Racing is connected in ways you will not find in other sports, involving families, immediate and extended; acquaintances that become friends over a lifetime, business relationships that extend from one racetrack to another, from one race meet to the next.
Trainers and owners, farriers and veterinarians, valets and their lieges, the riders; the agents, the racing office and its connection to nearly everyone. Bloodlines connect the sport’s athletes, the horses, from one generation to the next. There is much, much more, but you now have the general picture.
The dependency of one person upon the next is unmistakable. The dots are clearly connected. Even a racing card often has a thread connecting it to the previous one.
Saturday’s card certainly had a link to the past. The Human Cannonball, whose performance was wiped out by nasty weather two weeks ago, was back in action for the second consecutive year, demonstrating his proficiency at flying through the air into a net
The food trucks, 15 in all, made another appearance offering choices of turkey, tacos, East Indian items, pasties, pulled pork, deep-fried pickles _ pick your pleasure.
But we digress: Friday’s card presented race goers with an unusual result, four consecutive long-shot winners, at 10-1, 10-1, 13-1 and 16-1. Unusual enough to create questions about Saturday’s lineup that were answered immediately.
The card picked up on the same note, raising an obvious question and all sorts of betting speculation after Doug Frink rode My Streakin Runaway to victory at 330 yards for a payoff of $24.60. The pattern of the previous card seemed to continue.
Yet, race one was not the highlight of the card in respect to a handsome payoff. Eddie Martin, Jr., took the Valorie Lund-trained Love Makor to the winner’s circle at 15-1 in race five, providing a nice $33.60 return on a $2 wager.
Talk about linking the past and the present. How about this nugget:
Gordy Bredeson, who regularly ran his horses in Shakopee years ago, has not had a horse run at Canterbury Park since “about 2005,” he said.
Yet, there was Grand Stag in race six, with veteran Dave Van Winkle saddling him. Riding? None other than Seth Martinez.
“The last horse I ran here was ridden by Seth,” said Bredeson.
Talk about connections. Martinez, who has ridden regularly at Canterbury in previous years, wasn’t here for 2013t meet. He chuckled when Bredeson’s story was repeated to him. “Oh, yeah, I was here in 2005,” he recalled.
Who was here in 1985, on opening day, when the place named Canterbury Downs opened its doors? There was a dead heat for first that day, too, just as there was in Saturday’s seventh race.
Yeah, yeah. A real stretch but anyway.
Saturday, African Gray, ridden by Geovanni Franco, and Dontrattlemycage, ridden by Martin, Jr., dead-heated for first in race seven. On June 29, 1985, Patch of Sun and My Earl dead-heated for first in a stakes race. There have been a number of similar instances since, of course, but again, in the interest of connecting dots…
Race eight on Saturday provided another long-priced winner. Mogilny, at 11-1 provided rider Quincy Hamilton and trainer Phil Hartman with their second wins on the card.
Even paddock analyst Angela Hermann was perplexed by the pattern.
“I don’t know how to answer that. Has there been a series of full moons?” she wondered.
by Jim Wells