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Breeders' Cup 2017

HRN Original Blog:
Maryland's Own GQ

Oxbow: Ten Easy Steps To Winning Preakness 138

It happens every year. Not long after the Kentucky Derby winner enters the Winner's Circle at Churchill Downs, the hype starts. Over the next 14 days an overabundance of articles get written, putting the Derby winner on a pedestal higher than any of his/her peers.


Regardless of the circumstances, whether the betting favorite or longshot, horse racing fans and media hungry for a Triple Crown winner toss logic, ignoring any negative signs but accentuating the positive.


This year the overwhelming positive sign occurred on the Monday (May 13) of Preakness Week at Belmont Park. Derby winner Orb turned in a stellar workout (4 f in 47 flat). It wasn’t the time but how effortlessly he did it that drew praise from his trainer, Shug McGaughey, using superlatives that he rarely utters when talking about one of his horses. And everyone took the bait.


From that point on, you couldn’t find a soul who was willing to publicly support one of the other unsuspecting 3-year-olds who didn’t stand a chance against the second coming of Secretariat. They were simply running for second purse money.

Well the unthinkable happened, Orb lost. He ran a disappointing 4th while Oxbow, who finished 6th in the Derby, took the Preakness field gate to wire.


Off at odds of 15-1, many were speechless. What a fluke! What a horrible race? Why was it so horrible? Maybe because they didn’t see it coming?!   


How could this have happened?! Here’s how…

Step 1: Arrive early… at least five (5) days before the race.





















Step 2: Take in the fresh air around your temporary surroundings 

























Step 3: Sample the local greens  





















Step 4: Trust your Hall of Fame trainer by getting to the track early… 


















Step 5: …he knows what's best, which keeps you “on the muscle” AFTER a jog 



















Step 6: Have close friends by your side 


















Step 7: Put on your Game Face as you enter the paddock
























Step 8: Let a Hall of Fame jockey come along for the ride 






























Step 9: Stay calm and conserve energy before the race






















Step 10: Strut your stuff letting the world know they underestimated your ability




















Photo credits: Gary "GQ" Quill and Chris "The Dark Horse" Sorenson 





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Older Comments about Oxbow: Ten Easy Steps To Winning Preakness 138...

You forgot STEP#11- Having horses block the entire race for you.
IHATC, He can certainly answer for himself, but just so you don't have to wait for a late-night haunting, no ; Sully is not Sullivan, but Sullivan is Cocoa. Not an alias of Cocoa's , he explained that he couldn't log in under Cocoa on occasion. The only other username fir me, here, is when part of my e-mail address comes up.
Sullivan = Cocoa = Cocoa2, Sully's other accounts remain unknown
Sully are you Sullivan and Cocoa? You guys have so many names, like Hollywood27 is actually vodkak and saratoga joe. It gets confusing to figure out who is who, other than Mary and Rafirox
I was not at all sucked into the Orb hype, and I turned on him in the derby only to eat that from what I believe was the track condition to his liking (even though there was a $10 win wager placed in my honor by a friend that I turned onto him in the FLA Derby). I'm mostly baffled by these "I told you so" or "this is why you should've had the winner" articles coming out after the race. It's so easy to analyze after-the-fact but where are the predictions??? I hope this shit isn't the effort to revitalize the sport because it's f*ing nonsense!
I watched as the capped tooth one has an early sprinter, miler and router ALL try to knock off Bayakoa and it was a total failure
True story. But I still think ol' D.Wayne putting in another horse who positioned himself just right sure helped!
Exellente Mas!!
NIce job at the Preakness by the HRN team. Great working with you both, Gary and Chris.
Excellent article!
Hahaha this is great! Awesome photos LOL!
Remember him winning the Lecomte over just a slightly wet surface? Oxbow likes these damp tracks
Love the pictures! I got sucked into the Orb hype, I will admit. Oxbow had been on my radar for a while but I wasn't willing to accept that any horse could win the Preakness besides Orb. It will be fun to see their matchup in three weeks!

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                Meet Gary Quill

  I am the most passionate person on the planet when it comes to thoroughbred horse racing! One sunny summer day in 1964 at Timonium Race Track is where my Dad and mentor introduced me to “The Sport of Kings”. Since that day, I have had the pleasure to visit over 40 different tracks across North America. Though an IT professional by trade, I’ve had a part-time gig with the Maryland Jockey Club since 1988.

here are thousands of rail-birds who claim to be great handicappers. Well, I don’t claim to be the best… just the most passionate and one that won’t tout “chalk”. Like a savvy stock broker, I look for value and often find it. Unlike the talking heads on horse racing television networks and the dozens of websites featuring handicapper’s opinions, I’m ACCOUNTABLE. That is, good or bad, you’ll always know how my previously posted picks performed along with a running record of my BEST BET and LONGSHOT Play of the Day selections for Maryland tracks (Laurel and Pimlico) at TheRacingBiz, see "The GQ Approach".

   In addition to focusing on the Maryland thoroughbred racing circuit, each year I follow the Derby Trail and post “GQ’s Derby Double Dozen” in early February. 

   My personal mission is to rejuvenate interest in thoroughbred horse racing. Being able to share my energy, thoughts and opinions on this sport via HRN will certainly help the cause.


"I lost $2 at Santa Anita and I've spent $3 million trying to get it back." - Mickey Rooney

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