Donegal Racing

We won the wrong race!

March 29, 2016

Dear Partners and Friends,
Saturday sent out Keen Ice in Dubai and Patrick's Day in Tampa. We won half of our races which is a damned good average but boy did we win the wrong one.
Other way around would have been a swing of about six million dollars :).

A nice job by Jordan Blair getting Patrick's Day to the winner's circle in his first try on the weeds. While Patrick's Day is statistically bred more for dirt than turf, his brother Wilcox Inn was an outstanding turf performer who butted heads a number of times with Paddy O'Prado...with Paddy usually coming out on top.
Now to the main course. Here is the good and the bad of Ice's outing in the World Cup.

The good:

Ice got beat by three lengths from second place and two million dollars. 

The bad:

This was the fifth race in a row with Ice moving backward. While his race against the best horses in the world was okay, his effort last summer would have been a winning one yesterday. Last year Ice's potential stallion value was sky high and today that value has badly declined pending what happens in the remainder of his racing career.  

I take our mutual desire to maximize the financial results of our partnerships very seriously and I will be evaluating what can be done to move Ice forward in that regard.

In the category of, "Other than that Mrs. Lincoln," I have to say that we had a sensational group of folks here in Dubai for the races. We were treated to spectacular hospitality and had a very good time enjoying each other's company. It was truly another example of, "Buy a horse and see the world."

As I often say, the reason winning big races is so special is because it is so hard to do. We surely win our share but it never seems enough after days like the World Cup.
Top Ten Takeaways from the Dubai World Cup
10. They feed you to death. At the post position draw they served a very heavy full breakfast buffet with all the trimmings. We then took 50 minutes to draw the post positions and moved upstairs for a massive luncheon buffet. My suitcase isn't the only overweight thing on the way out of here! That said, the unlimited 8 oz lobster tails as one item on a 65 item buffet at the races didn't suck.  
9. Finding out which jewelry stores at the incredible Gold Souk (over 600 contiguous jewelry stores) are owned in conjunction with the Sheik is helpful. As in "Hello, I'm here with my horse for the World Cup." Katie Jacobson we took our game here to a whole new level :).
8. Having a horse run in the big race here twice in four years is just an astonishing accomplishment. But as Conor Crawford says, "Yep, it's great...but doesn't pay any bills." Our turn will come!
7. The desert is beautiful. Sunsets and the rising Donegal Moon were glorious.
6. Two trips here in three weeks is a bit demanding for this old man but it certainly doesn't slow Bob Hogan down!
5. How much BBC can one person watch in a month?! A continuous loop of barely changing news from all over the world. Who thought you could miss CNN? Or in Dr. Infante's case, Fox News ;)
4. It is so cool getting emails from all of you who couldn't make the trip wishing us well. #lovethesupport. (Would one of you please tell my kids I used a hashtag?)
3. When you spend 13 days here in a 30 day period you start believing it is normal to have orange rind in your Arabic coffee, cottage cheese on the dessert buffet, muffins with absolutely no flavor, baked beans for breakfast everywhere you go, chocolate or vanilla sauce on pancakes and French toast instead of syrup and most of all, you start believing that the substance they put in your omelet isn't really ham. It might be pigeon or caribou or camel but it ain't like no ham from Iowa!
2. The Dubai airport is the coolest one I have ever seen anywhere in the world.
1. And the number one takeaway from the Dubai World Cup is so controversial I can't put it in writing. Ask me what it is the next time you see me and after patting you down for wires I will share ;).
On the topic of big races, Donegal Moon had his penultimate breeze before the Bluegrass Stakes yesterday. Todd and I talked this a.m. and he had nothing but good things to say about Moon's breeze on Saturday. Moon again had a strong gallop out.  The 1:01 was a very good time for Belmont Saturday but to be honest it wasn't a "superstar" time.  I don't think we are going know what we have with Moon until his next out.  Which is still likely to be the Bluegrass.  We are working on jockeys now. 

And after a week with our four year old star we now head to Charleston and Elloree this week to check out our two year olds at the breeze show/luncheon at Frank Smith's training center. The forecast calls for rain but we will get a good look either way. Inside this new crop are some winners and you can hold me to that promise :).

What a horsey March this has turned out to be!


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