Last year was my first year following the races. I watched the Triple Crown before, but I never cared. Last year, however, I was able to complete my own Triple Crown, picking Animal Kingdom, Shackleford, and Ruler on Ice in the Triple Crown races. Using my own way of handicapping and a copy of my local paper, I was able to show off my newly found skill to the world. My days at the track were also successful. I was amazed, I had a hidden talent. During the past year, I have read books and watched videos about the history of horse racing and handicapping techniques. I wanted to learn about those that came before and what makes a winner. I did whatever I could to learn about it. This was a new sport to me. I loved it. I then went on to create my own stakes formula and refined my skill.
Having never witnessed a Triple Crown, this one would be wonderful. I would love to see I'll Have Another win and witness an amazing and historic sweep of the ancient stakes races. The Belmont Stakes is my favorite race of the year, let alone the Triple Crown. People say it's the toughest test of the three in terms of distance but I find that it is one that brings out the true character of a horse. A winning horse isn't one that has the best speed or best stamina, but it is the one with character and heart. Secretariat wasn't supposed to be the great horse he was, but he had the will to win and that is why he was able to route everyone in that Belmont. Coil looked like any other horse in the Haskell field last year but wasn't anyone special. He was able to win because he wanted to. Ruler on Ice was the long shot that no one was talking about. He won because he had that twinkle in his eye, that special something that made him a winner. I saw that and that is why I picked him. If you asked me now why I picked him that was all I could say. There was nothing special about him, except that he wanted to win. That's what I look for in a winner, the will to win.
Whoever wins the Belmont will be a horse that has the will to win, the heart of a champion. I'll Have Another, Dullahan, Union Rags, Paynter, Street Life, Unstoppable U, Optimizer, Atigun, Ravelo's Boy, Five Sixteen, and Guyana Star Dweej all haveone thing in common. It is that they all have a chance to win, to put their name on the board, to immortalized themselves in Belmont Stakes history, and for one in horse racing history. The only thing that matters is who has the will to win. Here is my question to you: who wants it more?
A Triple Crown would be special, historic, and a wonderful day in my life. I would love to see a Triple Crown, but do I think it will happen. No. But can it. Yes. Anything can happen, but we won't know until this Saturday. Which horse will win? Will history be made? Will someone come out the dark to route the field? Or will it be a friend that takes away all that puts horse racing in the public eye? Anything can happen, we will just have to wait and see.
-- Michael Tartaglia (mjtags11)