Secretariat

Suburban Rekindles Memories of Race’s History and Influence

The rich Belmont Derby and Oaks may have overshadowed the Suburban Stakes run earlier on the card, but this year’s renewal and its first three finishers provided a look back at the names that once made this one of the sport’s most important races. ~ Steve Haskin

Suburban Rekindles Memories of Race’s History and Influence

By Steve Haskin

From left to right, Dynamic One in green silks, First Captain, and Untreated

 

For some reason I have a tendency over the years to peak too early when it comes to Todd Pletcher ‘s horses. Unfortunately, they have had a tendency to peak late. The two most recent cases were when I had the audacity to rank Vino Rosso as my No. 1 ranked Derby horse over Justify. Of course, we didn’t see his best until the following fall when he captured the Breeders’ Cup Classic.

Last year, I picked Dynamic One as my very early Derby sleeper following a fourth-place finish in a maiden race on January 23 based on a number of observations and then, despite having never won a stakes, I ranked him No. 4 going into the Derby and made him my main win bet. The story of Dynamic One, however, is not that he, like Vino Rosso, didn’t find himself until he was 4, it is that he won his first graded stakes in the historic Suburban, a race he was destined to win from the time he was born.

It seems deep in my psyche I am always looking for Suburban winners early on, having been weaned, even before my actual emergence into Thoroughbred racing, on Suburban winners such as Dr. Fager, Buckpasser, Kelso, Bold Ruler, Nashua, Sword Dancer, Tom Fool, and Traffic Judge, all great stars of the 1950s and ‘60s. This was when the Suburban was a major sign of summer, falling on the Fourth of the July, and the first big distance race for older horses in New York, sandwiched by the Met Mile on Memorial Day and the Brooklyn Handicap in mid-to-late-July, the three races comprising the prestigious Handicap Triple Crown.

Even though the Handicap Triple Crown no longer exists, the Suburban has been relegated to Grade 2 status, and the race is now run as a stakes in a world devoid of handicaps, watching the furious stretch battle on Saturday between Dynamic One, First Captain, and Untreated I couldn’t help but harken back to those golden years of Thoroughbred racing and what an important race the Suburban Handicap once was.

You see, if you look at the pedigrees of all three horses, you will find the names of every one of the Suburban winners mentioned above and a lot more.

Dynamic One’s female family is steeped in history and is a Who’s Who of great stars bred and raced by Ogden Phipps and his mother Mrs. Henry Carnegie Phipps, who raced under the name Wheatley Stable. In his pedigree are the names Personal Ensign, Numbered Account, My Flag, Storm Flag Flying, Private Account, Relaxing, and the Blue Hen producer Intriguing. To demonstrate the amazing continuity of this family, Personal Ensign, her daughter My Flag, and My Flag’s daughter Storm Flag Flying all won Breeders’ Cup races.

But also in Dynamic One’s pedigree is Suburban Handicap winner Buckpasser, whose sire Tom Fool, bred by Greentree Stud, and dam, the Phipps-bred Busanda, both won the Suburban as well. Tom Fool can also be found in Dynamic One’s male family. Dynamic One’s third dam, My Flag, is by Suburban winner Easy Goer and his fourth dam, Personal Ensign, is by Private Account, a grandson of Suburban winner Sword Dancer. The top line of Dynamic One’s female family traces to Suburban winner Nashua, and in both his male and female family you can find Suburban winner Bold Ruler.

So, in Dynamic One’s female family alone are seven individual winners of the Suburban Handicap. Dynamic One has always exhibited a quick turn of foot, but he has also had a tendency to relax once on the lead, which cost him last year’s Wood Memorial. But in Saturday’s Suburban, once he got his head in front it was as if all those great past winners refused to let him blow this one and allow a gutsy First Captain to come back and beat him.

As for First Captain, his sire Curlin also traces to Suburban winner Nashua and his dam America traces to Suburban winner Traffic Judge, and he also has Suburban winners Buckpasser, Tom Fool, Busanda, and Bold Ruler in his female family. Stretching it a little farther, his tail-female family traces to Fairy Bridge, a granddaughter of Forli, who sired Suburban winner Forego.

And finally, we have to mention third-place finisher Untreated, whose dam is from the great sire line of Fappiano, a grandson of Dr. Fager, who defeated his arch rival Damascus in a memorable record-equaling running of the 1968 Suburban. Also, Untreated’s paternal great-grandsire Indian Charlie is by In Excess, whose time of 1:58 1/5 shattered the stakes record in the 1991 Suburban. He, like Dynamic One and First Captain, also traces to Suburban winners Buckpasser, Tom Fool, and Busanda.

So you can see just what an important race the Suburban Handicap was and the influence it has had on today’s Thoroughbred, especially the three horses who provided such a memorable running of this year’s event, in which they fought it out for the final quarter of a mile, separated at the finish by a nose and three-quarters of a length.

It is races like this that we need to feature our older horses in an era where our stars are retired prematurely and never given the opportunity to develop and mature and show just how good, or great, they really could have been.

Dynamic One, First Captain, and Untreated are probably not going to be remembered as great horses, but horses like them are desperately needed not only to keep their names and the older horse division alive, but to keep alive an era long gone, in which races like the Suburban Handicap drew 50,000 to 60,000 fans to the track to watch the legends of the sport compete.

The Suburban is no longer a handicap, the Brooklyn is now a mile and a half invitational stakes that rarely draws a Grade 1 horse, and the Met Mile has been moved from being the Memorial Day feature to one of a number of stakes run on Belmont Stakes day. And of course the Handicap Triple Crown is now but a memory to old timers and means very little to the younger generation.

But every once in a while we get a good old fashioned slugfest with horses giving their all like we saw on Saturday. And when a memorable battle like that is accompanied by the name Suburban and we learn of the influence the race has on the participants, for a short while all is right with the world.

 

Photos courtesy of Dom Napolitano and Chelsea Durand, Coglianese Photos


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44 Responses to “Suburban Rekindles Memories of Race’s History and Influence”

  1. TommyMc says:

    Reinvestment Risk was never a factor yesterday at very low odds and as a “single” on many Pick-6 tickets. Very unusual for a Chad Brown horse who usually sends them out “ready to rumble”. Don’t shed any tears for Chad Brown though. I think that he won 4 other races on the card which were ridden by 3 different jockeys.
    I think the Saratoga Pick-6 paid something like $299,000 for a very difficult sequence. My little $48 ticket didn’t stand a chance.
    Flavien Prat won his first race of the meet at Saratoga yesterday. He’s off to a slow start. I hope he sticks it out. It takes time to build up relationships with trainers at a new location. He’s made headway into the Chad Brown and Todd Pletcher barns. But, he needs to crack into lower profile barns like Rudy Rodriguez, Danny Gargan, Rob Atras, Tom Morley, Christophe Clement, and Charlton Baker.
    One of my favorite New York trainers is Charlie Baker. He’s very dependable on dirt. But, hasn’t yet figured out turf which isn’t surprising for a former Finger Lakes trainer. Finger Lakes is like Los Alamitos and Oaklawn: no turf racing allowed. Mainly, because none of the 3 have a turf course.
    I see Tom Morley as an up and coming NY trainer. I can’t help but notice how many horses that other trainers claim off of him.

  2. Matthew W says:

    Mine That Bird hammer it up for the Oklahoma parade, today….announcer made a bigger deal about the movie “50 to 1″….thanks his Derby victory…..it WAS a good movie….my favorite scene is where trainer is getting on the elevator, and BobB is speaking, about the diverse field, when he mentions a New Mexico bred the place erupts in laughter!..

  3. Lynda King says:

    Hello Steve and all. Hope everyone’s summer is going great. Very sad about Kitten’s Joy. Condolences to Mr. Ramsey. Has not been long ago that Mrs. Ramsey passed away.
    Anyway, just dropping by to let everyone know that if the have the STARZ Channel, the movie “Jockey” is now available to stream. Have not watched it yet, plan to this evening or Sunday evening.

    • Davids says:

      Yes Lynda, sad news about Kitten’s Joy. Magical Lagoon was strong in the Irish Oaks but Emily Upjohn in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes next Saturday should be a cracker. Don’t miss it!!

      • Lynda King says:

        Hi Davids, yes I saw that EU was out of the race (travel arrangements?) but pointed to the stakes race you mention. Best of luck to her. Kind of been out of the loop on horse racing the past few weeks.

        The heat here has been unbearable so been having to pace myself when taking care of the horses and goats. We finally did get some good rains over a week and a half that for the moment has alleviated our near drought conditions.

        In the evening I have been watching movies or a PBS series. Just about finished with the PBS Masterpiece series (2021) “Around the World in 80 Days”. It is a somewhat different version than the movie from years ago and a different take on the book. The cast is mostly British. Possibly a second series based on “20,000 Leagues Under The Sea”.

        • Davids says:

          Fingers crossed so you get some more rain. We’re having the coldest winter since 1985 here but not that much rain which is a real worry for the future. ‘They’ are predicting a La Niña summer here which is more rain, third year in a row should that occur.

          It’s going to be over 104f in England next Monday and Tuesday which is unheralded. A scorcher in England is 85f. Lol. I know it’s maudlin to say or think but the future doesn’t look bright. Covid is again out of control here, I’m having another booster this Tuesday. Racing is a wonderful escape from reality.

          I saw “Hamilton” for the third time here in Melbourne last Friday. Most of the major cast were on leave but the show was just as thrilling, although a little nervy in the first half. I’m looking forward to all the 2 year old races at Saratoga, hope

          • Davids says:

            Springs eternal. A fluffy friend pushed return, early.

          • Lynda King says:

            The heat and humidity here in Georgia is not that unusual for the month of July and August nor are drought type conditions in the summer. The thing that was different here this year is that the heat wave settled in during mid June. Our summers here have actually been cooler than average the past 5 years or so.

            The temperatures for England does indeed sound extreme. Will that cause delays or cancellations for horse racing? Both horse and harness racing were cancelled in New York a few weeks ago due to the heat. Have a friend who has part ownership in a harness horse and she was talking about the races being cancelled.

            The two new Covid variants and monkey pox cases are on the rise here. I have gone back to wearing my mask in public and using hand sanitizer and trying to avoid crowds. There was a movie I wanted to go see this weekend at our little hometown theater but just did not want to risk contact with someone. Have had the one booster for Covid and am eligible for the second which I plan to get in the next few days.

            Looking forward to the upcoming races at Saratoga. In Italian (Dubawi out of Florentina) won the Diana Stakes today. My favorite to win was Bleecker Street (Quality Road out of Lemon Liquor) came in third. Fadethenoise (Mendelssohn) won on turf today by 6 lengths. First winner for Mendy out of his first crop to race.

            Will probably spend some time this evening watching race replays.

            Stay warm and stay safe!

            • Davids says:

              Monday’s meets at Beverley and Windsor have been cancelled as have Tuesday’s fixtures at Chelmsford City, Southwell, and Wolverhampton.

              I’ve never stopped wearing a mask, the University is on skeleton staff basically as everyone works from home with zoom when necessary. At live theatre/cinema wearing a mask does inhibit your full enjoyment of the experience but that’s life these days.

              Peter Brant is having great success in New York and Europe since he came back to racing. He has a wonderful eye in buying runners. Good luck to him, his success is enjoyed by everyone, well nearly everyone. Ha ha

          • Lynda King says:

            Davids…PS, totally agree that horse racing is a great diversion from what is going on as are movies and reading books.

            Our food prices are soaring and inflation is going up every month. We have now had three months of negative GDP which is one of the indicators that we are headed into a recession.

            I feel so for Seniors who have nothing but Social Security and the working poor and lower middle income families. Our animal shelters are full because people are turning their dogs in because they cannot afford to feed them and I have been seeing a lot of stray dogs lately as well. The Equine rescues in my area are also full. I wish I could take in another rescue or foster but I am concerned as it is about the availability and price for hay this winter for my little herd.

            • Davids says:

              That is so true, Lynda. It’s wrong that as people age their lives are becoming less secure while the “Tech Barons” swallow up the wealth of a nation. I donate to the cat and dog shelters, seeing poor defenseless animals being dumped is so cruel. As you say, you can’t save the world but at least you can try.

        • Ms Blacktype says:

          So sorry about the heat where you are, Lynda. Everyone thinks people in the south live in AC all the time, but not people who farm and care for animals! As a North Carolina girl, I feel very fortunate that I live in the NY Catskills now. This has been one of the most beautiful summers I’ve ever experienced here. (That said, we spent hours today stacking most of 3 cords of wood — at least it was comfortable enough to do that!)

          Sad to hear about the passing of Kitten’s Joy. Such a powerful turf influence for so many years. I too have been off the racing radar for a little bit, but I did manage to tape and watch the Diana, the stakes-quality allowance that preceded it, and the Sanford, which was a wonderful race. So happy it was won by a 2YO with real Triple Crown potential, Mo Strike. I’ve already started by Triple Crown trail list. Keeps me out of trouble!

          • Lynda King says:

            Hi Ms Blacktype.
            Have a friend who lives close to Saratoga. The summer for her has been nice as well. Good to hear that the weather has been nice for you this year. Someday, if I live long enough I am going to take the train from Toccoa, Georgia to Saratoga. It is such a lovely little town.

            Did not know you were from North Carolina. What area if I might ask? Have you ever heard of the Peaks of Otter in Virginia?

            Way too hot here to stack firewood LOL. But I do need to start thinking about getting it together. I have about a cord and half left from last year (red oak) that is fully cured now.

            Just brought in some green apples off my little tree. Think I will cook some baked apples tomorrow.

          • Lynda King says:

            Guess I need to be specific…Peaks of Otter in Virginia.

  4. Davids says:

    All eyes will be on the Emerald Isle this Saturday, at the Curragh more specifically, when Emily Upjohn launches her bid to recapture lost glory in the Irish Oaks. Let’s hope she gets a better trip this time round, Frankie. A significant win will see EU back on top as the one to beat in the Arc, come October 3. Allez, Emily Upjohn!!

    • Davids says:

      With Emily Upjohn out of the Irish Oaks and instead heading to the stiffer King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot next Saturday, Jessie Harrington’s Magical Lagoon might clock-up another Classic win for the incomparable, Galileo.

  5. Matthew W says:

    THAT’S why you should run them! Precisionist ran 46 times, 20 win…10 place…4 show and TWELVE out of the money, and NOBODY that saw him run thought he wasn’t all that! Race them, a poor performance does not tarnish their greatness, Secretariat was floundering, in the Whitney, near the wire….he remains Horse Racing’s Gold Standard

  6. richard fibbio says:

    One of the best races i ever saw was the 1980 Suburban
    Winter’s Tale, State Dinner and Czaravich all 3 GR. 1 winners going at it from the half mile pole to the finish
    At the finish it was Winter’s Tale by a head, State Dinner second by a head with Czaravich third, a great race to watch

    Three year later Winter’s Tale would come back and win the Suburban again as a 7-year-old for Rokeby, back in the day when winning the Suburban meant something.

    • SJ says:

      Good to see Czaravich mentioned, a forgotten horse. Billy Turner exhibited his usual excellent horsemanship keeping the headstrong (being kind here) Czaravich on track. His disposition often compromised his intrinsic talent.

  7. Nelson Maan says:

    The once coveted and famous New York Handicap Triple Crown (NYHTC) tacitly came apart since 2014 when the Metropolitan and the Brooklyn were slated the same day. Regardless, one can only be captivated by the rich history of that series especially before 1997.

    The NYHTC was even harder than the traditional Triple Crown series for the 3-year-olds. This is evidenced by the fact that only four horses were able to complete it in the last 110 years. The stellar names are Whisk Broom II in 1913, Tom Fool in 1953, Kelso in 1961 and Fit to Fight in 1984. Fit to Fight was the only HTC champion who won the Brooklyn at 12 furlongs.
    Achieving the HTC is more remarkable because a top old horse had many chances and still the list of crowned horses is rather limited.

    A fun fact is that 41 horses who won at least one of the NYHTC legs are now in the Hall of Fame. They accrued 75 wins within the Handicap Triple Crown series. The last ones were Ghostzapper (Metropolitan) and Invasor (Suburban). Many other HoF horses like Regret, Affectionately, Hill Prince, Alydar and Housebuster ran well but could not win any of the three legs in their times.

    Many legendary horses could not complete the Handicap Triple Crown in one given year.

    In 1967 Buckpasser won the Metropolitan and the Suburban but Handsome Boy took full advantage of a 20 pounds weight allowance to defeat him by 8 lengths in the Brooklyn.

    The superstar Forego sought the NYHTC in 1974, 1975, 1976 and 1977. He was close but could not complete the three legs in one year. His balance was 2 wins, a second and a third in the Metropolitan, 3 wins and a second in the Brooklyn, and a win, two seconds and a third in the Suburban. Forego’s last race was the 1978 Suburban (finishing a painful 5th ) but that year he had to bypass the Metropolitan and was retired before the Brooklyn. The mighty Forego was closest in 1976 when losing by a nose in the Suburban to Foolish Pleasure halted his HTC act. It was the only time the Suburban was at 9.5 furlongs instead of at its usual 10 furlongs.

    It is difficult to explain why the Suburban and Brooklyn Stakes lost appeal and intrinsic quality but some factors could be that the best older horses are somewhat spent in the Dubai World Cup, the best 3-year-olds (with 2 or 3 Grade 1 tallies) are retired before 4 and that there are other richer (or at easier distances) Stakes outside New York during summer.

    As Steve stated, Dynamic One, First Captain, Untreated and Fearless may not be great horses but they will hopefully have a shot at climbing the ranks if they can face and defeat the likes of Flightline, Life is Good, Olympiad, and even Speaker’s Corner in any of the upcoming top Stakes. The 3-year-old crop seems to be brimming with quality as well…

    Hopefully the Whitney Stakes, the Jockey Club Gold Cup, the Woodward, the Pacific Classic and the climactic BCC become avenues for greatness to some of the brilliant horses we are fortunate to enjoy this year.

  8. Matthew W says:

    Talking throwbacks, we were on another blog, talking about Precisionist, and I recalled the Del Mar Invitational, around 1984, about 10 furlongs….my brother was going and I sent $30 to put on a three year old’s nose, and that three year old was Precisionist…..he led the field into the homestretch, by 10 lengths, and he won by just more than a length, and my $30 turned into around $350….he was 10-1……the next year they entered Pre in the BCup Sprint, and he paid $13, and ran the highest Beyer in the Cup’s history…..he didn’t always fire that big shot but if you were lucky enough to see Precisionist when he did—you saw greatness.

    • Matthew W says:

      He won that BCup Sprint off of a layoff ..

    • Davids says:

      Still, one of the most amazing wins to watch is Unbridled running down Housebuster in the 1991 Deputy Minister Handicap at 7f. It’s on YouTube, search “1991 Deputy Minister Handicap”

      • Matthew W says:

        Loved Unbridled, his Derby win was one of the top five since 1971, in my opinion! Saw Best Pal and Twilight Agenda beat him in the inaugural Pacific Classic, Unbridled was a lot like Best Pal they both did nor always run their best race but when they did they were pretty solid!

  9. David Cade says:

    Steve – Right on! Yes, last Saturday’s Suburban was a throwback race, and it’s only fitting that the two main contenders both have throwback pedigrees! Hopefully we’ll see more of them! Dave

  10. Ms Blacktype says:

    Nice piece, Steve, and more evidence that you always have an eye for a horse that will win a major stakes at a mile and a quarter. Like so many other readers, I miss the days when the handicap triple crown was a big deal. Both the Suburban and Brooklyn were the biggest winter book races in the early days of racing in the 1880s and 1890s.

    In a slightly off-topic aside, one notorious gambler of the time, Johnny Campbell, made a huge killing in the 1890 Brooklyn with a horse named Castaway II. The newspapers at the time estimated his winnings at close to $200K, worth nearly $6 million today, through bets placed both in the ring at the track and betting pools around the country. He tried but couldn’t pull off the same trick with a horse named Cassius in the Suburban, running into the great Salvator, a horse as famous as Man o’ War at the time. (Happy to send you an excerpt from one of the few finished chapters of my book if I haven’t bored you to death with this!)

    I’m willing to bet none of those horses appear in the bloodlines of recent Suburban and Brooklyn winners, even way back. Salvator was a failure at stud, Castaway sired no foals, and Cassius only 5. Breeding wasn’t the end-all that it is today.

  11. Derek Manthey says:

    Steve another great read. I truly believe the sport has diminished itself with the demise of handicap racing. The greats separated themselves by running in the handicaps whether they won or in defeat. Owners were true sportsmen then. They were willing to take the chance at giving the competition 10 or 20 pounds. Dr. Fager probably could and would carry a cement bag. One great example is the Fall High Weight, which has turned into to the Fall Welter Weight. We lost something special and the way trainers and owners are these days we’ll never get it back. Younger fans don’t know what they’re missing!

  12. Deacon says:

    Thank you Steve for writing this blog. I also remember when the Suburban was a race we all waited to see. As much as I love these walks down memory lane it also saddens me because we will never see again horses like a few of the greats you mentioned.
    To mention a few more Suburban winners like Mineshaft, Lemon Drop Kid, Away, Easy Goer, Foolish Pleasure, Forego, & Key to the Mint.
    Thank you once again for stirring my memory.
    Dynamic One is a nice horse perhaps he has come into his own…

  13. Davids says:

    Steve, the best way to revive the Suburban Handicap and Brooklyn Invitational is crown them as Breeders’ Cup “Win and Your In” Challenge Series races. All the old great races have become ‘handmaidens’ to the Breeders’ Cup juggernaut which I don’t think was the initial intention.

    As much as the Breeders’ Cup race days are exciting they have usurped the prestige that many races once had. Flightline might be the most exciting US racehorse this century but 3 or 4 races a year leaves a huge vacuum to fill for racing fans. It’s the same with a host of Grade 1 races being slotted together on one day spectaculars, they leave a majority of race days devoid of excitement.

    Nothing is going to draw crowds back to the racetracks on a regular basis but a continuous spread of top class races makes for a growing interest in racing, if only on the internet. Surely, the Suburban Handicap and Brooklyn Invitation can get the nod as a ‘win and your in’ status so that they will improve the field of these once prestigious races and draw more fans to the sport.

    Thanks, Steve. Keep the good o’l times rolling.

  14. Jiffy says:

    I remember those horses and races very well. They were indeed special, and I still think about them on Memorial Day and the Fourth of July. Is there any reason why the Triple Crown for older horses was eliminated? I understand that handicaps are now out of style, but the Metropolitan, Suburban, and Brooklyn could still be run as a Triple Crown the way they used to be but without handicaps. The concept was good for racing, and I miss it.

  15. Matthew W says:

    Jason Servis must be getting nervous…..

  16. TommyMc says:

    We had another “Bayern-like moment” on Saturday in Shelbyville, Indiana at the start of the Indiana Derby. Morning Line favorite Rattle N Roll, who I believe went off as the actual second favorite, was completely wiped out right at the start of the race by an incident caused by the eventual winner. They had an inquiry, but, like Bayern in The Breeders Cup Classic, they let the result stand. I’m OK with it as long as they are consistent with these decisions. But, my point is that after watching the stretch run of the Indiana Derby, I think that Rattle N Roll would have “mowed them down” to win easily if he was not knocked out of the race at the start.

    • TommyMc says:

      This business of not DQing horses for “incidents/fouls” at the starts of races could lead to big trouble. A foul is a foul no matter what point in the race that it occurs.

  17. TommyMc says:

    I want to make a complaint about the FOX coverage on Saturday. No coverage on TVG. Only on FS2. Well, I was having a bad day going 0 for 6 before the 7th race Belmont Oaks. All of a sudden down here in Florida, the horseracing gets bumped off FS2 by the start of a Cincinnati Reds baseball game because a truck race on FS1 had run over. Right before one of the biggest races of the day. By the time that I figured out how to watch the race on the FOX Sports App and downloaded it onto my phone, the race was already “off”. I tuned in just in time to see McCullick and the Klaravich Stable colors make his move in the stretch to win the Belmont Oaks for my only winner of the day at Belmont. Too bad that I wasn’t able to enjoy it. Only seeing the stretch run on the very small screen of my cell-phone. Well, the truck race on FS1 finally ended and the baseball game went back to FS1 and horseracing returned to FS2. Horseracing fans always get treated badly. Here’s what they should have done: show the last laps of the truck race and the baseball game on “split-screen” on FS1. Where they belonged.

    • Davids says:

      Watch “America’s Day at the Races” on YouTube. They have all the NYRA races and often Churchill Downs as well as some other major races around the country.

    • Davids says:

      Use “Saratoga Live” on YouTube now for Saratoga races. They switch backwards and forwards.

  18. TommyMc says:

    I have mixed feelings about Saturday’s Suburban. It’s sad that they could only attract five horses to run for the $400,000 purse. Two of those runners didn’t have much of a chance IMO. Untreated only had a chance because of his pace advantage IMO. After doing a “deep-dive” into Untreated’s form, I saw it as a 2-horse race between Dynamic One and First Captain. But, we saw a very exciting stretch run by 3 horses and Untreated really surprised me by hanging in there to the finish. I think that First Captain might have been slightly compromised by being in between horses. When they meet again, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if First Captain turns the tables on Dynamic One. Those 2 horses seem very close in talent to me. There’s no denying that Dynamic One is much improved this year.

  19. Matthew W says:

    Steve you did good with Vino Rosso, but you outdid yourself with Dynamic One! Stewards took away Vino’s JC Gold, he battled the entire stretch and held sway, and they took it away for a brush, with 1/8 left! I saw him in the walking ring before the Classic, and immediately changed my pick to Vino! He looked that good! By the way…..there’s a lanky horse out here named Hopper, and he is the real deal! His two wins he is 100 yards in front, on the gallop out…..