Todd Fincher Joins TDN Writer's Room Podcast

Todd Fincher | Coady

Todd Fincher, a standout on the New Mexico circuit, picked the perfect time and place to pick up his first Grade I win. His stable star Senor Buscador (Mineshaft), who was overdue to collect a big win, got the job done in the GI Saudi Cup. With a purse of $20 million, it is the richest Thoroughbred race in the world. Fincher joined this week's TDN Writers' Room podcast presented by Keeneland to discuss his popular horse, the reasons why he likes training in New Mexico, what are the prospects of a stallion career for Senor Buscador and more. Fincher was this week's Green Group Guest of the Week.

The margin was a nose. Did he know he had won and what made the difference this time?

“Just a little less bad luck is all that we really needed for this to happen,” Fincher said. “Because every time he puts himself in a terrible position. The Japanese jockey (Yuga Kawada, the rider Ushba Tesoro) really did a good job. He had me in a bad position for a long time. We didn't have anywhere to go. He had us in a bad spot, and we had to wait down the stretch. When that horse finally cleared us that was when we could move out and make our run. Junior (Alvarado) timed that perfectly. That's why we were so emotional. Because we never thought he was going to win until the last second, and we still didn't know if we won because the finish was so close.”

Senor Buscador will now head to Dubai for the GI Dubai World Cup. Run at a mile-and-a-quarter and around two turns, that race seems like a better fit for Senor Buscador than the one-turn, mile-and-an-eighth Saudi Cup. But Fincher said the real key to victory in Dubai will be whether or not the early pace is fast enough to set up his late run.

“He needs some kind of setup,” Fincher said. “I don't know why he does it, but he takes himself back right out of the gate. If you watch the Pegasus, he out broke National Treasure and then, three jumps later, he's four lengths behind him. So, he does that to himself and he's not going to change that style. And we can't change it. So, you're still going to need a pace because he's not going to get up there mid-pack and hang around. So, he needs an honest pace.”

Fincher has been training since the late nineties and has been the proverbial big fish in the small pond that is New Mexico racing. Does he ever see himself moving on to a tougher circuit?

“You have to have the horses to make a move like that and I just don't have them,” he said. “I have a ton of New Mexico breds. We break usually 30 to 50 horses a year, and 95% of them are New Mexico breds. Last year, we broke two Kentucky breds and one Louisiana bred, and the rest were New Mexico breds. So, it's not like I normally have the right horses to do it. But this year, we actually broke 15 Kentucky breds and a couple of Louisiana breds. So, we might have an opportunity to take a stable somewhere. But you can't go somewhere with two or three horses and set up a stable and think people are going to bring you horses”.

During the stallion spotlight segments of the podcast, the crew sang the praises of the WinStar stallion Improbable, who stands for $15,000, and the Coolmore stallion Tiz the Law, who stands for $20,000. His first crop are now 2-year-olds and will be hitting the track shortly.

Elsewhere on the podcast, which is also sponsored by WinStar Farm, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, Coolmorethe Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association, 1/ST Racing, West Point Thoroughbreds,, the team of Randy Moss, Bill Finley and Zoe Cadman reviewed the Saudi Cup, the GII Rebel S. and the GIII Honeybee Stakes at Oaklawn. They also looked ahead to this weekend's races, which will include major preps for the GI Kentucky Derby in the GII San Felipe S. at Santa Anita and the GII Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream. There was also a discussion of the Jeffrey Englehart story and whether or not HISA should expand its role so that it can oversee the sales.

To watch the Writers' Room, click here. To view the show as a podcast, click here.

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