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HRN Original Blog:
Zipse At The Track

I Am Willing to Give Drosselmeyer One More Chance

Have you ever become a fan of a horse who constantly disappoints you, but is able to do just enough to keep you on the hook a little bit longer? Sure you have … we all have. One such enigma for me is the four-year-old colt, Drosselmeyer. Sounds strange to call a winner of the Belmont Stakes a disappointment, but that is what the grand looking son of Distorted Humor has mostly proven to be for me.
Maybe I thought a little too much of him when I saw him break his maiden as a two-year-old at Churchill Downs. Or perhaps a strong win over Prince Will I Am in his three-year-old debut was not as good as I made it out to be. To tell you the truth, I felt slightly strung along in both of his races in New Orleans. He ran 4th in the Risen Star Stakes and then 3rd in the Louisiana Derby, but both races were came complete with convenient excuses as to explain why the young colt, I thought so highly of, did not dazzle his way to the Fair Grounds' winner's circle. I was disappointed when his earnings bubble burst on the wrong side of the 20 horse Kentucky Derby limit.
I felt foolish when his backup plan for the Derby, the Dwyer Stakes at Belmont Park, saw him finish a well beaten 2nd to Fly Down. In fact, I had to eat a little crow that day. In my disappointment, I felt a small satisfaction in being released from the lure of Drosselmeyer. No longer would I write about his potential, or tear up losing tickets placed on his nose. And then came the Belmont.
Oh Drosselmeyer, why do you continue to play with my emotions like the cute girl in 9th grade Biology class? You guessed it; Drosselmeyer won the Belmont, turning the tables on Fly Down. On my birthday no less! All that potential was finally realized … or maybe he was just another mediocre Belmont winner all too common in recent years. Do you know? I don't know.
Truth be told, when a horse, who you had strong feelings for, wins a race as big as the Belmont, you tend to jump right back on the bandwagon before he makes it to the winner's circle. And that's how it was for me and Drosselmeyer. A minor injury ended any momentum he may have had from his big win in the final leg of the Triple Crown. He doesn't always make it easy to be a big fun, does he?

[Does Drosselmeyer deserve a higher ranking than his current #56 ranking on HRN's Power Rankings of Active Horses?]
Flash forward to this March, the attractive chestnut was back, and I was watching. Two failed attempts in stakes races at Tampa and Gulfstream had me doubting him again. The Belmont was a fluke, I thought. He will never be the horse I thought he may turn out to be … although those races were after a long layoff and they weren't really that bad. Maybe if he could get a better set-up and improve third time back, we would all see the real Drosselmeyer. The tango continues.
That better set-up came three weeks ago in New York when the WinStar/Bill Mott colt fought gamely from the rail to defeat a couple of toughies in Birdrun and Inherit The Gold. The victory in the 1 ¼ mile One Count Stakes was Drosselmeyer's first race back at the site of his one huge win. On one hand I still see all that potential in him, on the other hand I don't want to be fooled again.
Now it is 2011 Belmont Stakes week once again, and Drosselmeyer is back at Belmont for his biggest race so far of the year. He’ll attempt to remain unbeaten over the 1 ½-mile Belmont Stakes when he runs in the Grade 2, $150,000 Brooklyn Handicap, against a salty field of five that includes last year's Breeders' Cup Marathon winner, Eldaafer. Seems like as good a spot as any to begin my Belmont Stakes betting. The Brooklyn being the first leg of the Brooklyn-Belmont Double.
Somehow I think the Brooklyn could be the start of something big for my old friend, Drosselmeyer … or maybe not.



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Older Comments about I Am Willing to Give Drosselmeyer One More Chance...

I too was smitten by D. hoping to see him make us both happy ..also hoping A.A. will make me very happy with an on the board finish.
Yep, Zazu, Mine that Bird etc
I've never really warmed up to Drosselmeyer for some reason but I really liked his last race. I'm going to try and beat him with Birdrun and Eldaafer I think.
BTW, I've been in love with him since right before the Derby, so I know where you're coming from! ;)
Yes, Brian, in Dross's sophomore yr, he was on again/off again. But if the Belmont was any indication (as opposed to a straight-up fluke), he likes it there. Now, 9 times out of 10, horses wont come back the same after an injury, so I expected Dross to be on again/off again when he returned. But I imagine that last win gave him his head & heart back, so I'd like to think he's got this next one.
Have fun down there, Melaina ... how did he look? Fantastic, I bet!
I am willing to give him a chance too. I look forward to cheering him on on Friday--especially since I saw him work at Belmont just yesterday!

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Meet Brian Zipse 

Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing since birth. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra and Zenyatta. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. 
As Managing Editor of Horse Racing Nation, Brian authors a daily column as Zipse at the Track, or ZATT for short, and adds his editorial flare to the overall content of the website. Brian also serves on the the Board of Directors of ReRun Thoroughbred Adoption and is a Vox Populi committee member. 
A graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives in Suburban Chicago with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra, where he is a professional golf instructor when he is not following the horses.  

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