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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing

TAMPA BAY TODAY – APR 19

[Hopefully back on the turf today after Saturday’s rains had grass races rescheduled. If they can, they will, Tampa Bay trying to salvage the weekend as the meet winds down to May 3]

In today’s seventh race for three year old maiden fillies going one mile on the turf, there are several well bred for turf newcomers but whatever the lineage, they all have to beat First Course (3-1), a good, significantly troubled third in her recent Tampa debut.

The effort was her second on turf overall–her grass debut a late-running fourth in a Kentucky Downs sprint–and the big filly does wear bandages up front, presumably for support as she does race regularly. But it’s her Tampa mile that tells her story.

After breaking sharply from post eight in an 11-filly field, she was bumped lightly entering the lower first turn, forcing her four wide rounding the bend. Thereafter she never saved an inch of ground.

Cranking up four wide across the course at mid-far turn, her momentum carrying her six wide into the lane, yet she kept her forward momentum, the first two finishers well ahead at the wire, the winner a turf meant firster for Christophe Clement.

We think you’ll agree after checking the Tampa Bay Today Video replay, Tampa RACE 3 on MAR 7. We’re taking First Course to win, no price restrictions, and an exacta box with a Clement newcomer, Sassy Sass (7-2), bred both sides for turf and whose only sibling won on grass.

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4 Responses

  1. I find it odd that Tampa has not asked the legislature to extend their meeting. They’ve done a great job and most of these horses and workers have nowhere to go until things loosen up elsewhere.

  2. Sorry, McD, didn’t see until now. Actually placed my wager early before writing the column and frankly surprised races taken off Sunday, so I was lucky–although horses with an affinity to turf seem to take to the Tampa dirt; that’s empirical, have no data.

  3. Larry, in order to keep simulcasting all year, Tampa had to apply for a racing date in summer, June 30–it’s a fiscal year or something in the law thing.

    Anyway, it seems to me that with that date, they can request additional race days; I’m sure they must be talking about that right now.

    Many of their horsemen call Monmouth Park home during summer and some outfits already have gone, so it depends on horse and horsemen colony, but I agree with you.

    The horses not always the greatest in the lower classes–the case everywhere–but love their main track and turf course. I wouldn’t be surprised if they formally applied to fill in some of the dates between May 3 and June 30.

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