Standout Losing Efforts

Apollo
Posts: 353
Joined: Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:05 pm

Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:12 am

Equipoise wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:01 pm
Seattle Slew in the 1978 Jockey Club Gold Cup. He sprinted for the full mile and a half, battled a fresh Exceller all through the stretch and only lost by a nose. A stride after the wire, he was in front again.

Bill Shoemaker, who rode Exceller, said after the race, “When I hit the stretch I thought I had it won by 10 lengths. Because horses can’t do what Slew just did.”
I think there were more intriguing variables during that race than any other I am aware of. Slew was hyper to such extent he broke through the gate before the start and went quite a distance before being pulled back and reloaded. Recently I found the Miami Herald sports section from the day following that race. I saved lots of papers after major sporting events in that era. Former trainer Billy Turner was emotional and livid after the defeat. He said it was senseless for Slew to be trained that way and ridden that way. Turner called Cordero a whoop de do jockey, or something like that, implying that it was idiotic to get into a speed duel. Turner said Slew was 15 lengths better than Affirmed at a mile and a half. Obviously that's emotional exaggeration but Turner was trying to make the point that Slew didn't need to chase Affirmed or dash out of the gate at that distance. I wish I had the exact quotes in front of me. I found maybe 150 old '70s to early '80s papers in a trunk a few weeks ago and that one is bunched among them, all yellowing and fragile.

Laz Berrera didn't want a rerun of the Marlboro Cup in which Slew coasted on an easy lead. Barrera not only entered Life's Hope as rabbit to help Affirmed, but he told Life's Hope's jockey to get alongside Slew and scream at him throughout the race. That is seldom remembered or mentioned but it probably contributed to the suicidal fractions.

I've always believed Affirmed recognized Slew as the horse he couldn't catch in the Marlboro Cup. That's why Affirmed joined the duel instead of lounging further back. Just a theory but I've never heard a better one. Affirmed was accustomed to catching anything in front of him. Barrera always emphasized what a smart horse he was.

Shoemaker wasn't the only one who thought he would win by daylight at the top of the stretch. Miami Herald turf writer Luther Evans -- who attended the race and wrote the articles -- said he briefly turned his his head and didn't want to watch when Exceller caught Slew. Evans used the same estimate, that it would be a 10 length margin. He thought it would be sad for Slew to lose in that fashion so he looked away. Evans said only after a few seconds did he see out of the corner of his eye that Slew had regrouped, so he turned and watched fully again.

I remember Andrew Beyer's Sunday lead in the Washington Post: "Exceller won Saturday's Jockey Club Gold Cup. Seattle Slew was its hero."
Apollo
Posts: 353
Joined: Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:05 pm

Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:24 am

Starine wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:30 pm
I'm sure I will think of more later, but the one that came to mind right away was Carson Hollow in the Test Stakes. She dueled with eventual winner You for the length of the stretch, after setting dazzling fractions of 21:3 and 44:1, to lose by mere inches.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oCuJjhBBCSs
I attended that race. It is the best race I have ever seen in person. I didn't have a penny riding on the outcome but I was absolutely gutted when You won the photo. Everyone was pulling for the local Carson Hollow. In the dozen years or so I attended Saratoga regularly, that race stands out above all. I remember eating at Ripe Tomato later and barely being able to taste anything.

Durkin's call was fantastic. That's a major part of it. And we knew it in real time. Years later I was the one who asked cf1970 to find this race and post it to his YouTube channel. He was finding one race after another but did not have this one. Eventually he changed his user name but I'll always think of him as cf1970.

I had nearly 300 old sports videos on my YouTube channel until it was shut down due to copyright complaints from the NFL and IOC. None of the horse racing sources cared. But the NFL somehow brainstormed that a 1970 video of two minutes thirty seconds worth of 1970 Sugar Bowl highlights was a threat to humanity, and my channel needed to be zapped as punishment. Archie Manning played in that game. It was obviously before he ever entered the NFL. But that didn't prevent the NFL from claiming the video as its own, and sending YouTube vultures after me.
Equipoise
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Sep 13, 2013 8:30 am

Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:04 am

Apollo wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:12 am
Equipoise wrote:
Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:01 pm
Seattle Slew in the 1978 Jockey Club Gold Cup. He sprinted for the full mile and a half, battled a fresh Exceller all through the stretch and only lost by a nose. A stride after the wire, he was in front again.

Bill Shoemaker, who rode Exceller, said after the race, “When I hit the stretch I thought I had it won by 10 lengths. Because horses can’t do what Slew just did.”
I think there were more intriguing variables during that race than any other I am aware of. Slew was hyper to such extent he broke through the gate before the start and went quite a distance before being pulled back and reloaded. Recently I found the Miami Herald sports section from the day following that race. I saved lots of papers after major sporting events in that era. Former trainer Billy Turner was emotional and livid after the defeat. He said it was senseless for Slew to be trained that way and ridden that way. Turner called Cordero a whoop de do jockey, or something like that, implying that it was idiotic to get into a speed duel. Turner said Slew was 15 lengths better than Affirmed at a mile and a half. Obviously that's emotional exaggeration but Turner was trying to make the point that Slew didn't need to chase Affirmed or dash out of the gate at that distance. I wish I had the exact quotes in front of me. I found maybe 150 old '70s to early '80s papers in a trunk a few weeks ago and that one is bunched among them, all yellowing and fragile.

Laz Berrera didn't want a rerun of the Marlboro Cup in which Slew coasted on an easy lead. Barrera not only entered Life's Hope as rabbit to help Affirmed, but he told Life's Hope's jockey to get alongside Slew and scream at him throughout the race. That is seldom remembered or mentioned but it probably contributed to the suicidal fractions.

I've always believed Affirmed recognized Slew as the horse he couldn't catch in the Marlboro Cup. That's why Affirmed joined the duel instead of lounging further back. Just a theory but I've never heard a better one. Affirmed was accustomed to catching anything in front of him. Barrera always emphasized what a smart horse he was.

Shoemaker wasn't the only one who thought he would win by daylight at the top of the stretch. Miami Herald turf writer Luther Evans -- who attended the race and wrote the articles -- said he briefly turned his his head and didn't want to watch when Exceller caught Slew. Evans used the same estimate, that it would be a 10 length margin. He thought it would be sad for Slew to lose in that fashion so he looked away. Evans said only after a few seconds did he see out of the corner of his eye that Slew had regrouped, so he turned and watched fully again.

I remember Andrew Beyer's Sunday lead in the Washington Post: "Exceller won Saturday's Jockey Club Gold Cup. Seattle Slew was its hero."
Thanks for the info Apollo. Fascinating. Nice to hear that Beyer had a good thing to say about Slew since he didn’t seem to think much of him as a two- and three-year-old.
FlyToTheStars
Posts: 132
Joined: Wed Dec 13, 2017 8:20 am

Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:53 pm

Captain Bodgit losing to Silver Charm in the Derby. He was pouring it on and just was denied. He was so game, even with his wonky tendon.
WarBiscuit
Posts: 1454
Joined: Thu Sep 12, 2013 6:40 pm
Location: Mount Clemens, MI / Hawks Nest, WV

Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:23 pm

The infamous 2013 Brooklyn Handicap. A standout losing effort for Percussion simply because he led the entire way into the stretch, and then was lassoed and cold cocked by a 10yo Calidoscopio who was running in an entirely different galaxy for most of the race. That is one race I'll never tire of watching. As a proponent of the War Horse, it still brings a smile to my face every time I see that old man storming down the stretch - in slop half a foot deep no less. And gotta love the look on Pletchers face, trying to digest what just happened.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=jeLqdEPEQ4I

WarBIscuit
"One horse-laugh is worth ten thousand syllogisms. It is not only more effective; it is also vastly more intelligent." H.L. Mencken
katmandu
Posts: 1192
Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 12:16 am

Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:58 pm

WarBiscuit wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:23 pm
The infamous 2013 Brooklyn Handicap. A standout losing effort for Percussion simply because he led the entire way into the stretch, and then was lassoed and cold cocked by a 10yo Calidoscopio who was running in an entirely different galaxy for most of the race. That is one race I'll never tire of watching. As a proponent of the War Horse, it still brings a smile to my face every time I see that old man storming down the stretch - in slop half a foot deep no less. And gotta love the look on Pletchers face, trying to digest what just happened.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=jeLqdEPEQ4I

WarBIscuit
And the old fellow still wanted to let the outrider's pony know who was boss after the race, lol.
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