• Champion Sprinter Work All Week has been retired due to a fracture.Posted 14 hours ago
  • Harmonize comes widest of all to win the Jessamine Stakes.Posted 1 day ago
  • Got Lucky gets there on the wire in the Grade 1 Spinster at Keeneland.Posted 4 days ago
  • Airoforce kicks away in the Dixiana Bourbon Stakes for hot trainer Mark Casse.Posted 4 days ago
  • Ben's Duchess takes advantage of a speed duel to win the L.A. Woman.Posted 4 days ago
  • Inheritance, a $1.9 million 2yo in training purchase, broke her maiden by 13 today at Belmont.Posted 4 days ago
  • Golden Horn wins the Arc ... Treve runs well, but settles for fourth.Posted 4 days ago
  • Wild Dude earns a Breeders' Cup berth with a Santa Anita Sprint win.Posted 5 days ago
  • Grand Arch just holds off a flying The Pizza Man to win the Shadwell Turf Mile.Posted 5 days ago
  • He repeats -- It's all Tonalist in a sloppy Jockey Club Gold Cup.Posted 5 days ago

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Toasting with Andrew Champagne


Older Comments...

Homebred debuts Saturday in Keeneland's 7th
Wolf King.... http://offtrackthoroughbreds.com/2015/10/09/parx-enforces-zero-tolerance-policy-on-slaughter/
I can't believe Liam's Map is out! Such a disappointment and a huge hit to what was a dream championship field. Still a great field even for the Breeders Cup . 1ST - TONALIST ! !! 2nd - Honor Code 3rd - Keen Ice 4th - Frosted 5th - American Pharoah 6th- Effinex 7th - Gleneagles 8th - Beholder 9th - Wicked Strong .
111 Beyer for Smooth Roller in Awesome Again
AP is the best horse in the world, and Keen Ice may be second best.......Beholder will be in over her head, and may opt for the Distaff when push comes to shove. As far as Honor Code goes, no way he can close from way back against this field.....not gonna happen, and you know how I feel about Wicked strong, just an average horse, my friend.
She Scares You :)
After the deflection of Liam's Map: I will have to pick American Pharoah in this race, but my long shot would be Honor Code or Keen Ice. Although I do think Beholder is good enough, and is coming into the Classic fully loaded- I don't think any horse in the race can handle The beast- UNLESS someone pushes him to suicidal fractions. I don't see Frosted playing that role again, and Beholder's connections would not dare do that either. Pharoah will either run a Haskell type performance- sitting just off Beholder or whoever else goes to the lead and then pounce, or will get to the lead himself and if he gets away with 24/48- it's game over. If for some reason, there is a suicidal pace- I see Honor Code and Keen Ice picking up the pieces with Frosted not far behind. For some reason I just have a gut feeling Frosted is going to be 'worn out' and not going to put up a good performance enough to win. No specific reason for that- just a gut feeling I have. I'll never pick Tonalist outside of New York, I never pick the England invaders (just like I never pick American horses in Dubai), and no other horse in the race is talented enough even on their best day to beat Pharoah.
Anyone watch XBTV's "Training with the Stars"? They have 1-2 minute videos of AP and Beholder training almost everyday. Watching AP train, he is finally starting to look like his old self. After the Travers, he'd pleasantly gallop, without tugging on the reins or anything. He just looked dull. But after his last work, he's really rounding back into his top-form. He's fighting the exercise rider to gallop faster, comes back fighting to keep galloping, and his neck bowed. I have a feeling he is really gonna bring it October 31st, and he's really gonna put on a show.
BREAKING NEWS: Work All Week, 2014 eclipse award winner for champion sprinter, has been retired from racing after his trainer found a stress fracture in his knee after a gallop. According to his trainer, the injury could have gotten worse as it was leading to a slab fracture, so they are lucky they caught it at the time they did. Article on DRF to be posted later today.
American Pharoah is the only horse in this field who races on a different track every time out, and it doesn't bother him. If it weren't for Frosted challenging him in the Travers he would still be undefeated in 2015, and that challenge was from a jock that rode Frosted for the first time....a suicide mission, I believe it was called. If this happens in the BCC, Victor will not make the same mistake. Expect AP to win this race, after all, he is the best horse in the world, can run on any track, in any conditions, and he has won at this distance in the Kentucky Derby, with a crowded field. AP by 2 lengths, with Keen Ice, Frosted, and Tonalist in the Super.
Imperia finally worked! Went three furlongs in 38 flat. Hope to see him back soon.
WS ran well in the JCGC, however, he was blown away by Tonalist, so, what would change in the BCC?
Do you expect WS to set the pace, or to win??
Wicked Strong??? What does that mean Blueyedhusky??
Tonalist was closing fast his last two races. This time it wasn't even close. Sure the time wasn't good but this is a pure distance horse so you shouldn't expect 10 f in 2 minutes from him. Tonalist is certainly staying in my superfecta with AP, Frosted and Beholder. IMO those 4 horses are the elite in this group. I was expecting Effinex to prove something to him and while he made the money and will l be a GREAT longshot bet for the BCC the Surburban is looking more like the exception not the rule for him. Not sure if Tonalist will win the BCC but barring injury he'll be a player mid stretch or later.
Looks like a 2yo Honor Code...monstrous stretch run!.. Stakes wins are definitely in his future! Race 6 https://www.nyra.com/saratoga/...
G1 winner Tepin will be offered at the Fasig Tipton November sale. She will go through the sale as a racing or broodmare prospect.
Spendthrift Farm announces that they have acquired the stallion rights to G2 winner Race Day, who will stand at the farm for a fee of $8,500, Race Day is being pointed to the G2 Fayette stakes at Keeneland and will retire at the end of the year. According to DRF
But the downside is higher than the upside on running in the classic. They don't think he can settle in at a good pace and take 2nd or 3rd or maybe win? Ridiculous, the mile is not even a lock as we've seen upsets. Appealing tale looked good in his last two and Protonico is still a probable. Now AP can take dictate the pace like he did at Belmont since I don't think Beholder will press early to avoid her getting gassed, some other horse like (Frosted) will have to bother him again for the closers to have a chance.
I think people are going to far with saying Beholder should be favored to win the BCC over AP and are just reacting to the horse of the week hype. Yes Beholder is special and IMO I think she's the best mare since RA and is better than Zenyatta. Despite this the competition she's faced is downright inferior to that that the three year olds or older males have.(Bayern and HA were far from their best at the PC) Now don't get me wrong she has looked appropriately brilliant in oblitering that competition but this years BCC is going to be the best in a very long time. To be frank the expected field is far better than the 2010 classic and Zenyatta would probably do a lot worse than a close second. Is it possible Beholder wins? Is she one of the favorites along with AP? Yes. Should anyone in conscience be saying Beholder will probably beat AP who has beaten elite competition and only lost to a horse he had beaten three times prior in a perfect storm? No way in hell. The chances Beholder does what she did yesterday or in the PC against the BCC is very slim and IMO it's more possible she finishes off the board than manages to win. Most likely she comes in second or third either behind a victorious AP or AP and the horse that manages to beat both of them. I do think she'll get LM though . After the Zenyatta I've got her still as my third choice after AP and Frosted. I think she's probably equal or better than Frosted it's just Frosted's style is better suited for this race.
  • Show All 4 Comments
  • slewcrew7778 · Funny, I've felt all along that Pharoah's victories were the results of 'perfect storms'. Curious too about the "elite" that he has been beating. What makes them elite, other than having been beaten by Pharoah? Good horses put up strong numbers even when beating inferior com- petition, like Beholder and Liam's Map have been doing. And unlike anything Pharoah and his gallant band of 3yo playmates have posted so far. I'd say the jury was still out! · 1 day ago
  • buds · oh man you put your hoof in your mouth when you said she was better than zenyatta, and did it again by stating RA was better. RA isnt even in the same class as these 2 mares. RA was an exceptional mare thathad a great 3 year old campaign. Thats like saying Tim Tebow is the best football player ever because of his college career. Beholder has had a better careeer than RA, so has Royal Delta, so has Harve de Grace, and none of them can touch what Zenyatta did, she lost to blame by a nose or she would be considered one of the best EVER. and that was miss time by smith not her. As far as the favorite, I think that will easily be AP. · 21 hours ago

Meet Andrew Champagne


A native of upstate New York and a graduate of Ithaca College, Andrew Champagne fell in love with horse racing at a very early age on summer trips to Saratoga. His turf writing credits include time spent as a sportswriter, weekly columnist, and handicapper at The Saratogian, a summer working for The Saratoga Special, and "field research" at OTB facilities in Saratoga Springs and his hometown of Kingston. He also spent two years in the athletic communications office at Siena College, and interned with NBC Olympics at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver.

Andrew moved to Pasadena, Calif., in October of 2013, and now serves as an Associate Producer in HRTV's Digital Media department and Horse Racing Nation's Southern California writer. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewChampagne, and email him at andrewdchampagne@gmail.com.

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