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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Philly Longshots and Genuine Risk

Apparently, it was “Long Shot Day” at Philly Park today. Unfortunately, I missed that memo, and didn’t get in on the action. In the third race, jockey Angel Rodriguez brought home Rymar who paid $135.60 for the win; considering Rymar is trained by Patricia Farro, I’m surprised he went off as such a long shot, although his pedigree is extremely modest (that’s being nice) and his morning line odds were 20 to 1. Believe it or not, he was not the longest shot in the field, though. That honor went to General Principle with Joanne McDaid up, who went off at 123 to 1…and finished next to last (well, really last since Henry’s Appeal was eased up in the stretch). Jorge Duarte Jr. rode Longrunonbroadway ($16.60) to place; the 3-5 $2 exacta paid $1,386.20, and 3-5-2 $2 trifecta paid $9,749.80.

In the fourth race it was Joe Hampshire’s turn, with a three-year-old maiden claimer out of Storm Boot named Out of Ireland paying $136.80 for the win, beating the even money favorite Show Respect by ¾ length; the 6-1 $2 exacta paid $582.60, and the 6-1-9 $2 tri paid $7,827.40.

That’s not it, as nearly every race saw long shots in the money, with huge payouts: for example, in race six, the 1-7 $2 exacta paid $499.60, and the 1-7-4 $2 trifecta paid $3,076.00! Oh, why, oh why can’t I hit these days at the track?

On another matter, I was surprised, and pleased, to recently learn that Hall of Fame trainer LeRoy Jolley has been getting much better horses to train at Gulfstream Park this meet, albeit on a much more modest scale than, say, Todd Pletcher. He’s training horses for Bridle Path Stables, including Laser, a three-year-old son of Awesome Again who finished mid-pack in a $40K 1-1/16 mile allowance race on turf yesterday. Still, Jolley holds a special place in my memory, as the trainer of Foolish Pleasure, his half-brother Honest Pleasure, and champion filly Genuine Risk.

Speaking of which…only the second filly to win the Kentucky Derby (and place in both the Preakness and Belmont stakes), Genuine Risk turns 30 this year, the oldest living Kentucky Derby winner. After her racing career ended, she was twice bred to Secretariat, but both tries were unsuccessful (first was stillborn colt, second time nothing). Over nearly two decades, she only produced two living colts, both of whom never raced, and one was eventually gelded (Count Our Blessing, out of Chief Honcho, in 1996). The other Genuine Reward (1993) out of Rahy, stood at stud, but his progeny were nothing special on the track, unfortunately. Sad that such a special filly had such a difficult time producing, but aren’t we glad we had her! Happy Birthday, girl!

To the left is a photo of Genuine Risk frolicking with her first born, Genuine Reward. Relive her Derby victory here.