Tag Archives: Churchill Downs


howboutdemapples and manasota sunset duel: arlin report | ARLIN  REPORT……………….walking this path together

This little girl of mine, for awhile anyway! The lead horse in the photo is Howboutdemapples, a two year old daughter of 2X Breeder’s Cup Classic Champion Tiznow. For a little over a year I owned a couple of microshares in “Apples” (as we the shareholders called her). On Wednesday, she was entered into a $50,000 Maiden Claiming race with a purse for $58,000. “Apples” came in 3rd, she was the 2nd favorite, but she was Rocket Ship Racing, LLC’s favorite; as they put the claim in for her. As soon as the race was over Jeff Hile’s (her new trainer) team walked over and picked up “Apples” to take to her new stable. I am no longer a microshare owner of this beautiful filly. All it took was another racing group to drop a ticket with their name and the horse’s name they were claiming into the claiming box in the racing office at the track (Churchill Downs) 10 minutes before the race (the $50,000 claiming amount is withdrawn from the claiming group’s account at the track) and bingo, they have a new horse to work with.

As a microshare holder with MyRaceHorse.com, we the share holders have no say in how the horse is managed. I get that, in this particular horse there were 600 microshares sold (approx. 300 of us held one or more shares). Here is my gripe: Howboutdemapples is only a two year old. Most thoroughbreds do not run until they are 3 year olds. That in itself is not the problem here. This race on Nov. 24 was her 5th race. She has not broken maiden yet, another words she has not won yet. She has finished in 2nd once, and 3rd twice, 4th place once and 7th once (a clunker). Tiznow offspring’s do not typically win that often as two year olds, they perform better as 3 year olds. But MyRaceHorse (MRH) ran out of patience with her early. The last two races were claiming races they entered her in and they were 6 furlong races (3/4 of a mile). Two jockey’s that rode her said she would do better running two turns (at least going a mile or more). BUT, Hall of Fame trainer Steve Ausmussen never placed her in a route race (a mile or more). Never, tried running her on turf (always dirt). Never listened to the Jockeys.

Ausmussen, MRH and Spendthrift Farm decided that a $50,000 claiming tag (price) was a fair market value (for a horse they bought for $100,000 at auction). Once again, they knew her sire and her sire’s offspring typically perform better as 3 year olds. The knew owner’s obviously know this, and wanted her! They got impatient (MRH and Ausmussen)! And for the life of me, I can’t (along with many other fellow share holders) understand why they never placed her in a longer race, where her rider’s said she would do better! It is almost like they set her up for failure, though she tried hard (they kept placing her in races to short in distance for her style of running and pedigree’s history). They gave up on her! I understand a horse being claimed is part of the business (they get entered in claiming races because it is often a more competitive race for the many horses) but risky. I made a mistake and got too attached to this one, she was my first.

While I will miss her in my stable, she is better off with a team that will do what is in HER best interest! Good luck to Rocket Ship Racing!!!! I will be watching her! Get out there and come back and kick Steve Ausmussen and MRH’s butt!

I love race horsing, and I love being a microshare owner (though it is small). It is just that micro! I do have a microshare in a 1 year old (soon to turn officially 2 on Jan. 1, 2022) colt………..by the name of Tufnel. Looking forward to seeing him pick up his training pace and run in the Spring or Summer this coming new year! (He has a different trainer than Apples had! Yeah!) Go Tufnel!


Power, speed and beauty = SECRETARIAT

Some may argue, but to me the most amazing racehorse  was Secretariat.  There weren’t enough words to describe this beautiful thoroughbred.   There has never been another like him, and I can not imagine there ever will.

I lived in a college athletic dormitory in 1973, the lobby/TV room was packed, everyone standing to watch Secretariat sprint around the Churchill Downs track as if he were the only horse in the field.   We had about 300 students residing in the dorm, it seemed as if all were in that one cramped room watching.   We had heard of this powerful animal, but this was the first race we’d see him run.  Run, that really isn’t the right word.  A locomotive with the speed of a jet it seemed.

I remember the cheering, not for any other horse, but for this horse to continue stretching his lead……….there was never any doubt.   The further into the race the further the lead would extend.  It was his track and so it was with the Preakness and Belmont races.

College athletes cramped into that room for all the Triple Crown races that year; all for that one beast of an Athlete, Secretariat.   There was no talk of any other horse.   It was exciting just watching Secretariat coming on to the track and enter the pre-race parade showing his colors.

The Kentucky Derby is the most exciting 2 minutes in sports.   You’ve heard that before.   I became a Derby/Triple Crown fan because of Secretariat.   What an amazing animal he was!

It’s a tough race to win, the field is crowded.   The fastest horse can get pinched in and not find an opening, then there may be too much ground to make-up.   The fastest is not always the quickest out of the gate.   My pick for this years Derby is Firing Line rode by Gary Stevens and trained by Simon Callaghan.   Firing Line has morning odds at 12-1.   The pre-race favorite is American Pharoah at 5-2.

That is my call, my bet:  Firing Line.   Once I see the horses parade just before Post Time, I may see another………and say “oops”!   It should be fun, it is an American Classic!