Tuesday, June 17, 2008

10 Pounds Proved to be No Handicap for Curlin

I’ve been having a little trouble blogging on horse racing topics in a timely manner. The kids have commandeered the PC this summer since having discovered the many joys of YouTube.

Sophie: Hey, Alice, you gotta see this – the kid is playing the Star-Spangled Banner on a recorder through his nose!

Anyway, Curlin impressively won the Stephen Foster by 4 ¼ lengths, having been assigned to carry 128 pounds - 10 pounds more than any other horse in the field, thus giving jockey Robby Albarado a rare treat to enjoy a Starbucks Double Chocolaty Chip Frappuccino® Blended Crème (1,670,655 calories per serving) between the 9th and 10th races at Churchill Downs.

Of course, the purpose of varying weights is to equalize the competitors. The racing secretary assigns the weights according to his evaluation of the horse's ability to win, or the quantity of bourbon that's in his morning coffee. Bell'e saggio Francisco of That's Amore Stable observed that
Racing secretaries are loathe to pile on the pounds — because horses’ connections have more choices now of where, when, and under what conditions to run — even the slightest attempt to level the field sparks outrage among the connections.

So the racing secretary felt that an extra 10 pounds on Curlin would equalize the field and perhaps keep Curlin's connections from complaining. I mean, what's 10 pounds, anyway?

To put the weight in perspecitve, I have compiled a list of common items associated with 10 pounds,
    A baby
    A sack of flour
    A bag of groceries
    A salmon
    A cannonball
    A hairball removed from a woman’s stomach
    A lump of beeswax washed ashore on a beach in Oregon
    The weight of a 60 pound person if he were living on the moon
    The amount of weight I would have to lose in order to look good in a swimsuit

So Curlin dominated even with the additional 10 pounds. And now trainer Steve Asmussen is looking toward racing Curlin on the turf, with a possible start in the remowned Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, which is French for Really Impressive Horse Race Somewhere in France. This scenario makes perfect sense since I'm sure the next handicap race he'll be assigned to drag an anvil.


Frank said...

Hey, paesan'... grazie for the shout-out!

Geno said...

Now I know why it wasn't televised, it would have added another 10 lbs!

Anonymous said...

Maybe he was too busy looking for the press. He;s a ham, not a horse!