Have you ever looked at a trainer or an owner and just
thought, “wow, what a whiner, what a baby. Just shut up and do what is best for
your horse?” Right now, I’m looking at several who are moaning and whining about
the new Derby Points system and thinking that exact quote.
Personally I like the system. It does have its flaws, not
including the Illinois Derby is one of them. I think that pretty much discrediting
two year old form and early Derby preps is another, but overall the system has
the basic bottom line I have wanted to see. That is the removal the emphasis on big money juvenile races while focusing on races run at three.
They system in a nutshell does just that. Early on the Derby
trail, and late Juvenile races do earn you points, a very little amount, but
they do earn you points to the Kentucky Derby
. The second round of preps earns
you more points, and the third and final round earns you a great deal of
points. This allows late bloomers, who may not have otherwise made the Derby, a
shot to do so. It also weeds out those who may have earned their money in
sprints or as precious juveniles and haven’t progressed.
You would think trainers would welcome this style,
especially those who have those late bloomers, but it would seem they don’t,
and they aren’t hiding their discontent. Some trainers seem to feel that with
this new system it is all of a sudden ok to push their horse, just to make the
race. I’m sorry, it’s not and that can often times ruin a horse.
The trainer of Itsmyluckyday
, the winner of the Gulfstream
Park Derby, Eddie Plesa Jr.
says “But what’s ideal for my horse might not get him into the
Derby, so I have to sort through that.”
Actually, no, Mr. Plesa, you don’t. You do what is right by
your horse. If he doesn’t get into the Derby then it wasn’t meant to be. Nobody’s
fault, maybe something was wrong, maybe the horse isn’t ready. Either way it is
your job to manage the best interests of your horse along with that of its
owners, and rushing or pushing your horse to the Derby and risking the
possibility of ruining him is not in the best interests of either.
, while he disagrees with the lack of weight the new
point system put on the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, seems to understand the
sentiment I just mentioned. Saying that he has talked to the owners and have
decided that Shanghai Bobby
, soon to be named Juvenile Champion, will have two
preps. If by some reason his charge does not accumulate enough points in his
two preps then he will be pointed to the Preakness. “Life goes on,” as Pletcher
so aptly put it.
In short, quit your moaning, quit your crying, and for god’s
sake quit you whining. It won’t get you anywhere. Changes happens, you can
either go with it and adapt or sulk and get left behind. Train your horses how
you’d normally train them and quit fussing. There are far worse things in the
sport of horse racing, this isn’t one of them.