Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Forgot about Cricky!

Cricky’sGoldenEyes runs today at Finger Lakes at 2:31 PM. He’s in the 4th race at 5 ½ furlongs under former exercise rider for Linda Rice, Oscar Gomez. It’s a $4500 claimer with a $9000 purse. It is possible he’ll win (he’s the morning line favorite, though 5 ½ may be too short for him) and his claiming price is a big drop down. All who know him in Linda’s barn think he’s a wonderful horse, even though he may not be such a great racehorse. GOOD LUCKY, CRICKY!



Monday, July 23, 2012


It’s been a whirlwind. Full car load up here plus more brought by friends. Unloading… putting it all away…shopping… getting presentable for festivities honoring Linda Rice, etc., etc. …and that’s just day one!

We woke up to the horses galloping “in our backyard.” It was mesmerizing. Since, we wanted to see if the opening day had any special going-on, we walked to the track early. Big crowd, great weather and excitement in the air. However, the only thing that differentiated the day was track announcer, Tom Durkin, asking those in attendance to yell, “and their off at Saratoga,” when the gate opened for the first race. The crowd dutifully obeyed and we were indeed “off at Saratoga!” For us, the highlight was Eva’s first visit to Saratoga.

I love what we’re doing so much that it would be easy to share every last detail. However, here are some highlights. Seeing Ahvee’s Destiny is always a highlight (if Sylvan send me the photo of Avi kissing Ahvee, I’ll send it to you). She is “showing.” In fact Ellen Bongard who owns the farm where Ahvee’s Destiny is living gave us some beautiful photos of her looking “in foal.” She ate her carrots and cookies (NOT a new Ben & Jerry’s flavor), stayed away from Join the Crowd, an aggressive mare who wanted some of her action and let me stroke her and brush away some of the many flies that like to torture horses.

Having a new Brian Fox painting grace our wall is always a thrill (you may be familiar with his painting of Ahvee’s Destiny Winning the Mechanicville Stakes that’s been the first painting you see at our home). Now Seattle Slew winning the Derby is on the wall in Saratoga.

On Saturday, we got to Linda’s barn at 5:12 AM to see Jess Not Jesse with Abby in the saddle workout alone on the Clare Court training track opposite her barn. That day he got out there even earlier, so we only caught a little of his workout. Nonetheless, the track at that hour is idyllic… the dawn light, the fog and mist, the natural beauty of the flowers, shrubs, grass and dirt tracks, the first horses and riders getting to the track… and the hustle and bustle begins. These people get up every morning to do their jobs. For us, it is all pleasure and, of course, we get to sleep-in the next day and still see the horses out our window. WOW!

A low-light was the performance of Awakino Cat. He was perfectly positioned as they came into the stretch turn of his Stakes Race named after our friends’ horse, Willard Straight (who was named after a former President of Cornell University). The purse was $100K but he didn’t get us any of it, as he failed to fire and didn’t finish with his usual late kick. He was 7 lengths back of the winner. We may be running him back in a $35K claiming race on Friday.

The NYC Ballet’s final performance of the season (there’s talk they may not be back) at SPAC (Saratoga Performing Arts Center) was very exciting. Then we had to get ready for our Housewarming Brunch on Sunday morning. The coffee makers blew the electrical breakers and made us all crazy. Not even Greg, the electrician, who came to the rescue, was able to fix the problem. So, it was Dunkin Donuts to the rescue! Nonetheless, the brunch was very enjoyable.

Tomorrow the two harness horses will run at night at Saratoga Harness in the 10th and 11th races. MarvelthisBliss will have a new driver, Jay Randall. She’s got the number 6 post, while Numismatic goes from the number 1.

You must come to Saratoga, especially if you’ve never been here… but I’m prejudiced!

Have a great week!



Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Spa

Tomorrow, we’re off! We look forward to seeing you in Saratoga Springs.

Glad to report that Don, Jeanne and Clyde are all making progress. Knowing that makes us feel good.

Awakino Cat is entered against tough company in the first race on Saturday. It’s 5 ½ furlongs on the grass with several top sprinters entered. It’s called the Willard Straight Stakes with a purse of $100,000. Awakino is in post 8 and Cornelio Velasquez will ride.

We’ve been very fortunate over the years that we’ve been going to Saratoga to have a big win, usually early in our stay. Awakino Cat will be a longshot but we’re hoping and we’re rooting. Go Cat!

Lots going on up North. It’ll be busy and fun. The reports will continue!

Enjoy the rest of your summer. Ours is just beginning.



Monday, July 16, 2012


The best news is that Don is doing better. He’s got a way to go but he’s progressing. We hope Jeanne is also moving in the right direction. We’ll find out more about her soon. Clyde needs another procedure. We’re praying it succeeds.

Another bright note is the victory by Arielle’s Song. She hasn’t been ours for a long time and we’re surprised she’s still competing. It may have been a cheap claimer but yesterday she won in Michigan by almost 9 lengths!

As for our horses, Numismatic broke stride and finished last on Wednesday night. Marvel finished fourth on Thursday night (both the aforementioned at Saratoga Harness). Hear the Footsteps finished fourth at Belmont in his first race in eight months.

On Friday, we said goodbye to Cricky’sGoldenEyes who will be shipping to Finger Lakes shortly and fed carrots to him and to Jess Not Jesse, who looked very handsome. Hopefully, Awakino Cat will run in a listed Stakes at Saratoga on Saturday in Saratoga. We’re on our way up there on Thursday.

Have a great week!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Lots of horsies

Tomorrow night at Saratoga Harness, Numismatic goes from the 7 post in race #11 at 10:25PM. It’s tough from the outside in harness racing.

On Thursday night, MarvelthisBliss has the number 2 post in the 9th race. He’ll go up in class, since he won his last race but the post will be helpful.

Then, on Friday, Hear the Footsteps makes his first start of the year at Belmont in the first race under Rosie Napravnik, the cover girl of this week’s Thoroughbred Times. She’s cute. She’s good. So, let’s hope Footsie is sharp in his first race. It’s 1 1/16 miles on the grass. We’ll be there rooting for them!

Awakino Cat breezed sharply for the first time after his recent surgery. He looked and sounded good. He’s prepping for an overnight stakes in Saratoga for Saturday, July 21st. We’ve been very lucky at Saratoga. So, here’s hoping!

Jess Not Jesse will hopefully run in late July or early August in Saratoga and, we’re hoping that It’s Truly Ahvee will get to race in Saratoga by the end of the meet. Cricky’sGoldenEyes will be pointed to Finger Lakes.

Saratoga starts Friday, July 20th!



Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Horses and things

On Sunday, MarvelthisBliss was a winner in the 4th race at Saratoga Raceway, while Numismatic finished 4th in the 12th race.

Awakino Cat breezed this week but still showed signs of respiratory problems due to palate displacement. They will perform a Myectomy to try and resolve the issue. It’s helpful in 60-70% of cases. We are hoping he doesn’t have to miss the Saratoga Meet. It’s his favorite track.

It’s Truly Ahvee is relaxing at Eric’s farm. Hear the Footsteps is waiting for the right race. Jess Not Jesse arrived at Belmont. Cricky’sGoldenEyes will run in the 9th race at Belmont on the turf. This will give him an opportunity to perform on a different surface. Linda says they mixed up the jocks in the Racing Secretary’s office. So, we either get Cornelio Velasquez who has been his regular rider or Alan Garcia. If it doesn’t work, Linda will probably send him to Finger Lakes.

Please keep saying a prayer for Gidon ben Ruth. Don had a bad day yesterday.

Have a happy and healthy 4th of July.