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PostPosted: Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:00 am 
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skeenan wrote:
I found these articles (and a Bloodhorse podcast interview about AP):
http://performancegenetics.com/the-stri ... cretariat/
https://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing ... stud-value

So, at the risk of sounding dumb, but want to ask... how would a horse be worse at an in-between distance of a mile and a 1/4, yet do well at a mile and an 1/8, and a mile and a 1/2? When I watched, I knew he was in trouble when Victor let him go around the last bend, and the explosive acceleration I was expecting didn't happen. But I wouldn't have attributed his difficulty with this race, to the race distance.

After the fact, I wondered how he would have fared, had the Zayats shipped him directly to Saratoga and he had three weeks to acclimate. Would it have made any difference, do you think? I have to believe his late arrival didn't do him any favors.

Hi Skeenan,
No question is a dumb question and given my premise that AP doesn't want the 1 1/4 mile distance, yet wins at 1 1/8th and 1 1/2 miles.... they are very valid questions. The whole thing with AP was his breeding on the dams side. It was far from distance oriented and kept me and a host of others off his bandwagon for a long time. It wasn't until I started to look at him to see why he could outrun his pedigree the way he did. In watching his training I saw that he had a long stride and barely touched the ground as he propelled himself forward with the lightest touch of the ground by his hoofs (allowing as well for his soundness). The mechanics and length of his stride, his demeanor and his ability to recover extraordinarily fast from his races is what I believe allowed him to outrun his pedigree. It was at this point, given my experience in horse racing and knowing the biases of the tracks he would encounter.....I suspected before he went the 1 1/4 distance of the Derby, that it would be the one race that could prevent him from winning the Triple Crown. His race in the Derby was certainly not one of his best races and I was certain after watching that race that his ability to disengage from his field as he pleased, was directly related to the very tough and demanding 1 1/4 mile distance. His race in the Travers allowed me to believe I was correct in that assessment. Of course opinions are always just that....but to see the same race out of him, at that same distance twice, was enough for me to suspect that distance is his Achilles heel.
All distance up to a mile and an eight, due to his amazing stride, speed and fast recovery are no problem for him. It was that one distance, 1 1/4 miles that prevents him from showing us the American Pharoah we have come to expect through the lane....both times he looked as if he was laboring through the final 1/8th of a mile, unable to disengage himself from the field. This is where I think the dams side just said enough is enough.
Now the tricky distance....the mile and a half. Belmont has long been know to carry speed horses going a 1 1/2 miles. There have been a number of upset winners who wired the field. AP was in great shape heading into the Belmont Stakes and Victor put him on the lead in fractions that he was very comfortable with....going the first 3/4's of a mile in 1:13.43 seconds. These fractions allowed AP to have at least 15 lengths in reserve as he easily goes 3/4's in 1:10. All he had to do from there is run another easy 3/4's of a mile to the wire, since he really wasn't using any of his speed which is what would cause AP to tire. For AP it was like a gallop....he went the first 3/4 's in 1:13.43 and his last 3/4's slightly faster...1:13.24 seconds allowing him to negotiate the mile and a half in 2:26.65 seconds without really being pressed under fast fractions that would cause him to tire. The mile and a quarter leaves no room for such slow fractions....it is a very serious distance and one of the toughest any horse will negotiate. It leaves him vulnerable that final 1/8th of a mile, because he had been under pressure throughout and that pressure takes its toll on Pahroah in the final 1/8th.
Don't get me wrong....this is just a simple conversation and by no means do I think Pharoah isn't a great racehorse. But he's different then other great ones....he overcame his breeding to become a Triple Crown Champion. I was hoping for the fairy tale ending and to see him win the Travers and the BC Classic. I do hope AP comes back and wins the BC Classic and I will happily eat crow....but under the circumstances I wonder if he will have enough time to get in a prep and make the BC Classic? Or would they attempt to run him off a 2 month layoff going a mile and a quarter?? TJ


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:08 am 
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Just saw that Baffert said AP will run in the BC Classic and will possibly have a prep before. That's good news, if he came out and said that already, he must have come out of the race very well. It also means no rest time for him, so he will be good and fit for a BC Classic run! TJ


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:29 pm 
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TJ wrote:
jagger wrote:
I would suggest reading Byron Rogers very interesting assessment of AP's performance on his Performance Genetics page. Very insightful.

Hi Jagger,
I'd like to read it...Got a link? TJ


Pretty sure this is what jagger had in mind-
The Travers – a study in pace and mechanical limitations


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:40 pm 
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Pan Zareta wrote:
TJ wrote:
jagger wrote:
I would suggest reading Byron Rogers very interesting assessment of AP's performance on his Performance Genetics page. Very insightful.

Hi Jagger,
I'd like to read it...Got a link? TJ


Pretty sure this is what jagger had in mind-
The Travers – a study in pace and mechanical limitations

Hi Pan,
Thanks for the link. TJ


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