Great Horse Racing Video Series – 2016 Breeders’ Cup Distaff

Beholder vs. 3yo Songbird in the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Distaff at Santa Anita, the Great Race Place.  I was fortunate enough to be there to witness this in person.

As one viewer stated, and I have to concur: “One of the greatest races I’ve ever seen. They’re both winners in my book!”

Great Horse Racing Videos – Chrome in the 2016 Pacific Classic

“California Chrome in a canter!” ~ announcer Trevor Denman

Kentucky Derby champion California Chrome smashes to victory in the 2016 Pacific Classic, defeating a solid Grade 1 field that included the super mare Beholder and the talented runner Dortmund.

Later this year California Chrome will attempt to become the first 5-year-old Thoroughbred to add the Breeders’ Cup Classic to a resume that includes the Kentucky Derby.   Derby winners who won the Classic are: 3yos Unbridled, American Pharoah and Sunday Silence, and 4yos Ferdinand and Alysheba.  It’s a difficult task and rare for an older horse to accomplish, especially since few Derby winners get to compete at an advanced age.

2016 Pacific Classic, Saturday August 20, 2016 at Del Mar



California Chrome, Tepin Among Plethora of Horse Racing Stars

California Chrome working out spring of 2014

2014 copyright Gary Tasich

 2016 Features an Incredible Group of Runners

Forgive the Thoroughbred racing fanbase if it emerged from the first half of 2016 utterly spoiled. Before the calendar could flip to summer, followers of the sport were treated to an overflow of talent from all ends of the spectrum, be it the sustained brilliance from established stars like California Chrome, Tepin and Beholder to the… [Read more…]

An Early Christmas for Horse Racing Fans

Handicapper Art ParkerBy Art Parker

If you play horses long enough you know it will happen. Unbeatable favorites adored by the public crashing to defeat on a major stage. Although the public was terribly disappointed in the defeat of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah in the Travers Stakes the result of that race reminds us of something far more important that Saratoga being the graveyard of favorites. It reminds us that at anytime, anywhere, the very best can go down to defeat.
But racing can also do the opposite. A race may result in a possible champion emerging, or a result that propels a serious challenger forward.
This August has provided both scenarios. First was the defeat of the invincible American Pharoah, in a race restricted to his own generation. The others came earlier in the month.


A female watched and waited to pounce on a grouper of older males, representatives of the toughest division in the game. Beholder not only defeated a group of older men, but she embarrassed the hell out of them. And the field included the defending Breeders’ Cup Classic Champion. All Beholder did was crush her opponents in the Grade One Pacific Classic at Del Mar by eight lengths and did little more than let out a yawn. When this year is reviewed and one uses the words “dominate performance” they better have the reel running of Beholder at Del Mar.

The other race was actually the earliest in the month and it didn’t confirm a horse as a champion – even though it may play a major role in determining the champ of the male handicap division. Honor Code, who put on a clinic of how to run others down in the Met Mile, showed that he is a true closing machine in the Grade One Whitney. What else would one expect from a horse with blood bluer than B.B. King’s Greatest Hits Album?


Two years ago Honor Code showed us what he could do as a baby in New York. I prayed that he would stay healthy for the Derby – I was one that wanted him to win since the Derby was one of the few marquee races left unclaimed by the get of the great A.P. Indy. Honor Code missed most of his three year old year but has come back and demonstrated what a great horse he really is. Shug McGaughey has done a terrific job at getting this one back into racing and orchestrating what may be a championship year. If there has been a heart pounding, thrilling race this year it was the Whitney. Honor Code, who is a terrific stallion prospect, showed what a great sustained runner he is.

So the table is set. I hope these three go in the Breeder’s Classic. I feel safe in saying that American Pharoah and Honor Code will be there if they are both healthy. Beholder has a spot locked up because of her win at Del Mar, but The Breeders' Cup at Keenelandtrainer Dick Mandella hasn’t decided what he will do with his champion mare. Just imagine a Classic with American Pharoah showing the way with Beholder getting closer at the top of the stretch, and both of them hear the ground shake when Honor Code turns on the afterburners. Who will win? The fans of racing, that’s who. I just can’t imagine a better Classic.


It’s closer than you think. This year I hope it comes October 31st, just the way I envision it.