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Breeders' Cup 2017

HRN Original Blog:
Zipse At The Track

A Flat Out Huge Performance

Flat Out wins 2011 Suburban.
Photo: NYRA, Adam Coglianese
For those of us who have been following Flat Out for the better part of three years, the winning of a big race like yesterday's Grade 2 Suburban Handicap at Belmont Park came as no surprise. What was surprising however, was the way he did it. A 6 ½ length runaway as the longest shot on the board at 13-1? A final time of 1:46.64 for the nine furlongs with a Beyer speed figure of 113? Talk about a flat out breakout performance, this was it. In 124 previous runnings of the traditional holiday weekend affair, I dare say there have not been many horses who have ever run better in the Suburban.
In winning just his second stakes race of his career, Flat Out recorded his fourth win in only nine lifetime starts. Not a lot of action for a talented five-year-old, but the son of Flatter, who was so impressive in the Smarty Jones Stakes back in January of 2009 has been besieged with quarter-cracks and setbacks throughout his career.

"We've had faith in him the whole time; he's just had problems, one after the other. He's a super horse and we found out today how good he is,” said owner Jack Preston.

Yesterday's pip of a performance announced that he is fully back from a twenty-month layoff from April of 2009 until December of last year, and now he looks better than ever.

With my money riding on his nose yesterday, I watched Flat Out from the very beginning. Alex Solis kept on the outside and not too far from a decent early pace set by even-money favorite Rodman. Even early on you could tell that Solis had a lot of horse, as Flat Out looked ready to roll while his jockey waited for the time to let him loose. Even under little encouragement, Flat Out was able to inch closer to the lead as the chalk led the field through opening fractions of 23.95, 47.02 and 1:10.65. By the time the field was on the middle of the turn, he was only a few lengths behind and ready to explode. When the horses hit the straightaway, there was little doubt who was running the best.

Flat Out swooped quickly to the lead on the far outside and powered home down the Belmont lane. Gobbling up large chunks of ground with every stride, he was further lengthening his lead at the wire. Hymn Book, the second choice, outgamed Rodman to earn second place money, but make no mistake, this race was all about Flat Out.

[As of this morning Flat Out is still nowhere to be seen on HRN's Active Power Rankings]

"We gave him time, and waited on him, and today, he's paying us back," said winning trainer, Charles Dickey. "We've done everything we can right for him and he's responding real well and running good."

Running good may be a bit of an understatement. If Flat Out can do what he did yesterday again, he will prove a major player in all the major stakes for older horses right up through this fall's Breeders' Cup Classic.



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Older Comments about A Flat Out Huge Performance...

You may be correct Michael. The wa Flat Out came up from behind was just pure poetry in motion to watch. It was very exciting to see.
Thanks lou'sfan ... Scooter Dickey mentioned Saratoga or Monmouth for his next start. I would like to see him in the Whitney.
Nice pick ZATT! I had a few dollars on him as well. Where do you think he will run next?
Without it you would be breaking on a turn.
I stand corrected. They ran out of the chute. Never knew there was a 1 turn 1 1/8 race. Thanks for the lesson. Still like Flat Out. I'm siding with him all the way to the BC. He looked good.
I didn't know they had 1 turn 1 1/8's at Belmont? The track is a 1 1/2 circumference. How can they run a 1 turn? I might have been born yesterday, but I stayed up all night.
Good observation. That probably doesn't make the final time and speed rating as impressive? On the other hand he raced wide the Jockey had a "stout hold" on the back stretch, or he was just breezing. A handily finsih with almost no whip action from the Jockey. This race was ALMOST PURE exercise. So that final time & speed rating albeit at one turn is still impressive.
Remember it was a one turn mile and an eighth.
Racing wide in a mile & 1/8th race is a very possible indication of conditioning the horse to go LONGER.

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Meet Brian Zipse 

Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat, Forego, and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra, Zenyatta, and American Pharoah. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. 

The Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, Brian authored a daily column as Zipse at the Track, or ZATT for short, and added his editorial flare to the overall content of the website. Now a Senior Writer for HRN, Brian continues to contribute his thoughts on racing, as well as co-hosting the popular racing show, HorseCenter. A big supporter of thoroughbred aftercare, he serves as the President of The Exceller Fund.

Brian's work has also been published on several leading industry sites. He has consulted for leading contest site Derby Wars, is both a Hall of Fame and NTRA poll voter, and is a Vox Populi committee member. 

A horse owner and graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives just outside of Louisville with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra.


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