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Author Topic: Illinois Horse of the Year Debate  (Read 1672 times)
DAK
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« on: November 04, 2005, 08:54:26 AM »

The late season emergence of the 2-year-old filly Original Spin has stirred quite a debate as to who should be crowned Illinois Horse of the Year for 2006.
   
For most of the year, the Chris Block grass start Fort Prado has been the front runner for the award. Perfectly campaigned this season, he won the first four races of his 4-year-old campaign, and is now five for seven with earnings of over $230,000 for the season. The son of El Prado was most recently victorious in a Keeneland allowance on Oct. 14, and his next stop will be the River City Handicap on Nov. 20 at Churchill Downs.

Fort Prado has failed to take down a graded stakes this season -- enduring a troubled trip in finishing fifth in the Grade II Play the King Stakes at Woodbine and moving too soon when suffering a narrow defeat in the Grade III Carey at Hawthorne. He did defeat a graded stakes quality field in the $150,000 Sea O’Erin at Arlington, and has bagged a pair of other minor stakes tallies this season.

A debut winner against open company on August 13, Original Spin returned to capture the Grade III Arlington Washington Lassie, and last Saturday she gutted out a third place finish in the Grade I Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies.

Htting the board in a World Championship race is huge, but was it enough to vault her past Fort Prado? Let’s face it -- this is an award for “Horse of the Year”, not “Horse of the last five months”, and Original Spin races in a restricted division, while Fort Prado must compete against top turf horses of all ages.

Original Spin will not make another start this season, and if Fort Prado were to capture the River Cities, he could sway a few more opinions his way. Even if he doesn’t, he has my vote. -- DAK
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beatledave
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« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2005, 10:33:49 AM »

Sorry DAK, on this one I disagree with you (and I also know I said that I don't post anymore when I was with you yesterday, but I guess l was wrong).

A 2-year-old's "year" is only 5 or 6 months since very few make the races before July anyway, so the "horse of the last 5 or 6 months" comment to me is a bit unfair.

I seldom select 2yos as HOTY, but under certain circumstances, I can.  Polar Expedition in his 2yo season comes to mind).

A third, and a good third at that, plus a Graded stakes victory trumps 'Prado's' record IMHO, though a win at CD in the Fall might move me a little bit.

Right now my vote goes to O.S.  (of course, you and I actually get votes!)

Curious to hear what others think.
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jcolby
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« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2005, 05:58:06 PM »

I have to agree with Beatledave--Original Spin is far from the only two year old to win an Illinois Horse of the Year title. Two Year old HOY's include Two Item Limit (who won again as a 3 YO), Polar Expedition (won at 2, again at 3 and as an older horse), Showtime Deb in 88, Sun Power in 82.
Further arguments in favor of OS--she is just the third IL-bred to win or place in a BC event--the others being Buck's Boy who won the Classic and Oueee Bebe who placed third in the Distaff back in 1987.
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DAK
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« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2005, 07:25:38 PM »

Two Item Limit ran third in the Distaff as a 3yo I think.
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Thomas Graham
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« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2005, 07:41:07 PM »

You are correct Joe, she did run third in the '01 Distaff.  I'm not sure which way I'd vote if I had a vote --- both are deserving animals.
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David
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« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2005, 09:15:59 PM »

Fort Prado has had a nice year without a doubt, but it seems pretty clear to me that Original Spin is the more deserving nominee at this point. She has done everything asked of her, graded winner, placed 3rd  in not only a G1 but the Breeders Cup. I would venture to say that she is one of the top 5 or so 2yo fillies in the nation this year.

I guess you would have to ask yourself where Fort Prado would have run in the BC, I assume he would have gone in the Mile, and with the exception of the horse that broke down I don't think he would have been a threat the any of the horses that ran - he just isn't that kind of horse at this point of his career. Would he even be considered one of the top 50 even turf horses in the nation?
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John Frank
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« Reply #6 on: November 04, 2005, 09:34:44 PM »

This dicussion is done. 8 days Taylor Madison runs. Her campaign ends for the year after this race. She will be 2 for 2. Who the hell else in Illinois will be undeafeted. Next the Kentucky Oaks.
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g3tPWNed_24
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« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2005, 12:09:39 AM »

2 item limit might won the damn race had solis not had her bout 50 wide. he did the same thing on wild fit saturday. dont play this guy on a horse that has to come from more than a few outta it, more times than not youll get burned
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DAK
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« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2005, 11:10:32 AM »

Fort Prado would definately be in the top 50 turf horses in the nation -- probably the top 30.

You have to remember, Original Spin only races against 2yo fillies, Fort Prado has to run against horses of ALL ages. The talent pool is MUCH deeper.

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Horse Voice
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« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2005, 11:20:25 AM »

I think the "Illinois Horse of the Year" should be one that reflects the overall quality of Ill-breds that the bettor has come to expect.

So, anything trained by Gust Zissides or Ida Spagnola will do just fine.
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alydar66
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« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2005, 06:00:21 PM »

Its actually kind of sad that those two horses are the best Illinois has.
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Jim C
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« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2005, 12:07:19 AM »

Sad?? Please Id take either one of them. But my vote would have to go to Original Spin. She won a GIII and ran 3rd in the BC....she peaked right when she should have and as a 2 yr old is showing as much talent as a 2 yr old can show. Fort Prado is a very nice horse and he does have to face deeper company but that isnt Original Spin's problem and shouldnt be held against her. He will win Illinois Older Horse of the Year but Horse of the Year should go to Original Spin. After all,  still ran third in the Breeders Cup which is suppose to be the best around only 2 beat her and they are not from Illinois. She will win and the vote may not be that close.
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alydar66
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« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2005, 12:23:08 AM »

What I meant was besides those two horses can you think of any other Illinois breds that can compete and hold their own against the best horses around the country.  Its disappointing how small the group of quality Illinois breds is.

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