All American Derby estimated at $2.8 million
A press release on the AQHA website has announced that the 2013 All American Derby's purse has been estimated at $2.8 million, making it the richest race in the history of Quarter Horse racing. It's also interesting as this will be the first time ever that the All American Derby will have a greater purse than the All American Futurity, which is estimated at $2.6 million. Ruidoso Downs is the only racetrack in North America with 2 races worth more than $2 million on their annual stakes schedule. I believe this is an attempt by Ruidoso Downs to make their racing more "mainstream" by making a Derby their greatest race, as opposed to a Futurity. I have nothing to base that on, I'm just going to say that.
Gary Stevens has anger issues
Hall of Fame rider Gary Stevens was unhappy when blogger, journalist and horseplayer Adam Hickman posted this tweet after Stevens, to the surprise of many, sent Proud Strike to the front in the Risen Star at Fair Grounds:
That might be dumbest ride of @hrtvgary's comeback.Stevens was clearly unhappy, later responding:
— Adam Hickman (@ahickman2) February 23, 2013
@ahickman2 I got balls and guts #douch. You don't deserve a response but I wanted to. Go to bed and think about that.Twitter immediately went up in a firestorm of people either taking Stevens' side, claiming that Hickman has no right to criticize a Hall of Fame Rider, or people who clearly understood that Stevens messed up.
— Gary Stevens (@HRTVGary) February 24, 2013
But this shows a whole new dark side of Gary Stevens, the angry egotist who can't handle criticism, and will be put into a terrible rage when his methods are questioned. Adam should be happy he didn't say anything to Stevens' face, he may not have survived if he did. Also, Gary Stevens has some issues with Grade 3 level spelling.
Quarter Horse blogger wins handicapping contest
Fans of Quarter Horse blogger L. Doug McPherson, A.K.A me, were put into tears of joy when they found out that he won the http://www.danonymousracing.com/ handicapping contest of the Stakes races from Fair Grounds and Gulfstream on Saturday. I want to thank Danonymous Racing, and encourage everyone to play his free contest. He holds them every weekend, they're free to play and very fun. Also, follow Danonymous on Twitter at @DanonymousMan.
Zia Park Quarter Horse Championship earns berth to Champion of Champions
Los Alamitos has made a wise decision, giving the Grade I Zia Park Quarter Horse Championship winner a berth to the Grade I Champion of Champions, replacing the Refrigerator Handicap. This makes sense as the Zia Park Championship is an invitational race that collects a higher quality field than the Refrigerator. Los Alamitos fans can looks forward to seeing one more actual Champion in the Champion of Champions this year.
Todd Pletcher is a big baby
Todd Pletcher has secured a nomination for the "biggest baby in racing" award. Ray Paulick tweeted this dandy Pletcher quote on Sunday afternoon:
Todd Pletcher after Violence lost to Orb in Fountain of Youth. "...looks like Orb has really improved with Lasix." #performanceenhancingReally, Todd? You're implying that Lasix, a drug that almost every horse at every bush track who couldn't win for $2,000 runs on, is the reason that Orb won the Fountain of Youth? Give me a break, Todd. I do feel bad about Violence's injury and the fact that his career is likely over, but just accept it Todd. You weren't the best here. And one more thing: Violence raced on Lasix too.
— Ray Paulick (@raypaulick) February 24, 2013
It's been a fun weekend, very fun indeed. Let's hope for some more interesting stuff next weekend.