Treat Whore Going to Breeders’ Cup

A few notes on Brooklyn Backstretch favorites on this chilly upstate morning…

Thorn Song, referred to here as a “treat whore” in August, wired the field in the Shadwell Turf Mile on Saturday at Keeneland. His racing at this level has been disappointing for some time and he clearly didn’t much like Saratoga, but he dispatched this field beautifully. I wish that I had a more regal image of him, but this one will have to do…

Last November Mushka became my favorite filly when she made a huge move around the turn to win the Demoiselle at Aqueduct; she nearly immediately got injured and was out of training all winter, returning to the races at Saratoga in July. She made her return in an optional claimer, finishing third, and has been spotted rather ambitiously since then, running fourth (by 27) in the Alabama and seventh in the Puckerup.

Friday at Keeneland, she finally got back to the winner’s circle, winning an allowance by 2 ¾ lengths. Last fall, I was convinced that she was going to be a seriously contending three-year-old filly, and I’m sure that I’m not the only one who wistfully thinks about what might have been without the injury. Nonetheless, it’s good to see her return to her winning ways, and maybe she’ll stick around long enough to develop into a competitive older filly.

Congrats to Mushka and her connections, and a get well soon to Johnny V; he rode her to this win before his scary spill in the next race, which has put him out indefinitely with a concussion.

Did Javier Castellano really blow a kiss to the crowd just after the wire in the Canadian International? I’m sure that he was thrilled to win on longshot Marsh Side, but blowing kisses? I can’t recall ever having seen Castellano do anything like that….have I just not been paying attention? Blowing a kiss???

Two-year-old Early Response goes again for his first win today at Belmont; he finished second in two starts at Saratoga, the first by a hair over a quagmire of a track. He’s experimented with running styles, sitting off the pace in his first race and going to the lead in the second, and he steps up here, from 50K maiden claimers to a maiden special weight. He was in Saratoga until last week, and the folks at the Galluscio barn up here were pretty high on him when I saw them yesterday. Good luck and safe trip to him and Mike Luzzi.

And though I haven’t been following her terribly closely beyond reading the headlines, Pepper’s Pride deserves recognition and congratulations for her record-setting seventeenth win yesterday at Zia Park. Regardless of the competition against which she’s raced through her career, she’s won seventeen races in a row, and that’s a pretty amazing accomplishment. During yesterday’s racing telecast, ESPN put a big alert on the crawl at the bottom of the screen declaring her victory; it’s a shame that most of the people watching probably had absolutely no idea what they were talking about.

2 thoughts on “Treat Whore Going to Breeders’ Cup

  1. Kudos to Peppers Pride-I know it is only $867,000 in total earnings-but A Win is A Win is A Win…and if it was that easy, every minor league track horse would be doing it.

  2. i recall castellano being the jock on bellamy road in the wood a few years ago and blowing kisses and dancing a jig around the 8th pole. cheers, chris

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