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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Sometimes Being Contrary Can Be Rewarding

Back in 2010, breeding in Maryland was a risky business.   Risky enough many people probably thought you were crazy to breed to a Maryland sire.  After all, with Rosecroft Raceway closed, all the racing in Maryland was confined to a summer session at Ocean Downs.  In 2011, people probably looked at you funny if you bought a yearling from a Maryland sire .  In many cases, this is when the contrarian does the best; going against conventional wisdom.   Here is a case where for two owners, it paid have a Maryland-sired horse.

Let me introduce you to Spinout, a 3yo pacing colt by Spunout and the mare JK Empress.  Spinout has a season record of 11-8-1-0 with earnings of $144,921 and a mark of 1:57.3 set at Rosecroft; a pretty good follow up to his two year old campaign where he went 4-4-0-0 and earned $94,672 and a 2:04.3 mark at Ocean Downs.  That is a career to date record of 15-12-1-0 and $239,593 in lifetime earnings.

The reason you likely never heard of Spinout unless you lived or raced in Maryland?  His first sixteen purse starts were walkovers in the MDSS.  That's right, he ran the table in the sires stakes at 2 and 3 because there was no one else to race against him; the one other horse eligible never made it to the races.  After the sire stakes season was over, he raced in overnights where he finally became mortal, with a win and a second out of five additional starts.  I am sure he will do well in the overnight ranks.
No, Spinout may not have another steller season but there will be other seasons for him.  Not so sure we will be hearing much about Doc Banning (You Betcha-AnnieBobs) a 3yo trotting gelding  who at least had the competition of another horse in some of his sires stakes starts.  His lifetime mark is 2:08.2 set at Rosecroft.  His two year haul was $219,519.

Some people will no doubt complain about these two horses hauling down so much loot when racing against little or no competition in the sires stakes.  Quite honestly, I see nothing wrong with it.  The connections had enough faith in the Maryland program where few did that they took a chance and as such, they were rewarded.

So if you race in a state where things are a little dicey such as Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, and to a lesser extent New Jersey, you may want to consider breeding to a local sire or buying a local yearling.   Why their situation may not be as dicey as it was in Maryland back in 2010, you will likely face fewer opponents and there will be a larger portion of the pie available for you.  If you are real lucky, you may grab most of it.  

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