // last week 6: 4-0-0 (67%, $4.17 ROI) // wins at $4, $11, $13, $20 // 3-3 in sprints

J: Samy Camacho // last week 17: 4-1-1 (24%, $1.39 ROI) // wins at $8, $9, $13, $16

** ROI reflects return on $1 win bet**
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  #37  
Old 11-18-2021, 02:08 PM
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Best Horse Racing Bets for Thursday, November 18, 2021
By J.W. Paine in Horse Racing

I’ve have plenty of provisional predictions for all three tracks I surveyed for my Thursday racing picks—Aqueduct Racetrack, Gulfstream Park, and Laurel Park.

Some of those predictions consider the weather, which can force a move of a turf race to the main track—and one is an admission that the best horse to choose is often the one that has the best stats, regardless of what the morning-line may say.

But don’t just take my word for it, check out the full race-cards and handicap to your heart’s content.

Good luck!
Thursday Picks for Aqueduct Racetrack

We’re on the main track for race three, a one-mile allowance optional claiming run for New York-bred three-year-olds and upward. For this race I like the 2/1 second-favored Thorny Tale, with Ruben Silvera in the irons.
This five-year-old gelding finished in the money 13 of his 22 career starts, winning eight, but his real career doesn’t seem to have started until 2021, where he’s moneyed seven of his nine starts—six of them wins. He’s rarely posted a speed figure under three digits this year.

Thorny Tail is trained by owner Jamie Ness, who put Silvera aboard for Thorny Tail’s five most recent victories.

Let’s switch to the turf course for race seven, a six-furlong allowance optional claiming run for New York-bred three-year-olds and upward.

If Manny Franco rides the 4/1 underdog Phantom Smoke into the starting gate, bet them to win. This three-year-old colt has the best stats in this eleven-horse field, with three money finishes in four career starts, two of them wins.

Christophe Clement trains Phantom Smoke for owners West Point Thoroughbreds, New Phoenix Stable, Steven Rocco, and Daniel Burke.

If that doesn’t happen, then bet the 7/2 Dancing Buck, ridden by Kendrick Carmouche. Trained by Michelle Nevin for owners J and N Stables and Diamond M Stable, this three-year-old gelding moneyed four of his seven career starts, winning two.

We’re still on the turf for race eight, a 1-1/16 miles allowance race for New York-bred three-year-olds and upward. This is another race that offers us some conditionals, so my first advice is to bet on the also-eligible/MTO favorite, Water’s Edge, ridden by Jose L. Ortiz.
This three-year-old colt moneyed all four of his career starts, winning one. He’s trained by forty-year racing veteran David G. Donk for owner-breeder Empire Equines LLC.

If Water’s Edge isn’t in this race, however, then my money goes to a win ticket on the 6/1 underdog, Battle Scars, with Manny Franco aboard.

This three-year-old gelding moneyed two of his three career starts, both wins.

Ranked in the top 100 trainers for 12 consecutive years, George Weaver trains Water’s Edge for owners-breeders Team Block and Rich Ege.
My Thursday Picks for Gulfstream Park

Let’s start on the all-weather track for race three, a one mile and 70 yards claiming race for three-year-olds and upward. I’m betting my two dollars on the 6/1 sleeper Mister Leonardo, piloted by Luca Panici.

This three-year-old colt finished in the money eight of his 17 career starts, winning three. Surprisingly, that gives him competitive stats in this six-horse field.

Joseph F. Orseno—who took Red Bullet to the winner’s circle at the Preakness in 2000—trains Mister Leonardo for owner Robert Cotran.

Moving to the main track for race five, a one-mile claiming run for three-year-olds and upward, I’m betting on the fourth-favored (at 9/2) Sassy But Smart, ridden by top jockey Edgard J. Zayas.
This four-year-old gelding finished in the money seven of his 13 career starts, winning two. Less than impressive, I agree, but those stats make him a leader in this otherwise lackluster nine-horse field.

With nearly three decades in the racing business, Peter R. Walder trains Sassy But Smart for EKB Stables.

Race seven is a six-furlong allowance optional claiming run on the main track for fillies and mares three years old and upward. My money’s on the 3/1 morning-line favorite, Loriloupies, with to jockey Edgard J. Zayas in the irons.

This four-year-old filly finished in the money seven of her ten career starts, winning four.

Saffie A. Joseph Jr., who’s having the best year of his career in terms of earnings, trains Loriloupies for owners Team Hanley and Paul Braverman.
Thursday’s Picks for Laurel Park

We’re on the main track for race five, a one-mile allowance run for three-year-olds and upward. While this might be one of the tighter races of the day, I think the winner will be the 3/1 morning-line favorite, Big Venezuela, piloted by Carlos Eduardo Lopez.
This three-year-old gelding finished seven of his 12 career starts in the money, winning three. He’ll do, particularly under the guidance of Lopez, who started his jockey career in his native Uruguay back in 2014 and is now establishing himself as a top-level professional his first year here in the States.

Bruno Tessore trains Big Venezuela for Proud Stable Inc.

Race seven is a one-mile allowance run on the main track for three-year-olds and upward. I like the 5/1 underdog Friendly Fella, with Johan Rosado aboard.

This five-year-old gelding moneyed 14 of his 24 career starts, winning six, establishing him as the statistical leader in this ten-horse field.

Ranked among the top 100 trainers for wins, earnings, or both every year since 2014, Claudio A. Gonzalez trains Friendly Fella for BB Horses.

Race eight is a six-furlong allowance optional claiming run on the main track for fillies and mares three years old and upward. With a caveat I’ll talk about in a moment, I’m backing the 1/1 morning-line favorite here: Don’t Call Me Mary, ridden by Mychel J. Sanchez.

This four-year-old filly moneyed seven of her eleven career starts, winning five, including the Dr. Teresa Garofalo Memorial Stakes (Black Type) in August at Parx Racing.

Hall of Famer Todd A. Pletcher trains Don’t Call Me Mary for owners Madaket Stables LLC, Mathis Stable LLC, and Brian Martin.
That caveat I mentioned earlier? Take a close look at the 5/1 underdog in this race, Fille d’Esprit, with Xavier Perez in the irons.

This five-year-old mare has the best stats in this six-horse field: Seven money finishes in nine career starts, six of them wins. The problem is, she was deadly on the track last year, but has only raced once in 2021, finishing sixth last month in the Maryland Million Distaff Stakes (Black Type) here at Laurel Park.

But prior to that, she won six of her eight races in 2020. She’s worth a show ticket if not an across-the-board wager.

Longtime racing veteran John J. Robb trains Fille d’Esprit for owners CJ I Phoenix Group and No Guts No Glory Farm.
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  #38  
Old 11-18-2021, 06:30 PM
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Jon White: Riva Ridge, a Champion Overshadowed

November 17, 2021 | By Jon White

On Nov. 5 at Del Mar, Corniche won the nation’s richest race for 2-year-olds, the Grade I, $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.

Owned by Speedway Stables, trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by Mike Smith, Corniche registered a 1 3/4-length victory in front-running fashion as the 7-5 favorite to remain undefeated in three starts.

Corniche completed 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.50. A $1.5 million auction purchase, the Kentucky-bred Quality Road colt is a slam-dunk to be voted a 2021 Eclipse Award as champion 2-year-old male.

It was 50 years ago this month that Riva Ridge won what at the time was the nation’s richest race for 2-year-olds, the $293,890 Garden State Stakes, which was contested at New Jersey’s Garden State Park.

Owned and bred by Meadow Stable, trained by Lucien Laurin and ridden by Ron Turcotte, Riva Ridge lurked within close range of the early pace, came on to get the lead at the eighth pole and drew clear to win by 2 1/2 lengths. The Kentucky-bred First Landing colt completed his 1 1/16-mile journey in 1:43 3/5.

Riva Ridge was this country’s top money-winning Thoroughbred of 1971, having accumulated earnings of $503,263. Adjusting for inflation, that sum would be the equivalent to earning $3,436,963 in 2021.

In balloting for Thoroughbred racing’s inaugural Eclipse Awards in 1971, Riva Ridge was voted champion 2-year-old male. Also at the first-ever Eclipse Awards dinner honoring the sport’s outstanding horses and humans of 1971, the announcement was made that Ack Ack had been elected 1971 Horse of the Year.

At 2, Riva Ridge made nine starts (three times more than Corniche’s number of starts at 2), winning seven. Prior to his season-ending victory in the Nov. 13 Garden State Stakes, Riva Ridge won the Flash Stakes at Saratoga on Aug. 2, the Futurity at Belmont Park on Sept. 18, the Champagne Stakes at Belmont on Oct. 9 and the Pimlico-Laurel Futurity at Laurel on Oct. 30.

Riva Ridge’s 2-year-old title in 1972 kicked off a remarkable run for Meadow Stable, Laurin and Turcotte. The owner-trainer-jockey team might well have swept back-to-back Triple Crowns if not for the sort of weather that makes umbrellas important turning the track to a sea of slop for the 1972 Preakness Stakes.

To illustrate how times have changed, when Laurin early in 1972 announced that Riva Ridge would be making “only” three starts before the Kentucky Derby, “disbelief set in among seasoned turf writers and fellow trainers, who were used to seeing Derby hopefuls run several more times than that,” David Schmitz wrote in BloodHorse’s book “Thoroughbred Champions: Top 100 Racehorses of the 20th Century.”

Nowadays, making three starts earlier in the year prior to the Kentucky Derby would be viewed as a robust schedule.

For example, only one of the 19 starters in this year’s Run for the Roses made more than three starts earlier in 2021. Who was that one horse? It was none other than Medina Spirit, who finished first.

With “only” three prior 1972 races under his belt, Riva Ridge led from start to finish in the Kentucky Derby. He won the roses by 3 1/4 lengths as the 3-2 favorite.

Riva Ridge then was sent to the post as an overwhelming 1-5 favorite in the Preakness. He finished fourth on the sloppy track. Bee Bee Bee splashed his way to a $39.40 upset victory.

After the Preakness, Riva Ridge rebounded when back on dry land to win the Belmont Stakes by seven lengths.

Following Riva Ridge’s dominant victory in the June 10 Belmont, he was sent to Hollywood Park to run in the July 1 Hollywood Derby at 1 1/4 miles on dirt. Backed down to 3-5 favoritism, Riva Ridge won the Hollywood Derby by only a neck while having to run extremely hard to edge Bicker. That battle seemingly took such a physical and/or mental toll on Riva Ridge that he went off form, losing his remaining five 1972 starts.

At age 4, Riva Ridge was voted a 1973 Eclipse Award as champion older male. He won the Grade I Brooklyn Handicap, Grade II Massachusetts Handicap and Grade II Stuyvesant Handicap.

“Who ever saw it will never forget his Brooklyn,” Charles Hatton wrote in the American Racing Manual. “He turned imminent defeat into victory when he condescended to get on the bit in the final frenetic strides, setting a world 1 3/16-mile mark of 1:52 2/5. He carried 127 pounds and repulsed True Knight a thrusting head in a desperate finish, conceding his rival 10 pounds.

“His campaign was punctuated also by a front-running success in the Massachusetts Handicap, in which he tied Whirlaway’s 31-year-old track mark. And he established an Aqueduct course record of 1:47 for nine furlongs in the Stuyvesant under 130, his maximum impost during the season.”

Despite his many accomplishments and accolades, Riva Ridge spent most of his life living in the shadow of his magnificent stablemate, Secretariat.

When Riva Ridge was the champion 3-year-old male of 1972, Secretariat, in a classic case of one-upmanship, not only received a 1972 Eclipse Award as champion 2-year-old male, Secretariat was voted Horse of the Year, a rarity for a 2-year-old.

The shadow Secretariat cast over Riva Ridge grew even larger in 1973. That was the year in which Secretariat’s spectacular 31-length Belmont Stakes triumph followed wins in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness to bring an end to a 25-year Triple Crown drought.

As an indication of Secretariat’s greatness, all these years later, he is credited with having run the fastest Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont of all time.

Secretariat was voted a second Eclipse Award Horse of the Year title in 1973, plus he garnered yet another Eclipse Award that year as champion 3-year-old male.

Riva Ridge even found himself having to take a back seat to Secretariat the one time they clashed on the track. Riva Ridge finished second to the famous Triple Crown hero in the 1973 Marlboro Cup at Belmont Park, a 1 1/8-mile race in which seven accepted invitations to participate.

“Performing generously, [Riva Ridge] wheeled past the quarter pole in front, in a hand-picked field including three other champions,” Hatton wrote. “But he finished a receding second to his stablemate Secretariat, the champion of champions.”

Riva Ridge finished 3 1/2 lengths behind Secretariat, whose final time of 1:45 2/5 sliced two-fifths off the world record set by Pink Pigeon on Santa Anita’s turf course in 1969.

In terms of BloodHorse’s list of the Top 100 Racehorses of the 20th Century, Secretariat ranked No. 2, behind only Man o’ War. Riva Ridge ranked No. 57.

On my list of the Top 100 Racehorses of the 20th Century, I likewise have Secretariat ranked No. 2. I have Riva Ridge at No. 56.

Below is my list of the Top 100 Racehorses of the 20th Century (in parentheses, when applicable, is where the horse ranked on BloodHorse’s list of the Top 100 Racehorses of the 20th Century):

1. Man o’ War (1)
2. Secretariat* (2)
3. Citation* (3)
4. Kelso (4)
5. Spectacular Bid (10)
6. Native Dancer (7)
7. Dr. Fager (6)
8. Seattle Slew* (9)
9. Count Fleet* (5)
10. Affirmed* (12)
11. Ruffian (35)
12. Swaps (20)
13. Forego (8)
14. Phar Lap (22)
15. Buckpasser (14)
16. Damascus (16)
17. Round Table (17)
18. Seabiscuit (25)
19. War Admiral* (13)
20. Tom Fool (11)
21. Colin (15)
22. John Henry (23)
23. Regret (71)
24. Exterminator (29)
25. Whirlaway* (26)
26. Sunday Silence (31)
27. Cigar (18)
28. Nashua (24)
29. Alydar (27)
30. Easy Goer (34)
31. Alysheba (42)
32. Bold Ruler (19)
33. Personal Ensign (48)
34. All Along (68)
35. Equipoise (21)
36. Gallant Fox* (28)
37. Sysonby (30)
38. Gallant Man (36)
39. Assault* (33)
40. Armed (39)
41. Sir Barton* (49)
42. Northern Dancer (43)
43. Omaha* (61)
44. Ack Ack (44)
45. Discovery (37)
46. Majestic Prince (46)
47. Arts and Letters (67)
48. Stymie (41)
49. Challedon (38)
50. Pan Zareta
51. Noor (69)
52. Busher (40)
53. Gallorette (45)
54. Coaltown (47)
55. Sword Dancer (53)
56. Riva Ridge (57)
57. Grey Lag (54)
58. Devil Diver (55)
59. Dahlia (50)
60. Zev (56)
61. Ta Wee (80)
62. Twilight Tear (59)
63. Native Diver (60)
64. Holy Bull (64)
65. Precisionist
66. Inside Information
67. Shuvee (70)
68. Twenty Grand (52)
69. Skip Away (32)
70. Sham
71. Alsab (65)
72. Lady’s Secret (76)
73. Genuine Risk (91)
74. A.P. Indy
75. Landaluce
76. Silver Charm (63)
77. Susan’s Girl (51)
78. Cicada (62)
79. Go for Wand (72)
80. Slew o’ Gold (58)
81. Bald Eagle (74)
82. Exceller (96)
83. Tim Tam
84. Top Flight (66)
85. Manila
86. Johnstown (73)
87. Lure (85)
88. Princess Rooney
89. Two Lea (77)
90. Gallant Bloom (79)
91. Miesque (82)
92. Eight Thirty (78)
93. Fort Marcy (86)
94. Hoist the Flag
95. Cougar II
96. Gamely (87)
97. Carry Back (83)
98. Ancient Title
99. Bayakoa (95)
100. Formal Gold

*Triple Crown winner

Below is my list of the Top 25 Racehorses of the 21st Century so far to have raced in North America:

1. American Pharoah*
2. Zenyatta
3. Justify*
4. Curlin
5. Arrogate
6. Shared Belief
7. California Chrome
8. Rachel Alexandra
9. Barbaro
10. Tiznow
11. Wise Dan
12. Ghostzapper
13. Point Given
14. Invasor
15. Gun Runner
16. Beholder
17. Smarty Jones
18. Azeri
19. Lava Man
20. Goldikova
21. Bernardini
22. Rags to Riches
23. Candy Ride
24. Kona Gold
25. Xtra Heat

*Triple Crown winner

BREEDERS’ CUP FIGS: THORO-GRAPH VS. BEYER

I have stated many times that I believe Beyer Speed Figures are a valuable tool for horseplayers. If I didn’t believe that, I wouldn’t list Beyers as often as I do. But I consider Thoro-Graph figures to be vastly superior to the Beyers. That’s why I do not hesitate to recommend that a serious horseplayer should put Thoro-Graph figures to use whenever possible.

The higher a Beyer figure is, the better it is. The opposite is true for Thoro-Graph figures.

Thoro-Graph takes many more factors into account than the Beyers. According to Thoro-Graph, “each number on a sheet represents a performance rating arrived at by using time of the race, beaten lengths, ground lost or saved on the turns, weight carried, and any effects wind conditions had on the time of the race.”

In terms of the Beyers, the winner of a race will never get a smaller figure than the horse who finished second, the horse who finished second will never get a smaller figure than the horse who finished third, and so on down through the order of finish.

With Thoro-Graph, a winner does not necessary get the best figure in a race. This, in my opinion, is one of the reasons that a Thoro-Graph figure reflects reality more than a Beyer. Any horseplayer knows that a winner does not necessarily always run the best race. How many times have you bet a horse who lost, yet you feel that the horse you bet actually ran the best race?

Below is the Beyer Speed Figure for the winner in each of this year’s 14 Breeders’ Cup races at Del Mar:

112 Knicks Go (Classic)
105 Yibir (Turf)
103 Marche Lorraine (Distaff)
106 Space Blues (Mile)
100 Aloha West (Sprint)
102 Loves Only You (Filly & Mare Turf)
109 Life Is Good (Dirt Mile)
107 Golden Pal (Turf Sprint)
100 Ce Ce (Filly & Mare Sprint)
87 Modern Games (Juvenile Turf)
91 Corniche (Juvenile)
79 Pizza Bianca (Juvenile Fillies Turf)
94 Echo Zulu (Juvenile Fillies)
84 Twilight Gleaming (Juvenile Turf Sprint)

Below is the Thoro-Graph figure for each of the 14 races:

NEG 3 Knicks Go (Classic)
1 1/2 Yibir (Turf)
2 Marche Lorraine (Distaff)
1 1/4 Space Blues (Mile)
0 Aloha West (Sprint)
1 1/2 Loves Only You (Filly & Mare Turf)
0 Life Is Good (Dirt Mile)
NEG 1/2 Golden Pal (Turf Sprint)
NEG 1 1/2 Ce Ce (Filly & Mare Sprint)
7 Modern Games (Juvenile Turf)
4 1/2 Corniche (Juvenile)
8 1/2 Pizza Bianca (Juvenile Fillies Turf)
4 1/4 Echo Zulu (Juvenile Fillies)
7 3/4 Twilight Gleaming (Juvenile Turf Sprint)

The winner did not receive the best Thoro-Graph figure in eight of the 14 races. Below are the horses who did not win a Breeders’ Cup race, yet received a Thoro-Graph figure better than or equal to the winner:

--Broome’s figure was a 1/2 in the Turf.

--Dunbar Road’s figure was a 1 3/4 in the Distaff, while Clairiere and Royal Flag each matched Marche Lorraine’s 2.

--Ivar’s figure was a 0 in the Mile.

--Dr. Schivel’s figure was a negative 1/2 in the Sprint.

--Lieutenant Dan’s figure was a negative 1/2 in the Turf Sprint.

--Grafton’s Street’s figure was a 6 1/2 in the Juvenile Turf.

--Pappacap’s figure was a 4 1/4 in the Juvenile.

--Vertiginous and One Timer each received a figure of a 7 in the Juvenile Turf Sprint. Kaufymaker and Averly Jane each received a 7 1/4.

Interestingly, even though Twilight Gleaming won the Juvenile Turf Sprint, Thoro-Graph has four of the vanquished getting a better figure!
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