NICK’S PICKS, SUNDAY, JUNE 12TH AT COLONIAL DOWNS

TRIPLE (UN)CROWNED
 Yesterday’s Belmont Stakes delivered yet another player onto the three-year old division in Ruler On Ice.  His shocking win leaves several questions in the division.  There’s favorite and Kentucky Derby winner, Animal Kingdom who found trouble at the start of the race when jockey John Velazquez lost his left iron after a collision.  Trainer Graham Motion has more than suggested that he wants to return him to the turf which makes thoughts of the Virginia Derby, several notches more than possibility.  Can Shackleford go farther than a wee bit much than a mile?  Is Roman Ruler’s win at a mile and a half in the slop  in one of the slowest Belmonts a fluke?  Stay tuned.
     Three steeplechase races scatter the early half of today’s 10 race card.  The feature is a $20,000 claiming race that has 6 jumpers in the 10-horse field that won their last start-some impressively such as Cuse by over 16 at Lexington or Dubai Sunday by over 11 at Callway Gardens (Georgia).  If you are looking for a top trainer and jockey angle in today’s races, look to Thomas Voss (trainer) and Paddy Young (rider) who stand atop the standings.

     Colonial Turf Cup nominations came out over the weekend with several intriguing Colonial alumni being nominated.  Court Vision (2008 Virginia Derby runner up), Frisky Thunder (regular Colonial stakes starter), Kindergarten Kid, Dean’s Kitten and Stately Victor are among the probables.


QUOTE OF THE DAY
It isn’t important who is ahead at one time or another, in either an election or a horse race.  It’s the horse that comes in first at the finish that counts.  -Harry S. Truman (October 1948)


RACING OF YORE VIRGINIA
You might consider today’s steeplechase races at two miles at a quarter lengthy,  but to Virginia-bred Sir Archy they would be a sprint.   Racing was different in 1809, when Sir Archy was winning 4-mile heats in the various tracks around Richmond, VA.  He won the Fairfield and Petersburg Jockey Club Purse.  He was sold 3 times, each time for nearly 4 times the amount he was purchased for prior, the last time by the governor of North Carolina. Retired due to what many considered “a lack of competition”, Sir Archy became the first great stallion sired in America.  With a $100 stud fee he was reported to have earned over $76,000 as a stallion, nice change in those days.  He is buried at Rockcastle, Virginia located in Goochland County.  As for today’s races, the distance wouldn’t have been a problem.  I wonder if he could jump?
  

MAKING RACING HAPPEN…
…is Stan Salter, a racing official handling claims at Colonial Downs and host/handicapper of Colonial’s signal.  Stan competed in the hunter ring as a youth and began hosting Maryland’s horse racing radio show several years ago.  Stan enjoys watching birds at his Charles City rental on off days during Colonial’s meet and  frequents the Sportsmen Tavern.


KNICKERING NICK’S
EXOTIC PLAY OF THE DAY

RACE 4
$.50 PIC4
1,4,7,14 with 1,3 with 6,8,12 wiht 1,2
Costs $24