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HRN Original Blog:
A New York State of Racing


Older Comments...

Interesting to read and hear about everyone's thoughts on how this race will play out. Personally, I think AP will win, and would be surprised if he doesn't keep that amazing form he had in the Haskell. If he does have that form, no one is going to be "closing" on AP. Only in the Derby did a horse make up real ground against him and that was Frosted. In the Haskell saying that Keen ice actually closed on AP and gained ground is purely the result of Victor stepping on the brakes. If anyone thinks I'm missing another example, definitely let me know. Looking forward to tomorrow. This is horse racing... anything can happen. No one is 'wrong' yet.
Here's how the race will play out....... AP will go out quickly to the lead and then throttle back to set slow or moderate fractions. Nobody else has the speed or willingness to challenge him early. Smart Transition will be a couple of lengths back in 2nd or 3rd place. At about the 7F point, Frosted and Texas Red will make a move in tandem from the middle/back of the field, pass a tiring Smart Transition at the head of the stretch and close to within a length of AP. VE will look back and see the challenge, tap AP, and AP will accelerate away to a 23 second final 2F and win by 5 lengths; leaving Frosted and TR to battle each other for second. Frosted will outlast TR and take 2nd by a half-length. A couple of lengths further back, a tiring Smart Transition will take 4th, barely holding off a closing Keen Ice. The others will be far back. Final time will be in the range of 2:01 to 2:02.
The final half mile of the Travers Stakes preview: Three quarters up now in 1 11 and 3, American Pharoah is still trapped at the rail , Mid Ocean is trying to keep up, and now Victor lets American Pharoah go! Around the far turn, it is American Pharoah in front . Mid Ocean is second . Joel Rosario brings out the whip on Frosted , Texas Red is in behind trying to find away behind Smart Transition , Texas Red to the outside . American Pharoah cuts the corner, Upstart down toward the inside, AND THEY'RE INTO THE STRETCH. And it's AMERICAN PHAROAH ! American Pharoah is in front by two! Frosted is second . Upstart is digging down deep for more , Mid Ocean's had enough . Into the final furlong, it is American Pharoah ! FROSTED runs at him! He's within one! And here comes KEEN ICE , HE'S FLYING WITHIN 3 and closing like a shot ! They're coming to the finish AMERICAN PHAROAH AND FROSTED take it to the end , here comes Keen Ice, here's the line , and FROSTED HAS WON THE TRAVERS ! ! ! ! ! ! Keen Ice and American Pharoah were a neck back ! And it was at least 7 or 8 back to Upstart with Mid Ocean and Smart Transition just behind him. Final time: 2:00.2
No human being is perfect. No animal is perfect. Any given day an athlete or team can be beaten. Same goes with a racehorse. Yes American Pharoah has accomplished very much, and has never been pressed to. But I can not help seeing in my mind, Texas Red nosing out American Pharoah making this the best finish in history. It will shadow the Derby win, Preakness, and Belmont for sure. Good luck to all and enjoy!
The official full race preview continues : Further back , is Frammento already 10 lengths off the lead, then King of New York to the outside of Keen Ice , and Tale of Verve is already about 20 lengths back! So down the backstretch they go, and Mid Ocean is in front , he's got American Pharoah pinned down at the rail in second . American Pharoah is going to try to get through that small opening on the rail. The pace has moderated , half up in 47 and 3. Then Smart Transition to the outside with Frosted , now that pair is within 2 1/2. Then Upstart down toward the fence , with Texas Red and Keen Ice . Frammento is in behind horses and needs somewhere to go, King of New York is still a dozen lengths behind, and Tale of Verve is way back there, he's still 5 lengths in dead last. Mid Ocean is in front and American Pharoah takes the lead! American Pharoah is in front as he approaches the half mile pole! Stay tuned for the dramatic final half mile of the Travers ! !!
Here it is. The official race preview of the 2015 Travers Stakes . Upstart will participate in this race preview . Enjoy !!!! They're off in the Travers Stakes ! American Pharoah goes straight to the lead and Upstart had to check hard at the start . American Pharoah is in front . Here comes Mid Ocean on the outside to challenge him and these 2, the triple crown winner and the maiden head for the clubhouse turn . Smart Transition away 4 off the front . Then the trio of Upstart , Texas Red between horses and Frosted to the outside . They got a quarter in 23 flat, it's fast, and like the derby American Pharoah will let Mid Ocean take over. Stay tuned for more .
OK, let me come out for Tale of Verve to squeeeeeze in past TR and ruin everybody's Super... e.g. my SF (boxed and bowed), is Frosted, AP, KI, Tale of Verve!
QUOTE: "If your (shouldn't this be the more adult : you're) betting the race, your best play is the superfecta, as the pools will be huge!" In reality when 98.997% of the betting public hooks up the big favorite with the rest of the field, IT STILL WILL PAY NEXT TO NOTHING no matter the SIZE of said pool. Only way to make money here is if the favorite runs third, OR oddly, OUT altogether. Unless he breaks down or is pulled up, that is not likely to happen.
  • Anthony Lopez via Disqus · Best thing to bet on Travers day would be the all stakes pick-4's! Single Pharoah and hope for a longshot in the others!!! · 2 days ago
  • cugel the clever · In a race like this, the best saver bet is to put a $1 or $2 exacta box on the next two likeliest horses (IMHO Texas Red and Frosted). · 3 hours ago
nah its a cake walk they have zero chance to beat this guy! he looks better then ever and his last work sealed the deal.
When one understands the practical application of the numbers from certainty (1) to impossible (0), it is inherent to understand that these extremes are only terminal boundaries, NOT practical points of the probability spectrum.....No horse in any race EVER had zero chance to do anything.
Swiss Affair and Later My Love
The great thing about horse racing is that all arguments are settled at the cash window.
Congratulations on 8 in a row with American Pharoah. Saratoga might be his biggest challenge to date, and if not Beholder is right around the corner. Lets hook these two up and make some extraordinary horses when the racing is over in October!!! ( I'll call SHOTGUN...on first colt) LOL.
Donn Handicap winner Constitution works 5 Furlongs in 1.00.58, after the work, Todd Pletcher tells DRF's David Grening that Constitution will most likely return in the Lukas Classic at Chruchill Downs in mid September, according to DRF
American Pharoah / Frosted / Texas Red / Keen Ice / st8 saver, Frosted over Texas Red exacta with a 3/1 ratio yes I always have a saver except when it's a throwaway bet. Throwaway bet= either it wins or loses... example, Gangster $20.00 win/
Todd is the very best at sending horses into early retirement
In an article that was released on Thursday on the AtTheRaces.com web-site, it appears that trainer David Elsworth and owner Jeff Smith have decided to forgo running Juddmonte International winner Arabian Queen in the G1 Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown on September 12th in favor of running a day later on September 13th in the G1 Prix Vermeille at Longchamp against the likes of Treve, Dolniya, & Sea Calisi among other top fillies & mares.
Possibly when they have a horse of the caliber of American Pharoah ( multi dimensional freak of this century) running in a race with all closers, they should allocate some of the purse money to the leaders at all points of call. It should entice some early speed horses. Otherwise I really don't see the difference in American Pharoah's competition, and that faced by Spectacular Bid 25 years ago in this same race.
  • amino998 · Or use a mechanical rabbit loaded with carrots & peppermints if the imaginary rabbit just won't do · 1 day ago
American Pharoah – this horse looks unbeatable, watch out for the graveyard of champions, the knocks are that he’s never raced here, and Baffert has bad luck at Saratoga. Frosted – always seems to come up second, maybe can turn it around in this race, working out well, hot jockey / trainer combo, might be the best bet to beat Pharoah. Texas Red – winner of the Jim Dandy, hasn’t gone this distance, we will see what Desormeaux can do against Pharoah. Just Missed – Keen Ice, second in Haskell; Tale of Verve, Gary Stevens can find a way.
Okay, can anyone please let me know if Upstart will scratch ? ? I thought he would have by now, but if he hasn't by now, he might run. But he's in the worst post possible . He'll have to get a good jump or miss the break because American Pharoah and Mid Ocean are going to get out fast . I think I'll put him in my full race preview .

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 Meet Matt Shifman 

Matt Shifman has been on the Horse Racing Nation staff since 2011 and currently serves as Assistant Editor. Matt covers Aqueduct, Belmont Park, Monmouth Park, and Saratoga in his two HRN blogs Racing at the Jersey Shore and New York State of Racing.


Matt’s articles and tweets frequently appear in the America’s Best Racing weekly Notebook. In 2012 he became a voter in the NTRA weekly polls for the Top Thoroughbred and Top Three-Year-Old.


The best way to get to know Matt is to check out some of his favorite articles from the past couple years.


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