>Finally a top trainer gets the surface question right..
>I’ve been saying in this space for nearly a year: You cannot maximize a horse’s potential in the Derby by racing and training strictly on synthetics prior to the big day. You can still win the race if you have the best horse – Pioneer of the Nile came close, but it’s FAR from an optimal scenario.
Witness Bob Baffert and Looking at Lucky:
Likely Eclipse winning 2 year old has won 5 of 6 starts out West, all on synthetics. He will be rested and then prepped twice before the first Saturday in May, but BOTH ON DIRT!
Thanks goodness BB has figured it out, training/racing this fantastic colt on synthetics at 2, then changing to dirt at 3. Let’s hope he doesnt just ship East for the races, but holes up somewhere like CD with a dirt training surface.
I don’t care which surface you prefer, I don’t care which is safer for a horse (infrequent breezing will hurt ’em all) – all I care about is winning races.
Perhaps at some point a ‘name’ trainer will breeze 2x a week and win the big one – so the copycats will follow – then we’ll see our breakdown percentage drop nationwide.