I believe there is a strong preference for champion older male to be a dirt horse. That is to say, when Eclipse Award voters are faced with two dominant older male horses, Champion Older Male is awarded to the dirt horse. Likewise, there is a strong preference for the Horse of the Year award to go to a male dirt horse; either Champion Older Male or Champion 3 Year Old Male. However, in some years, we see a dominant horse from another division outclass the dirt males. I don't think that's a snub to dirt racing. I don't think that we're ignoring the accomplishments of other horses. There can only be one champion in each category, and choosing a champion is an acknowledgement of the best horse. I could understand Game on Dude being awarded Champion Older Male, and I would have respected that decision. Likewise, I would have supported Fort Larned being awarded Champion Older Male, Little Mike being awarded Champion Turf horse, and Wise Dan being awarded Horse of the Year. However, it seems that the current Eclipse Award voters recognize that Horse of the Year is the greatest horse, and that Horse of the Year should also win the division awards in which he is nominated. After Dan's sweep of the awards last year, I predicted that he would sweep the awards again this year. I was not surprised, and I am not disappointed by any of the results. Had Game on Dude run a better race in the Breeders Cup, i.e. finishing a close 2nd or 3rd rather than 9th, or if he had easily defeated Will Take Charge in the Clark, I believe the Eclipse Awards would have been different. Unfortunately, Game on Dude's year end performances gave the Eclipse Award voters cause to doubt his previous performances, ultimately leading them to select a more consistent, equally dominant horse, from another racing surface. I understand that Game on Dude fans are disappointed, and I understand why. But I stand with Andrew in celebrating the dominance, consistency, and agelessness of our 6 year old gelding, Champion Turf, Older Male, Horse of the Year. Go Wise Dan!
You manipulated the data to create the result you wanted. It's either that or you're that bad at classifying the horses' running styles. I'll Have Another, Super Saver, Eight Belles, and Barbaro were stalkers. Barbaro ran the opening 6 furlongs in fourth place, so apparently there was one pace horse and presser, then everyone else is a closer? In fact, you classify Big Brown as a presser and Eight Belles as a closer, but if you watch the race through the opening mile, they race head and head, and on the backstretch she actually gets a length in front of him. How can you take two horses that raced side by side, and give them different running styles? Not impressive.
Of final prep winners in the past 20 years, only 7 have won the Kentucky Derby, while 64 did not win the Kentucky Derby. It sounds staggering, but you have to remember... even in a year when one of the final major prep winners wins the Kentucky Derby, there's still 4 that didn't. So that statement is heavily weighted towards non-winners.
I hadn't refreshed my page and didn't know the answer was already given. For me, it was the clue about winning at Churchill, the clue about the sire, and the win percent. Congrats to Cocoa!
I knew there was a trick with the clue about racing in May at Churchill as a 3 year old. I fooled around with different options and realized it had to be the Oaks. Then I went through all the more recent fillies before finally coming to Nellie Morse. I checked her sire to make sure he won the Belmont, checked the Nellie Morse stakes to make sure it was won by a Seattle Slew, etc. I kept refreshing waiting for Brian's clue, and typed it in right away. Sorry for the seconditis! Hate to say it, but this was my first try!
Thanks friends! The silly thing is, I was fact checking the answer for the last 10 minutes because I was afraid of being wrong. I waited for Brian to put up the clue so I'd know I was right! haha
Nellie Morse. 4th female Preakness winner.
It's hard to compare Shanghai Bobby's campaign to the past horses because of the new Derby point system. Previous Juvenile champions were assured a spot in the starting gate, and could afford to rest until later in the spring and/or make starts in allowance races. This year, the Juvenile winner has to scrape points together just like all the other horses.
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