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@ClearDonkey , I'm just a fan, I have no connection to breeding (though we do have some legit TB breeders here on HF), but my opinion: we are in a weird moment of seeing the impacts of "breed to sell" vs. "breed to race" showing up in the younger horses on the Derby path in their 2- and 3-yr old years. Sales value precocious young horses who are pushed hard early to peak with a Triple Crown race, or maybe a late summer classic, after which they will be retired for the breeding shed. Then they will get a good book in their first couple of crops because there's only possibility, not any crops of racing age on the ground to sully the dream that they can produce a precocious young horse to put on the Derby trail, rinse, repeat. So the horses we've seen winning contemporary Derbies have very "commercial" pedigrees- winning the race is great, but it's great because it add $$ to the stud fee later. I'm not saying the winners don't care about the glory and the touchy-feely stuff that comes with the Triple Crown, but I would cynically say it's about money as much as it's about sport.

These types of horses "bred out the wazoo" end up with a Baffert or a Pletcher because they are the trainers who have a system that maximizes the odds of getting a horse to peak in a Classic race, and it's sort of a tacit understanding that if you have success there, you're pretty much done with racing after that, because the real prize is a big stud fee as quickly as possible. That doesn't leave a lot of room for backing off a horse who needs time to grow, or who can't hold up to the pressure (mental or physical), or who needs a more customized program.

Every now and then you'll see a Graham Motion or a Barclay Tagg use a more horse-centric approach and come up with a big win, but they're not the guys winning 7 Derby titles.

Throw into the mix more owners who see their horses as "investments"- particularly in the breeding shed- you see a concentration of pedigrees that can fit into this type of program and then hold their value after a quick retirement.

So there you go, my 0.02 on the state of things in racing- worth exactly that, and maybe less ;)

For those who asked about Soup and Sandwich being eased, turns out he did have an issue but will be fine: Soup and Sandwich 'fine' after Kentucky Derby mishap
 

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@ClearDonkey , I don't know if it has so much to do with the high power breeding or not. What I do know is if a horse has the "want to" for anything they are the horse to get. I have always been a lover of grade horses and seem to always get one that fits my wants and has a good attitude. Only had one that didn't. Best horse I had was registered but, the one I'm training now is grade and I couldn't be happier on how she is coming along. Love it the most when the underdog wins at anything! By the way I only paid $600 for her as a yearling and I told Shirley after the race if I had only spent $400 more we could have had a Kentucky Derby winner.
 

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Discussion Starter · #103 ·
I have mentioned this before, but I am really thinks it fits. I was watching a PBS show- can't remember the name about history of horse racing. The two things that they mentioned really stuck out.

Along the way it became, like a lot of things in America, about specialization. That people no longer wanted to raise their horse, race their horses, and then bring them back home. It took to long. Winning in the sales ring became more important than the winners circle.

And yes winning in the breeding shed. Top sires make more in a week or less than winning a million dollar race.

And a side note- I remember a lot of talk about low cost/ not big pedigree with California Chrome. Now while don't think he as as great as he was made out to be, his pedigree wasn't that bad. And now this one. He has 2 Triple Crown winners, Storm Cat and AP Indy, - the female desirable Blushing Groom line, Unbridled, and Dynoformer( Barbaros sire)

It has become more of a ROI, investing type deal. Racing got a infusion of people during the financial crash. They brought that mentality. Wasn't hard to sell to people who weren't from generations of horse farmers. They basically created mutual funds.
 

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Wasn't hard to sell to people who weren't from generations of horse farmers. They basically created mutual funds.
Haha, this is absolutely the best way to put it. Gave me a chuckle.

You know what though, it did make me sad to see that there was a horse in Phipps silks trained by Pletcher and part of a three-way ownership group (I mean, them in with Repole? Seemed...odd). I guess because I grew up with them as the epitome of NY racing...They were a family of breeders and racers. Not horse farmers, but at least invested in nurturing their pedigrees over generations (of people and horses!). I know as the elder members of the family have died, its been harder for the current family to keep the stable going. Dynamic One couldn't be a more classic Phipps pedigree though: Dynamic One Pedigree Page
 

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Discussion Starter · #105 ·
@egrogan I think we are saying the same thing basically. They did have to have to actually feed and muck horses, but were involved over generations.

That pedigree - usually you want Dixland Union on the bottom. But it works .
 
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