Black Gold

Book Review: Black Gold Reminds Us Why We Breed, Race, and Dream

It was an era of controversial stewards' calls, late money affecting the odds before the break, and tracks facing increasing financial pressure from government. It was a time when criticism of short field sizes was rampant, breeding operations continued to take risks on untested sires, and when sugar horses--those who didn't run often in order to preserve their stamina--were seemingly everywhere. If that wasn't enough, the age witnessed the rise of the Kentucky Derby as an increasingly highly commercialized party, as debates raged over when Pimlico's Preakness Stakes should run....

[ Read More ]
Letter to the Editor: Pan Zareta & Black Gold

No matter what age we live in, every chapter of life is a bittersweet, hard-fought existence counting successes and failures and in the end our mortal or animal flesh returns to the soil for the next generation to continue the struggle. In the infield of the Fair Grounds, near the finish line, stand two markers commemorating struggles we cannot fathom in our modern life. Both Pan Zareta and Black Gold are heroically immortal and long-forgotten Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame members and remind us of the transition of our country...

[ Read More ]
Don't Bet On Most Accomplished Colt Being Favored in Derby

The Week in Review by T.D. Thornton Epicenter (Not This Time) is the first horse on this year's GI Kentucky Derby trail to arrive back in the proverbial clubhouse. His afternoon work is finished for the next six weeks, and he's earned his berth in America's most important horse race in a thoroughly professional manner that checks many of the boxes on the Derby desirability list. Epicenter's never-in-doubt dismantling of the GII Louisiana Derby field serves as a microcosm of his overall body of work: He's an adept breaker from...

[ Read More ]
This Side Up: Horses, Not Humans, Back At The Epicenter

First things first: let's give their chance to the guys off the bench. Okay, so there are going to be plenty of eyeballs rolled now that three of Bob Baffert's four Derby migrants are joining a former assistant, on the same circuit, with a total of 38 starters to his name this year—especially as it was the handling of another Baffert medication violation that reportedly caused the scuffle between this same gentleman and a fellow trainer at Clocker's Corner one morning last April. (Both were fined $500.) The wiseguys will...

[ Read More ]
This Side Up: Fostering a Sense of Legacy

Ours is the most nostalgic of sports, sustained by trusted cycles. And if the calendar pauses somewhat, between the end of the Triple Crown and the renewal of beloved summer rituals at Saratoga and Del Mar, that won't preclude an evocative resonance in some of the things we can enjoy Saturday. True, the idea that Letruska (Super Saver) is any kind of throwback, just because she is managing a second start in three weeks, is a measure of how effete the modern Thoroughbred has become. I've drawn attention previously to...

[ Read More ]

Never miss another story from the TDN

Click Here to sign up for a free subscription.