Photo: Coady Photography
Forget Belmont, Del Mar or Keeneland. The next place I want to see host the Breeders’ Cup is Fairplex Park. I could see it now, the BC Classic horses going round and round the five-eighths mile racetrack. Wouldn’t that be fun? Best of all, I would get my future bet in for the Classic on the same day that the surprising announcement of Fairplex getting the World Championships hits the frontpage of HRN. I mean seriously, who could stop Rise Up?
The record may read 5-of-9 lifetime, but Rise Up is really a perfect 3-for-3. That’s his record on bullrings, you see, and that is all I’d really be interested in handicapping when the Breeders’ Cup visits Fairplex.
You remember what he did in his two starts as a juvenile on a bullring, don’t you? Sure you do. Rise Up won the Jean Lafitte and the Delta Downs Jackpot like his tail was on fire both times he ran at Delta Downs. Granted the Vinton, Louisiana oval, at three-quarters of a mile in circumference, allows for a little more free-running than you would see during a Breeders’ Cup in Pomona, California, but still, a bullring is a bullring.
Two failed starts in a pair of graded route stakes in New Orleans to begin the year? Draw a line right through them. His trainer Tom Amoss readily admits that the track configuration at Fair Grounds is not suited for the son of Rockport Harbor.
As a matter of fact, before the Louisiana Derby had even completed, I turned to my group and said, “Get that horse to a bullring!” No one there understood what I was talking about as they watched with glee as Vicar’s In Trouble skipped to the wire, but I’ve often been misunderstood, and I knew what I meant.
You could say that when I found out Rise Up was entered in last night’s $100,000 Robert Hilton Memorial at Charles Town, I was as happy as the fattest hippo during feeding time at the zoo. Sure enough, Rise Up was in bullring heaven, and rolled his competition early and often. The 10 ¾-length drubbing of the rest of the overmatched field was further proof that Rise Up is a beast on the bullrings.
I will be releasing many other compelling reasons why the Breeders’ Cup needs to go to Fairplex Park in the coming weeks on the pages of ZATT, but if I’ve already convinced you, please join me, Paul and Andrena Van Doren, Tom Amoss, and Leandro Goncalves in signing your name below to get the Breeders’ Cup to Fairplex Park ball rolling.