July 8, 2010

I am Impressed

Who has impressed me so far in 2010? Take a look…

1) Quality Road - February 6
The big bay’s win in the Donn was hands down the best performance of 2010. The 12 3/4 length win in the grade 1 race, garnered a monster Beyer of 121.

2) Eskendereya - February 20 & April 3
Take your pick. In the Fountain of Youth Eskendereya showed he was the most brilliant sophomore in the land, and in the Wood Memorial, he repeated the performance.

3) Zenyatta - June 13
After two good victories over lackluster fields to start the year, the Big Z showed her greatness once again, as she ran into a big performance by St Trinians in the Vanity, but inhaled her late as per usual.

4) Rachel Alexandra - June 12
Two narrow losses after her long layoff had the racing world buzzing about her demise. Not so fast my friends, her Fleur de Lis win was vintage Rachel Alexandra.

5) Concord Point - June 26
First try on dirt, and…wow! If the Iowa Derby is a true indication of this colt’s ability on dirt, then he may become a major force in the second half of 2010.

6) Blame - June 12
Carried less weight and ran a little than slower than Rachel did on the same day, but still his dogged rally on a speed favoring track in the Grade 1 Foster was very impressive and a great way to prepare for this Fall’s BC Classic.

7) Lookin at Lucky - March 13
Unlucky as usual, this classy colt’s first race of 2010 was racked with trouble, yet he still managed to run down the loose and formidable Noble’s Promise, to win this year’s Rebel Stakes like a true champion.

8) Boys at Tosconova - July 2
I am placing myself open for much criticism with this high rating, but that is how impressed I was with this juvenile son of Officer’s maiden win last week. Not sure what his future will hold, but this performance was absolute bigtime.

9) Majesticperfection - June 25
A sprint stakes at Iowa gets this one into the top 10? Yes, he defeated top sprinters and he did it such a way that you just know this horse is the real deal. He is 6f in 1:07.24 kinda fast.

10) Rail Trip - June 12
Bigger, better, and more mature, the California gelding may be ready to tackle the nation’s best, if he continues to look as impressive as he did in his effortless runaway in the Californian.

11) Exhi - June 27
Four straight stakes wins, and each one more impressive than the last, gets this striking sophomore a spot on this list vis a vis an eight length runaway in the Victoria Park Stakes.

12) Redding Colliery - May 31
Who? This late developing son of Mineshaft is a horse on the improve. His last effort in winning the Lone Star Handicap, by nearly seven lengths, earned a 111 Beyer, signaling him as one to watch.

13) Paddy O’ Prado - June 19
The top single performance by any turf horse was turned in by three-year-old Paddy O’Prado, in an alarmingly easy win in the Colonial Turf Cup. He should stay on turf after that performance.

14) Kantharos - July 3
Proving that the juvenile maiden win in the slop was no fluke, Kantharos made an absolute mockery of the Bashford Manor Stakes, and did it in racehorse time.

15) Hollywood Hit - May 9
Announced himself as the fastest thing going on a synthetic surface with a sharp win over Fatal Bullet in Woodbine’s Vigil Stakes. Any horse who runs 7f in 1:20 flat catches my attention.

16) Tuscan Evening - May 29
Her impressive win streak in stakes races continued in the Gamely, and in it, she proved her class by defeating a champion in Forever Together.


Susan said...

Quick Brian... Press that edit button, you forgot Trappe Shot, he can be # 17...

Brian Zipse said...

Not quite yet Susan, but...maybe after the Long Branch this Saturday???

Silent Sunday said...

One of my top performances this year would have to be General Quarters in the Woodford Reserve Turf...Not so much from a handicapping standpoint as he gave carried less weight than others, but a soft going that I didn't think he would like, a soft pace and after being headed split horses and kept fighting. It was enjoyable to see.

Brian Zipse said...

I actually gave strong consideration to his Woodford Reserve win Silent Sunday. If I had gone to 20, General Quarters would have made the cut.

Sami said...

Good article! Does anyone know were Kantharos will make his next start? i'm excited about him.

Brian Zipse said...

Look for him to run next in one of the juvenile stakes at Saratoga, Sami.

Mike said...

Brian....What about Qualitys Met Mile.Tied for Second fastest in the history of the 120 year of running the Met against some quality competition of a four month layoff.

Brian Zipse said...

Mike, What I actually did was only use the best performance for each horse, so the Donn qualified over the Met Mile. For Eskendereya, each of his last two were basically equal, and each put him in 2nd position.

tencentcielo said...

Good list Brian, though i think a couple of good one's got left off. My list

1, 2 & 3 are the same, in that order.
4. Blame in the Foster
5. Majesticperfection in the Iowa Sprint
6. Wasted Tears in the Honey Fox (in the race right after Esky's win in the FOY)
7. Life At Ten in the Phipps
8. Sidney's Candy in the San Vicente.
9. Paddy O'Prado in the Palm Beach S.
10. Hollywood Hit in the Vigil Stakes
11. Bourbon Bay in the San Juan Capistrano
12. Endorsement in the Sunland Derby
13. Rachel in the Fleur de Lis
14. Lucky in the Rebel
15. Acclamation in the Jim Murray
16. tie between Trappe Shot and Lady Giacomo

(I should note that i have NOT seen either Boys of Tosconova or Kantharos races enough times to make an opinion on them.)

Brian Zipse said...

Tencentcielo, Thank you for your ultimate participation! Now, to get down to business...You think Rachel of the Fleur de Lis would have been beaten by Life at Ten of the Ogden Phipps??? The Iowa Derby performance is not on your list???

tencentcielo said...

Iowa Derby did nothing for me. Sorry. It reminded me a lot of Sidney's Candy San Felipe win for some reason.

The Phipps was run around one-turn, so i have no clue how to turn that into a two-turn race. But L@10 took the lead, gave the "buh-bye" wave to Unbridled Elaine and kept going. Rachel probably would have crushed her, but L@10 was just more pleasing IMHO.

I hate Sidney's Candy with aplomb, so for him to be on my list says something. :-)

Brian Zipse said...

Not that Beyer's are the be all end all, but a comparison gives us some clue to the relative merit of each performance:

Sidney's Candy (San Vincente) - 95

Concord Point (Iowa Derby) - 107

Anonymous said...

Nice list. I have to give you credit for acknowledging Hollywood Hit. Only I would move his Vigil performance into the top 5.
He set all the fractions and the times of those fractions were all track records including the final time.
Unbelievable polytrack performance.

Chad said...

1. Quality Roads Donn
2. Majestic(midnight lute who?)perfections Iowa Sprint
3. Zenyattas Vanity
4. This is where my list ends

LDP said...

Every horse that should be on this list is on this list. I was surprised you didn't have Zen's Santa Margurita win on here, but can understand why you would rate her last higher. RA may still have a few little technical things to work out, like the head cocking, but I've learned most horses do if you give them a lot of time off. The thing is she is improving, and looked more like her old self in the FDL.

QR is the king of the house right now. I wonder if there is another colt, emphisis on the COLT, who can stay with him, at least at 9 furlongs.

Sami said...

Thanks Brian!

Charlie said...

You should have had comedero on your list here Brian, He's been behind at exactly 2 calls in his races this year. Made his competition look like 10k claimers for the most part. Pick a race Blue and gold at CT 3/10 off track record....Red Legend at CT Won Geared down by daylight.....Ultra impressive at pimlico in the chick lang. By the way his CT wins are 2 turn sprints starting point is just before turn 1.....not Ideal for sprinters not to mention the tight turns and short stetch arent condusive to a horse getting into his best stride and utilizing his speed. I dont have his beyers in front of me but im sure they were mid 90's - 100......and he didnt make the list?????

Brian Zipse said...

Very close, but not quite Charlie.