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SEATHESTARS....NO1
25 Jan 16 09:06
Joined:
Date Joined: 04 Oct 09
| Topic/replies: 4,537 | Blogger: SEATHESTARS....NO1's blog
There has been threads on here over the last few years from people with far superior knowledge than aye mentioning that this could happen in the coming years and what it will mean for horse racing and us antepost punters. I was dismissive of them then, but they seem to have been proven correct. It is a real shame in my opinion!

Imo, there should be a rule brought in that makes owners like Rich Ricci making them have to be made to spread his/their horses around different trainers when/if their registered owned reaches a certain number. J.P and other owners been doing this for years!
Pause Switch to Standard View Time for a new rule i think to combat...
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Report duffy January 26, 2016 2:27 PM GMT
cyclops

how is it out of order, don't be so touchy, it's an opinion that UDS could and should have run in the CH..simple as that.
Report The Headmaster January 26, 2016 2:28 PM GMT
It is ridiculous, STS, I'm afraid (going back to qualification).  You are comparing apples with oranges.  Race horses are fragile creatures, far more fragile than athletes.  Some bright marketing spark was trying to do similar a few years ago. He was using the analogy of F1 and how it was so great that everyone knew when the races were and who'd turn up etc etc.  The obvious difference is that if Lewis smashes into a wall in qualifying and needs a new wing they put one on there.  You can't do that with Faugheen.

The authorities did have a look at it.  Sensibly, it never made it past first base.
Report duffy January 26, 2016 2:29 PM GMT
slowerthanjohn
     26 Jan 16 14:21   

Why shouldn't they be allowed to separate them? To make you happy? 


To make the racing public at large more happy perhapsConfused
Report SEATHESTARS....NO1 January 26, 2016 2:30 PM GMT
no worries duffy Happy
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 2:32 PM GMT
So they shouldn't be allowed to separate them?
Report duffy January 26, 2016 2:33 PM GMT
Cheers STS.
Report duffy January 26, 2016 2:35 PM GMT
Yes they should be allowed too..just wish they wouldn't all the time. I think some owners haven't got their head around the notion that once beat doesn't mean they lose that aura, they are NH and are around for a good deal longer than top flat horses.
Report cyclops January 26, 2016 2:36 PM GMT
What I'm saying duffy is that its out of order to protest about "Mullins bullsh1t" when he hasn't said anything!
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 2:40 PM GMT
It's nothing to do with once beaten, everyone wants to win at Cheltenham and keeping Vautour, Faugheen apart in their novice season resulted in two wins which is better than one! Then last year Faugheen, Vautour and UDS resulted in three wins, hard to argue with that! But still you lot bleet!!!
Report rogerthebutler January 26, 2016 2:45 PM GMT
I think the 'bleeting' is simply a reaction to the hard-headed pragmatism with which the Mullins Machine operates, from those (fk it, 'of us') who want to see races we can go to our graves reminiscing over, in the greatest sporting arena in the world, cheered on by EVERY racegoer, rather than seeing remorseless efficiency ruthlessly executed.
Report rogerthebutler January 26, 2016 2:46 PM GMT
...and it's entirely Mullins and his owners prerogative to do as he see fits

....for the hard-of-thinking,
Report duffy January 26, 2016 2:49 PM GMT
I didn't mean he'd said anything, the avoidance of the CH through UDS being too headstrong and the detriment to the horses long term future, I think is rubbish. The fact that the horse is a keen going sort gave him a ready made angle to be able to miss the race and so doing gave his other horse a better chance of success, which it couldn't take.
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 3:00 PM GMT
Well I'm glad to be one of the hard of thinking, rather than one of do as pleases us!
Report rogerthebutler January 26, 2016 4:28 PM GMT
slowerthanjohn

My comment was a pre-emptive strike against those who equate a desire to see competitive racing with a questioning of Mullins' right to operate exactly as he and his owners wish (or worse, to see some external rule imposed to make it so).

Something you have never espoused.....but watch it!!WinkGrin
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 4:36 PM GMT
I could maybe accept UDS not running in the Churdle,had the reason be viable.
To give the reason as too weak,and at the same time send him to France.....twice,one of which was over 2 and a half miles!!and the only time in his career where he struggled to win, being a fair way out his comfort zone.Sure we all agree he's a 2 miler.
I'm afraid that just don't bring true as far as I am concerned. To run once over 2m in England at Cheltenham would have been easier for the horse,even in the Churdle,
And lets face it, his way of running would have meant that it mattered not one jot who was in the race as they would all have been behind him anyway.
Had they caught him and passed him and he showed he could not cope,he could have ben eased down once his race had gone.
Personally I don't think they would have got to him anyway, but alas we will never know.

I firmly believe he was campaigned to protect Hfly,and not one person,be it his trainer,his owner,or Joe Bloggs on here can make me think differently.

All about opinions,that's mine.

By the way.......anyone know why Faugheen never ran in the big irish races before his pretty comfortable Churdle victory? Anything to do with Hfly by any chance??
Report duffy January 26, 2016 4:38 PM GMT
^
That last point is a brilliant one and highlights the problem even better than the Fly/UDS one.
Report cyclops January 26, 2016 4:49 PM GMT
And why has Djakadam dodged the big races so far this season? Protecting Vautour? Don Poli?

Extraordinary arrogance, budd. The thought that you know UDS and what's good for him better than Mullins is laughable. On the verge of becoming the most dominant trainer in NH history (if he's not there already)and you don't care what he thinks or says because you're right.

Beating Gemix by a whisker in receipt of 8lbs showed what most of us suspected, and Mullins knew, that, fine horse though he is, he's no Champion Hurdler. End of.
Report impossible123 January 26, 2016 4:52 PM GMT
I think enough has been said on this topic; there has been some very good points made, for and against, and they are mostly reasonable and valid; let's move on and look ahead towards the races this weekend.
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 5:05 PM GMT
slower - of course my opinion is not fact - i am pretty sure that i posted that we dont know for sure what wpm was thinking - that is 100% acknowledging that i recognise my opinion is not fact - my reference to lie detector was further recognition that my opinion is just that an opinion as is yours -  obviously he is not going to take a lie detector test - i said only to illustrate the point that we will never know for sure You called me arrogant and cyclops called me ignorant - had i shown you similar disrespect i would accuse you of being gullible and lacking independent thinking for taking wpm at face value - i didnt do this for two reasons 1) that would be unfair and highly disrespectful to you and 2) i recognise your conviction is as strong as mine despite neither of us having proof and you are absolutely entitled to yours without being insulted. Not believing everything wpm says is not the same as thinking i know more than him - it just means i dont always believe him - so accuse me of a lack of trust but not arrogance - even geniuses and pioneers can be economoical with the truth at times.

I have noticed a trend on this forum that supporters of WPM are quick to get a little personal when others raise any viewpoint that in any way questions anything to do with WPM.  I see Budd used the term bonkers some posts back - i dont agree with that either - though i would say that reading his posts it is very rare for him to disrespect others. so slower/cyclops gl to you both, you both have huge admiration for the genius that is wpm and clearly trust him implicitly and sorry that my failure to demonstrate the same level of trust and the strength of my conviction upset you. 

I fully acknowledge that to change my opinion i would need proof which will not materialise - i sense that you and cyclops are the same with your conviction - totally respect that guys
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 5:09 PM GMT
Cyclops, like I said, not one person can convince me that hes been honest with us re UDS in his hurdling days.
Call it arrogance if yer like, I call it not believing what he said and using evidence to back that up.
The fact he knows his horses better than me is not the point.....not if he is telling porkies.

Cannot believe you have used the Gemix race to try and prove he could not be a Champion Hurdler....Willie would be so proud of you!!
Report duffy January 26, 2016 5:11 PM GMT
slowerGrin very good that
Report Autocue January 26, 2016 5:49 PM GMT
It's not just single trainer domination that's the issue, the so called bookies (nerds with laptops) squeezed the life out of the ante-post markets years ago. Which bookies back their own judgement nowadays like Fearless Freddie Williams used to do?
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 5:54 PM GMT
MS in an earlier post you said Please don't defend them you're missing the point!!! Seems pretty arrogant to me. The facts are I'm not a WM fan I just think in the last 3 years his whole operation has taken things to another level. But he still gets slated and the suggestion of lie detector?? I find that scandalous to be honest, he doesn't have to justify himself to anyone. Just because he won't run his best horses against each other.
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 6:07 PM GMT
Autocue you make a good point about the Ante post markets years ago you could only bet on the CH, GC, QM now as soon as they post the post they quote for next year. It's killed ante post betting, I remember backing Salsabil at 14-1 for the 1,000G after she'd won the Prix Marcel Boussac. Would the bookies offer that price about a filly winning it now? A horse such as Douvan wins 1-14 what do the bookies do? cut him, pathetic!
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 6:29 PM GMT
By the way.......anyone know why Faugheen never ran in the big irish races before his pretty comfortable Churdle victory? Anything to do with Hfly by any chance??

Yeah avoiding running them against each other to give them an overly hard preparation race before finally meeting in the CH and in the process winning two races instead of having 1st and 2nd in one! Pretty logical but doesn't please some of the racing public, boo hooCry
Report Eeternaloptimist January 26, 2016 7:01 PM GMT
Wasn't the UDS year the same year that many people marvelled at Annie Power's performance over 2 miles at Doncaster and who were desperate to see her take her chance in the champion? As it was many concluded she was outstayed in the stayers hurdle. So there isn't just the one question for Mullins about that particular Hurricane Fly race.
Report Eeternaloptimist January 26, 2016 7:02 PM GMT
I remember when I was a boy I used to run for a club and one thing my coach didn't like was what he called pothunters.
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 7:47 PM GMT
slower - you are right in an earlier post i did say dont defend because thats missing the point - trust me that wasnt arrogance - i could explain what i meant but i have lost the will to live and am fed up with you insulting me - so once again gl - i respect your opinion just dont share it
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 7:56 PM GMT
eternal - yes you are right - rp comment 'but what remains a clear fact is that she has a high cruising speed, one that means she surely wouldnt be disgraced if lining up for the CH - they went on to say the mares would be a shoo in if Q didnt make it - but obviously Q did and the rest is history
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 7:56 PM GMT
eternal - yes you are right - rp comment 'but what remains a clear fact is that she has a high cruising speed, one that means she surely wouldnt be disgraced if lining up for the CH - they went on to say the mares would be a shoo in if Q didnt make it - but obviously Q did and the rest is history
Report SEATHESTARS....NO1 January 26, 2016 8:07 PM GMT
This is my thread, end it now lol
Report penzance January 26, 2016 8:27 PM GMT
what right has someone got to tell an
owner,who pays heavy training fees,where
they  should have their horses trained?
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 8:29 PM GMT
Penzance don't be so ridiculous, a lot of people on here have the right toCrazy
Report rogerthebutler January 26, 2016 8:33 PM GMT
penzance
Joined: 26 Feb 04
Replies: 6970
    26 Jan 16 20:27   

what right has someone got to tell an
owner,who pays heavy training fees,where
they  should have their horses trained? 


None whatsoever - but to express an opinion, with sound justification.....?
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 8:43 PM GMT
But the point is even if RR wasn't allowed to have all his horses with WM it still wouldn't mean they would race against each other! RR would rather have 2 winners at Cheltenham than a 1st and 2nd.
Report wellchief January 26, 2016 8:45 PM GMT
How dare people question football managers. Many arm chair fans think they know better than Wenger, Klopp, Mourinho etc. How dare F1 fans question McLarens decision to use Honda engines? Do they know more about the sport and the company than Ron Dennis?

Racing is no different. Why is it OK to question decisions in other sports but apparently now when it comes to racing, the trainers word is gospel? We are not allowed to suggest a horse should run a different race?

Ridiculous.
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 8:48 PM GMT
Suggest away but till you pay the bills it don't mean s##t and don't all get upset because you don't get your dream race!
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 9:57 PM GMT
Personally think it great for people to show a passion for the sport.
Nowt wrong with hoping for great races,even if we know it's gonna be denied us.
Much rather that  then just settling for the way it is and the way it's heading imo.
Report firstimevisor January 26, 2016 10:05 PM GMT
UDS has always been a headcase with serious potential. Thankfully he's in the right hands and, step by step he's starting to show how good he is. His performance last weekend was a stone better than he was in Cheltenham and Punchestown last year and I have no doubt he was a better horse last year ( gradually learning to settle) than when hurdling in 2014. The decision (WPM said he never seriously considered it) to avoid Cheltenham was correct as beating Gemix a nose while receiving 8lbs wasn't a champion hurdle performance and it came a few weeks after Cheltenham.As always with him, the horse improved plenty for that experience.

Similarly with Faugheen, why would WPM have wanted to take on the Fly, but also the reigning champion Jezki at that time? Faugheen would have to have produced a champion hurdle winning performance, straight out of novice company, and with jumping issues when there were more sensible, easier grade 1s in the UK from which he could improve.

Reading through this thread it looks as though many have no idea of the work that goes into these horses and the rate of improvement that they can find over time when in the right hands.They don't just appear on the scene as the finished article, ready to take on the world. WPM is a genius imo, and until another trainer shows me a better way of training racehorses, I'm going to trust his judgement and his reasoning above all others.
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:08 PM GMT
Good for you, I trust you respect those that differ from your opinion though.
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 10:11 PM GMT
Firstimevisor please leave this thread for talking sense!

Very well said and couldn't agree with you more, you are seeing the bigger picture, which unfortunately some can't.
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:14 PM GMT
By the way ........you do realise the French  race was half a furlong longer than UDS proper distance? Only it sounds like you don't.
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:18 PM GMT
Starting to show how good he is?
That's quiet comical,he was doing that 3 years ago!!
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 10:20 PM GMT
budd why don't you start up training? RR would come running because you know more than WMCrazy
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:25 PM GMT
Now there's a thought!!
Report firstimevisor January 26, 2016 10:32 PM GMT
Buddilea, we know UDS ran on full throttle when he was hurdling, so its safe enough to assume his winning margins wouldn't have been much more if ridden out.So tell me on what basis you believe he'd have won the 2014 champion hurdle? He'd have been swallowed up at the second last!
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:40 PM GMT
Oh I am not sure he would have won the race,but I am as sure as I can be that he deserved to run in the race.
My gut feeling is they would not have got to him,but that is obviously open to a fair amount of question.
Just seeing him from the front the way he ran his races then,that would have been something......win or lose.

It's my biggest enjoyment in the sport, front running champion hurdlers playing catch me if you can,it don't come along very often.
I felt cheated.
Report wellchief January 26, 2016 10:40 PM GMT
That's a massive assumption to assume UDS had nothing left at the end of his hurdle races, I find it quite bizzare you think if he was pushed all the way to the line the winning margin would be the same, ie a complete bridle horse.

If you genuinely think he'd get swallowed up at the second last then that's your opinion. Budd thinks he might have won. That's his opinion. You know what would have sorted this? If he'd ran in it!!!
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 10:42 PM GMT
So budd you must have enjoyed Faugheen last year? Only a year late.
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:44 PM GMT
oh I think he showed in France that he is far from a bridle horse Chief.

Whatever your view, I don't see how anyone could not have wanted him in the CHurdle.......I mean why ever not??
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 10:47 PM GMT
Because the horse was a work in progress and it probably would have to been to his detriment.

He settles a lot better now and therefore will find more off the bridle, not rocket scienceWink
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:47 PM GMT
Faugheen is not the same style of front runner though,but yes he's enjoyable to watch.
Sunday was electric.
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 10:49 PM GMT
Plus Faugheen would have used UDS as a pacemaker.
Report firstimevisor January 26, 2016 10:51 PM GMT
Fair enough, all anyone has is an opinion. But when a horse goes flat to the boards and there's nothing a jockey can do to settle him then the horse is doing too much on the bridle and therefore is not going to find much off the bridle because there is nothing more to give. Sure he was mighty impressive in those mickey mouse races but when he met a decent horse for the first time( getting 8lbs), once he came off the bridle there was zilch under the bonnet.
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 10:51 PM GMT
willie mullins quote 12th Jan 2014 after Navan - it looks like we'll go to the champion hurdle with him..... unless he was lying sounds like he was seriously considering it to me but hey maybe because im not a wordsmith i am not qualified to have an opinion about what he meant.
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:53 PM GMT
Watch the race in France and then come back on here and tell me he did not find off the bridle.
The race over 3 furlongs more than his ideal.
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 10:54 PM GMT
Oh no the lie detector is out again!!!

They must be have missed out the rest of the quote

but I won't run him in case he beats HF.
Report buddeliea January 26, 2016 10:56 PM GMT
John,
No disrespect meant.......but how old are you?
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 10:58 PM GMT
Could also be said the trip was on the short side for Gemix.
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 10:59 PM GMT
certainly past his bed time i reckon
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 11:01 PM GMT
Certainly, very condescending but I'm not the one who wanted to put WM on a lie detector!!
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 11:08 PM GMT
i am truly sorry for mentioning the lie detector - i hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me - i so want us to be friends -  you sound like such a balanced and well adjusted person and i feel i could learn so much from you - please say we are still friends
Report wellchief January 26, 2016 11:11 PM GMT
John, I understand that you are new to the forum, and I'm sure you're a very nice person but you are coming across like a bit of a bellend.

Just an observation.
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 11:15 PM GMT
Oh really thank you that would be marvellous, I very much doubt I could teach you anything as you seem to know everything. Apart from not calling someone a liar, which is very disrespectful.

Unless I agree with you, I'm not balanced or well adjusted? Thank God for that!
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 11:16 PM GMT
Thanks WC
Report wellchief January 26, 2016 11:17 PM GMT
Any time Laugh
Report slowerthanjohn January 26, 2016 11:19 PM GMT
Note to self don't be a bellend, agree with WC,MS, STS and I will be a much better bellend
Report miltons sophie January 26, 2016 11:50 PM GMT
slower - seriously - i have tried to shake hands and move on more than once in earlier posts - once again i wish you good luck - i am sure you know a hell of a lot about racing and like every other punter i hope you beat the bookies in march.
Report timtin January 27, 2016 12:01 AM GMT
wtf 5 pages of discussing Mullins protectionism towards his beloved HF. Of course UDS should've run in the damn CH, same as AP. Course Faugheen should've run in the Irish CH last year, he needed a prep run for the CH anyway and beat those two comfortably just 2 months later so talks about F being a novice are hilarious. Once his love HF retired everything opened as we've seen Sunday when he put all of them in the same race. He'll do the same in the GC if Ruby will want to ride Vautour and Djakadam puts a not so convincing performance next Saturday, he'll put all 3 in the GC with no bother. Thing is Vautour didn't looked of having more to offer in the KG and he's young enough to skip it this year and return in following seasons which is more logical even for someone that is not a trainer.

I also don't think people really understand what competition means. If Douvan was kept hurdling, the only way in people mind the CH was going to be competitive would've been if F and D never met until the day, otherwise if D had been in on Sunday the same uncompetitiveness feeling would've been present for the CH. Thats how Mullins creates superstars - it keeps his horses apart - which means each horse has its own fan machine - and are allowed to dream - that they'll beat Faugheen
it started with Vautour
continued with Douvan
brassneck was appalled, that I forgot the Power
who would apparently beat Faugheen
any day of the week
next year will be the same
but with a different name
all anti-Mullins choir will yell
'Send Min against Faugheen'
only once Min gets beat, his fans will finally perceive
there was no real clash which involved The Machine

End oF. Happy 15 minutes Laugh
Report Eeternaloptimist January 27, 2016 12:38 AM GMT
But the point is even if RR wasn't allowed to have all his horses with WM it still wouldn't mean they would race against each other! RR would rather have 2 winners at Cheltenham than a 1st and 2nd.


There would be a far greater chance of the kind of races people are clamouring for if Ricci had his horses spread about slower. As it is Mullins will have a very good handle on which one is likely to emerge on top and/or which may eke out their stamina so they get an extra half mile so he can have two bites at the cherry. If Ricci had two outstanding candidates for a championship race in different stables then it is quite feasible that each stable would make the case for their horse being the better equipped for the race and he may be more inclined to allow the issue to be settled on the track.
Report duffy January 27, 2016 1:53 AM GMT
It's already started, the chat, threads like this one, people are questioning why the horses aren't pitched in more against one another.

As the Mullins/ Ricci domination continues this chat will grow and grow, it will spill more and more into the racing press, then pundits and interviewers will begin to ask the questions more and more.

When asked, the Walsh's/Mullins/Ricci's will be heard to heave huge sighs of dismay at why it is their horses no longer receive the adulation they once enjoyed and wonder why we are no longer fawning over what has become the norm and dare I say it boring repetitiveness!

As the antepost market begins to prohibit any sort of investment on a Mullins horse and with less and less people enjoying a financial interest in the Mullins battalions there finally comes a time where the fairy story that was coneygree and sire de grugy is represented in the general publics eyes by "the field" against every Mullins hotpot.

We're not there yet, but as with all domination we ultimately begin to turn on it and root for the opposite to happen.
Report duffy January 27, 2016 2:11 AM GMT
Hopefully, the bottle neck that Mullins is going to begin to see year on year will sort the problem out all by itself as more and more horses will be needing races to run in, he'll have a taste of this next year with Douvan for starters

We don't want to start to hear things like such and such, although winning his festival race by 10 lengths hard on the snaff last year, actually didn't enjoy himself so I'm keeping him back for Punchestown this year. Wink
Report SEATHESTARS....NO1 January 27, 2016 8:36 AM GMT
Eeternaloptimist 27 Jan 16 00:38 Joined: 28 Jun 10 | Topic/replies: 35,941 | Blogger: Eeternaloptimist's blog
But the point is even if RR wasn't allowed to have all his horses with WM it still wouldn't mean they would race against each other! RR would rather have 2 winners at Cheltenham than a 1st and 2nd.


There would be a far greater chance of the kind of races people are clamouring for if Ricci had his horses spread about slower. As it is Mullins will have a very good handle on which one is likely to emerge on top and/or which may eke out their stamina so they get an extra half mile so he can have two bites at the cherry. If Ricci had two outstanding candidates for a championship race in different stables then it is quite feasible that each stable would make the case for their horse being the better equipped for the race and he may be more inclined to allow the issue to be settled on the track.


Exactly my point Eeternaloptimist, thank you for posting. However getting a bit out of hand this debate now i think.
Report SEATHESTARS....NO1 January 27, 2016 8:40 AM GMT
I think they will step Douvan up in trip with a view to the CGC next season duffy. Even now you won't get huge odds for Douvan 2017 CGC though admittedly i don't know what they are, there is nothing on oddschecker yet that i can see but there is a Douvan to win the 2017 QMCC and its only 3/1Shocked
Report duffy January 27, 2016 8:48 AM GMT
STS

I reckon the Vautour debate we're having this year will next year be replaced by a Douvan one, it's what I was meaning by the Mullins bottle neck, within a couple more years there won't be anywhere for him to turn to avoid stablemates unless some miss the festival altogether.
Report duffy January 27, 2016 8:53 AM GMT
They'll have to start to think about let's say if Min wins the supreme to keeping him hurdling for another season to back up Faugheen rather than adding to the stock pile of chasers they'd have. I know we're getting ahead of ourselves but all these things will happen with the Mullins bandwagon only gaining more and more momentum.
Report GAZO January 27, 2016 8:59 AM GMT
wouldnt it be nice to aim vautour and douvan at the ryanair first,the race is here to stay so if you can get top horses to run in it,it might eventually become a true championship race instead of the also ran race
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 9:19 AM GMT
There was an intersting article in the RP today talking about how irish racing is being dominated by so few (giggi,RR, JP) much more than has ever been the case in racings history and the negative impact they think this is already starting to have. Attendance sunday for the CH/Arkle was down 10% on previous year despite the weather (according to rp) being ok and despite two superstars running. Bookmaker turnover is down despite positive economic indicators, overall (flat + jumps) number of entries is down 7% in just one year, number of runners down 4%,horses in training down, number of owners down and number of new owners down - what is even more worrying about the last 3 stats (#horses in training, owners and new owners) on the flat is actually increasing so the numbers for jumps are declining significantly. All these things are happening despite an almost 10% increase in prize money. Bottom line all the prize money is going to a select few more than in any time in jump racing history. Personally i think some of these numbers would be dramatically worse if Gggi didnt chose to run their horses against each other. If we hadnt sussed it already the future of jumps racing, particularly in ireland is in the hands of a very small number of people so it should come as no surprise to anyone if the decisions those few make become the subject of peoples interest and scrutiny. I am not criticising anyone, just pointing out that there are always unintended consequences when so much power is in the hands of so few and that every decision those few make can have either a positive or negative decision on racing as a whole.

On the plus side we have lots of great horses, so i imagine the ratio of high rated to low rated horses is going more in the favour of quality over quantity but this HAS to drive increase in attendances particularly at the showcase meetings. It didnt on sunday - i have my own guess as to why but that would be conjecture on my part - others may know for sure  - but i think it is important to recognise that the more the people in power in irish racing focus on quality the more essential competitiveness will become.

This for me is why the best running against the best irrespective of who they are owned by (and however understandable it may be when they dont) is one of the few topics that really resonates with me and why my feelings are not remotely personal to any individual but more thinking of the sport in general.
Report duffy January 27, 2016 9:35 AM GMT
I think Ricci suffers somewhat from protecting the aura surrounding his horses, he can't get his head around the fact that if one or another gets beat from time to time it doesn't necessarily mean that that horse will lose some of it's stature from it, quite the opposite would be true IMO, this is NH racing and these horses are around for a few years with a bit of luck, he's not in charge of a 3 year old that he's nursing toward a stud career.

Just imagine for a moment if Ricci started to take his own horses on as a matter of course and when interviewed he said something along the lines of:

I love my horses but I also love the sport of NH racing and I believe I have a duty to supply the best possible entertainment to the racing public. I want my horses to race against each other and create memories that people talk about for years to come

Pie in the sky and a bit sentimental I know, but with one stroke he would be hailed a racing hero and we'd all love him for it.
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 9:48 AM GMT
duffy - do i have an identical twin i didnt know about Laugh
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 9:51 AM GMT
i actually think that at some point notches on the bed post will not have the same appeal for him and i actually believe his thinking(or rather feeling) will evolve over time - bit like the lothario that suddenly finds true love
Report Desmond Orchard January 27, 2016 9:51 AM GMT
I know it's not the popular group-think, but outside of the two mares, what match ups are we missing this year?
Indeed, there are plenty on here who think Vautour should be in the Ryanair, rather than taking on the same owners Djakadam in the CGC. Some even argue both sides of the debate.
I accept that UDS and even AP should've run in that CHurdle and agree that they were desperate to get a third victory for the Fly - given his dominance over Jezki and OC throughout that season they had every reason to think it likely. I'd've also preferred to have seen Vautour in the Arkle, but that's only because I'm not yet in love with the JLT - there's little doubt in my mind he is more effective over further than the minimum.
But they're considering giving us the potentially the best CGC since Denman and Kauto locked horns, rather than taking the penalty kick that the Ryanair would be. Credit where credit is due?
Report timtin January 27, 2016 9:54 AM GMT

Jan 27, 2016 -- 3:48AM, miltons sophie wrote:


duffy - do i have an identical twin i didnt know about


Laugh just imagine for a second how @duffy and @miltons sophie meet RR 'oh no you didn't just put ALL your horses in a single race!!! we love you Richard!! We want you to be our adoptive father!!'

Report timtin January 27, 2016 10:03 AM GMT
I agree @Desmond I think they're trying to find reasons to leave both Djak and Vautour in the GC which is a mistake because the latter is best suited to 2 and half and seemed to have nothing left over 3 in the KG. It would create a temporary suspense but I think Vautour fans will be disappointed if and when he'll drop out around 3 mile mark and with hindsight they might not really appreciate RR's / WPM move instead of waiting for another year to put him in the big one. Cue Card, Don Cossack they followed this Ryanair route and its nothing wrong with it. Stamina becomes more prominent in horses over time and in another year the GC trip might be his best.
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 10:34 AM GMT
DO - you are correct some agree with the strategy and some dont- that is why its divisive and not about who is right and who is wrong - it is about acknowledging that some are great with how things are k and some have concerns and want it to cahnge - all of that is absolutely fine if both sides acknowledge both camps - and more importantly if keeping the best apart as a strategy or not having enough highly competitive races through the season (not just cheltenham) doesnt have any negative implications to racing as a whole.

But if enough people dont like it and enough races become uncompetitive it may have a detrimental effect. Re this years match ups - it is the strategy that some poeple are wanting to be different - some years based on the make up of their horses the impact will be less and some years it will be greater - and some years will be impacted by decisions made the previous year or pre season - hypothetically what if Douvan hadnt schooled well over fences - what would you have wanted them to do with him this year? move him or faugheen straight to the world hurdle or see them race each other in the ch (british or irish) - some would prefer the former some would prefer the latter.The point is which strategy the really powerful owners/trainers deploys has a massive influence over the total landscape.

Re vautour and Djak - i will applaud this IF it happens - i wonder how much of it is illustrative of a change of strategy on the owners part and how much is a one off driven by the trainers burning desire to win that race which is slightly different when thinking of how the strategy will be executed moving forward. My hope is that they will both run and despite hurting my pocket they finish 1 and 2 and the owner feels something unique and beyond anything he has ever felt even though he may have sacrificed winning the ryanair, and once he sees how he has helped create history in a different way to before he will get a taste for it.
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 10:37 AM GMT
apologies timtin - it was just a different way to say i agree - appreciate the ridicule
Report Desmond Orchard January 27, 2016 11:05 AM GMT
Hold on Miltons, you can't be using the hypothetical situation of Douvan not schooling well to suggest that he wouldn't have faced Faugheen in the Champion. He did school well, so not only is the point entirely moot, you have no idea what their strategy would've been in that instance. I'm no apologist for WPM and RR and have stated above that I would've preferred them to have made a couple of different decisions, but I'm not seeing the problem this year at all.
I'm also not entirely certain that all of this years supposed good things are as good as people are assuming - which was the point of the OP rather than the unwillingness (or otherwise) of RR to run his horses against each other. Faugheen faces a moderate bunch so obviously will be hard to beat and whichever mare they send should oblige (although we all remember last year), but Douvan and Min won't have faced anything like the strength of field that they will in March and UDS isn't always sure-footed. Of the 5 'bankers', I could easily see only a couple winning - which would still be a great return, it's The Festival after all! It was only a couple of weeks ago people were talking about the near certainty of a WPM 1-2-3 in the CHurdle, lots can change.
Report impossible123 January 27, 2016 12:00 PM GMT
This is what RR apparently told Lydia Hislop just recently after the majestic performance of Faugheen: "I keep noting that my trainer keeps saying I'm very keen to run. I'm always keen to run. I was keen to run last year against other horses," he said, meaning against Hurricane Fly.
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 12:22 PM GMT
DO - i dont think i explained myself very well - i only mentioned the douvan / faugheen thing solely to illustrate that how many match ups we miss in a given year will be circumstantial unless they change their strategy - so the fact we are not missing many this year is not because of a change in strategy but just circumstance - and a change to circumstance (for example Douvan not taking to fences would mean another missed match up if the strategy stays as is) - Also because we are not missing many match ups this year doesnt mean we cannot have the foresight to recognise the potential to miss match ups in the future if the strategy doesnt change - (or the rest of the racing calendar for people that dont think chelt is the be all and end all of racing). The wpm /rr strategy imo is to win as many races as possible - so if douvan had failed to take to fences they would have had a decision to make this year re douvan. If they kept to their strategy - i.e. to win as many chelt races as possible the only way they could have done that would be to run one in CH and one in WH. Anything other than that would require a change of strategy which many of us are hoping for but not expecting.

Yes he took to fences so they didnt have to make the decision - many of us think (obviously dont know) that if they had this decision to make, based on their track record to date that they would have avoided each other moving forward. It is imo not a difficult scenario to imagine as not all excellent novice hurdlers take to chasing so it is not a leap of faith to imagine these connection having the same sort of decision on a regular basis in the future.

i was going to respond to your other point supposed good things OP e.t.c.  but i have already rambled on enough and seem incapable of getting my thoughts down with clarity.
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 12:24 PM GMT
should say 'some' not 'many' as i have no idea how many
Report Desmond Orchard January 27, 2016 1:34 PM GMT
I don't know Miltons. Running with your hypothetical situation....... Douvan looks an out and out two miler to me and in no way suitable for the WH. Faugheen is different, but as the defending champ and potentially the best 2m hurdler we've seen in 15 years, perhaps longer, it would be a stretch to think that he wouldn't be given the opportunity to fulfil his expected legacy. I'm guessing, as are you, but think in that situation they would've run against each other.
Hypothetical scenarios aside, you've acknowledged that there isn't too much of a problem this year and other than the two (just two) previously mentioned cases, one in each of the last two festivals, I don't see a huge weight of evidence to suggest that the festivals status as the pinnacle of the sport from a fans perspective is in too much danger.
Besides, it'll pass. If history shows us anything, dominance in any sport is short-lived, competitors raise their game.
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 3:17 PM GMT
DO - you possibly have not read all posts on this (and i wouldnt blame you Laugh - but more than two previous examples on different posts and on different threads have been raised by people not just ap and uds missing ch - and if you think of this on a rate basis rather than a volume basis things can look a little different. In other words the opportunity for really exciting match ups is very rare - so just missing out on a fairly small number can mean a lot on a rate basis.

I have been paid by my employers not just to focus on how things have been done in the past  or on the here and now but to be future focused and try and anticipate / predict future events, pit falls/ opportunities - not only is it how i am wired but also how i have actually executed my reality. It has been proven that approx 45% of people focus on the past as the basis of their current reality, approx 40% on the here and now and only 15% are future focused. I constantly find myself in a position where i am told thats not been a problem before or i dont see thats a big problem now - often when you touch a nerve people can get quite defensive and hit out - but occasionally, just occasionally people that are more future focused can extrapolate to the future quite successfully and prevent problems and alter what the future looks like. When i read the OP's opening sentence this resonated. Sometimes, often even, nothing comes of it but my experience is that even the contemplation and debate can lead to changes that minimise future risk or unlock future opportunity.

On something like this - the future of racing, chelt e.t.c.  people like us can do nothing constructive at all, i think it is this sense of helplessness that means I end up extroverting these thoughts in a medium like this where lets face it, nothing is going to come of it. Some might agree some might repectfully disagree and some might send a few insults my way - whatever nothing significant will happen.

I would love to understand how the likes of WPM, Giggi, RR, JP are thinking about the future of racing and how they align this with their own personal ambitions within racing and i would love to see the real power people in racing help us understand how they plan to use their power to safeguard or improve the future as well as enjoy the here and now. 

And if i have offended or angered anybody in this post in any way i apologise, its not my intention
Report Desmond Orchard January 27, 2016 3:44 PM GMT
I've had another flick thru Miltons, and aside from UDs in the Champion Hurdle (at length) and AP in the same race, the only other quibble was Vautour not running in the Arkle - which was by me!
On the other side of the coin we have WPM running his three best 2m hurdlers against each other at the weekend and the increasing likelihood of a Gold Cup to savour. Which suggests that it's not a strict policy at all, perhaps just a preference in certain circumstances? Which wouldn't be limited to WPM/RR, by the way, plenty of trainers have dodged horse from other yards that they didn't think they could beat - perhaps its as simple as that, particularly as being in the same barn can afford connections a clearer indication of the relative merits of the beasts in question.
I don't doubt your credentials, by the way, and have no particular affinity for Mullins and Ricci, other than the assumption that their charges are already home and hosed provides value elsewhere - long may that continue!
I also agree that griping on here about it is probably futile, so hope that time proves me to be right, rather than you!
Report duffy January 27, 2016 3:50 PM GMT
The issue will become more and more obvious year on year, as the amount of race options remain the same but his stock pile of talent grows.
Report Desmond Orchard January 27, 2016 4:03 PM GMT
They don't hang around for ever Duffy, particularly these French breds. A couple of seasons out of novice company and then the downgrade starts.
Besides, if the number of races remains the same (probably won't happen, 5 days anyone?), then he will have to run them against each other - whether he likes to or not.
Also, you never know how long a RR will stay in the game. He might be worth £100m, but I bet that's taken a kicking these last few months and that's certainly not a bottomless pit if you're spending £5m -£10m a year on new horses, plus all the ancillaries.
Maybe someone else with deep pockets will come along, or someone else will start getting lucky and buying the right horses?
I'm pretty sure the Festival will still be going strong long after Messrs Mullins and Ricci have drawn stumps.
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 4:22 PM GMT
agree DO but one of the phrases that always resonated with me is hope (or maybe) is not a strategy - which comes back to the futility of it. Hey ho despite everything i cant wait for march and like you am hoping we wont just see great individual performances but also MANY epic battles as well
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 4:22 PM GMT
agree DO but one of the phrases that always resonated with me is hope (or maybe) is not a strategy - which comes back to the futility of it. Hey ho despite everything i cant wait for march and like you am hoping we wont just see great individual performances but also MANY epic battles as well
Report miltons sophie January 27, 2016 4:25 PM GMT
what would be interesting is if connections start campaigning for a 2 1/2 mile senior championship hurdle race at chelt.
Report GAZO January 27, 2016 5:52 PM GMT
if or when it goes to 5 days that race is almost a certainty
Report penzance January 27, 2016 7:54 PM GMT
STS
Good thread,got people talking about
racing.
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