Race of the Week 2017

HRN Original Blog:
Dueling Down The Stretch

2013 Preakness: Post Position the cause of Orb's Demise

Another year, another Triple Crown hope lost. Orb seemed like the best shot to dominate in 2013, and while he was able to overcome many curses and trends in the Kentucky Derby, he was unable to overcome the one post in the Preakness.
Did the horse just not fire, was the post his undoing? What went wrong? I said it before the race and I’ll say it after, the one post did him no favors. Orb is a big, strapping colt who needs a bit of time to get himself into gear. On the outside and in the clear he is able to do that. While was positioned in the one hole, in the Fountain of Youth, do remember, he was moved to the outside. He makes wide, sweeping, breathtaking, sustained runs, but is not known for his agility.
What does this mean? Nothing. This takes nothing away from Orb or his previous wins. Do not do this horse the disservice of saying he didn’t fire, when once he did get running, he closed for fourth. Do I mean to say he would have won had he been on the outside? No, but is his chances would have been greatly enhanced. The only thing this means is that while Orb is perhaps the best of his generation, he does in fact have a weakness. He has many strengths, one of his biggest is his versatility, but like many others he does have an Achilles’ heel. That Achilles’ heel has been exposed as his agility.
Orb is not Mine That Bird, small and slight of build with a huge turn of foot. He is a large and long striding colt. His competition knew this and capitalized on it, by boxing him in and not allowing him the time and clear path he needed in order to be the most effective. That and that alone is what beat Orb. Not a lack of fitness or a lack of game, but a post that allowed his competition to capitalize off of his one weakness.
As for those who wanted to call out distance or class limitations on Itsmyluckyday and Oxbow ... What have they to say now? Oxbow ran away from a strong field, with horses considered above him in class. He finally got a good draw, he finally got a clean trip, and he again showed how dominant he could be when given the opportunity.  
Itsmyluckyday, whom faded badly in the Derby, proved his doubters wrong as well. With no mud and no insane pace to cause a complete meltdown, the son of Lawyer Ron proved he was plenty capable of handling more distance.
My overall feelings on this year’s Preakness ... that like every other year, it proves to be the most formful of the three Triple Crown events. In this year’s Derby, most of this year’s top prospects were taken out due to insane fractions or inability to handle the surface. Orb, a talented colt, got the trip he needed and obviously handled the mud. Itsmyluckyday and Oxbow both raced close to the pace and both were likely compromised. This time around there was no mud and no insane pace and both horses showed their true abilities.
I understand the disappointment in losing a Triple Crown hope. But, instead look at the talent that emerged, or re-emerged for that matter. Let us look forward to what should prove to be a very fun and exciting summer of races.


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Older Comments about 2013 Preakness: Post Position the cause of Orb's Demise...

You said it matthew!
I'm remember thinking before the race that only two horses had won the Preakness since 1960 from the #1 post. If one is superstitious (and I'm not), one could think that Orb would be in trouble. Despite the post, I felt that if Rosario could get him outside by the second turn that he was going to win. He didn't, he looked bothered on the inside, and tired on top of it. Even if he had been able to get on the outside, I still think that he would not have run down Oxbow. The pace was too slow and Orb's big run in the Derby led to a bounce. And the post didn't help. Itsmylucky day ran better than I had anticipated.
tv, looks like you chevy-ed some folks. :)
Here's my word of the day>....SHUUUUDDDDDUUUUUPPPPP!!!!!!
Free, too :) P.S. Merriam-Webster word of the day is canker, the verb. To corrupt the spirit of.
Someone above may not wish to use words "out of a Dick and Jane reader", but he might make good use of a second grade spelling book since one or two of his key word(s) above are spelled incorrectly.
Were are here to communicate about horse racing not to "treat languare as the mosaic the way [it is] supposed to be used". It does seem like "someone' used it as a dating service.
Right. It's a dating service ;)
No one is here for a vocab lesson.
BTW..Here is a word of the day for you - Jabberwocky
Okay Chevy.....I gotch!
I treat languare as the mosaic the way is it supposed to be used, not words out of the Dick and Jane reader as many do...Word a Day from the University of Wisconsin increases my vocaublary on a daily basis. Word today is chevy: to chase or annoy
What is unadulterated melarky? Why don't you just say you disagree and post actual facts as to why?
Francis Bacon in 1620 knew why..."the human understanding once it has adopted an opinion collects any instances that confirm it and though contrary instances may be numerous and more weighty, it either does not notice them or else rejects them, in order that this opinion will remain unshaken" THINK about it there are hunderds of reasons behind any aspect of a race
what unadulteraed melarky....A speed favoring track and a myriad of other reasons are JUST as LOGICAL...Dream land to isolate such a complex outcome to a single AFTER THE FACT reason...HOGWASH.
jay not saying you are.many in the public are.all of a sudden to many he is public enemy #1.the horse ran on empty.nothing wrong with that.he was coming off 3 monster efforts.just shows he is not a machine.
Although, I was not a fan of the move on AK...at all. The Great Orb was in PERFECT position entering the far turn. Perhaps...a little too perfect. THAT probably did him in.
tm, don't get me wrong. I'm not trashing Joel. I think it was smart, VERY smart for him to move like he did. But, the Great Orb sure didn't like it because he was within ten feet of other horses, apparently.
amzing when joel rides and wins he is the best around.when he loses he is a bum.trust me and i say this with first hand experience.my pals horse ,vyjack.the 2 races joel was on his back where his 2 best.he ran relaxed and proffessional.his hands are incredible.no knock on the other jocks .but vyjack for them was a handful.joel almost put him to sleep.he got him to relax so good.also jay.to those trashing joel.i am sure they trashed him after the derby and the dubai races.after all it was probably the horse in those races.joel had nothing to do with it.

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Meet Laura Pugh

Laura Pugh got her first taste of Thoroughbred Racing when she watched War Emblem take the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes in 2001. After that point, she fell in love with the sport, reading every piece of news and information she could get her fingertips on.

Laura has a long history with horses in general, taking her first ride on her fifth birthday, with her first official riding lesson when she was eight years old. Both years she attended college she joined her school’s equestrian team, first at the now closed Virginia Intermont College, then again at Delaware State University. Unfortunately, after back and shoulder injuries, she had to hang up her saddle. 

In 2010 Laura came to Horse Racing Nation, but soon branched out to other media outlets, such as Lady and the Track, TwinSpires.com, and USRacing. She currently works at a local newspaper as a community reporter, while making a return to Horse Racing Nation, where she will once again feature her opinionated columns on the latest in horse racing. 

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