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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Why Throwing in the (Turf) Towel is So Predictable

Let’s see. Curlin had exactly one workout on turf, and not even at Belmont. He finished second in a G1 race on turf to a former BC turf champion, with another BC turf champion behind him.

Gee, I’d consider that a pretty damn good effort. What did people expect? That he would win on a surface that he has never run on before, and had only worked out on once previously?

How American to expect it all to come so easily! Guess hard work doesn’t count for much anymore in our society of instant gratification.

Don’t keep training him on turf. Don’t actual T-R-A-I-N him. He can do it miraculously, innately on his own because he is a super horse, you know. Yep, let’s just go back to dirt. Doesn’t matter there’s no worthy challengers there—especially that broken-spirit 3-year-old Big Brown.

How smug are those who say, “Curlin can’t run on grass, so stick to dirt.”

How safe. How boring.

Just pack up your balls (literally) and take them home.

How predictable.


G. C. said...

I completely agree with your point view and like that you sprinkled in some attitude. He ran good and will improve second time over the surface like he always does.

John said...

Well. . .

It's too early for towel throwing but it seems obvious to me that he doesn't have his typical "kick" on the turf. He had nothing at the end and barely outran Better Talk Now who is way past his prime.

Just because he's a sensation on the dirt doesn't mean he's a sensation on the turf. He's a very good horse, not a great one.

This makes you really appreciate the accomplishments of Dahlia or All Along.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you too + points for the rant!

I'd, as you point out, TRAIN him a bit more on the turf, and give him another turf race here and I'd even suspend judgment on him not having his dirt kick. He definitely didn't have it yesterday but look at how much learned between the Derby and the Preakness.

I couldn't believe it this morning when I looked at my poll and "stick to dirt" is winning! That's ridiculous and I didn't even think anyone would vote for it! It's not like he came in a lackluster 5th!

Anonymous said...

I too was flabbergasted when the talking heads were downplaying Curlin's performance. Gimminee Christmas he came in second to a very good Turf Horse, hopefully the connections let him go to Europe, of course training first would be a novel idea---r

Anonymous said...

Curlin's performance was quite nice, I thought. He has always done things better the second time around, right?
People LOVE to knock things, I suppose.

Anonymous said...

I though Curlin ran an excellent race, especially given the pace and the lengths he had to make up going into the stretch. There's no disgrace in finishing second between two BC Turf winners and I hope they give him a couple more turf works and maybe another go ...

Sean said...

he just doesn't travel as well over the surface, even with the super firm going. you see that a lot with horses that strike the ground with serious force, as he does. maybe if had a year to train and mature while on european turf through his 5yo season it could be a different story, but that's just not in the cards. imagine they'll map out a way to the classic (and the very different challenges posed by that one...)