What have we learned or seen in Triple Crown 2022 to date - Thoughts of a TB owner and horse lover

  1. This is a very talented bunch of horses. Early voting and “Richie” or Rich strike" are VERY talented colts despite their bloodlines! They still had to run their races, listen to their jockeys, stay mentally sane, show so heart and determination, and of course, outrun everyone else on the race track. The paces/speeds of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness might have supported their running styles, but they both had to complete the job and win their races. I don’t think it was a fluke; just the best horse won based on the variables presented ( I’m a chemist). The race developed to favor them BUT they still had to do the job. the rest of the field didn’t jut collapse. Congrats to both and a big shoulder hug/pat !!!

  2. Epicenter is GORGEOUS!!! But has the rest of the 2022 class of three-year-old colts caught up with him? He struggled to get that last furlong in the Derby and couldn’t catch Early Voting in the Preakness. Nothing wrong with that. It just shows how even the horses have become. Now we will see a “real horse race.” I Look forward to the Breeders Cup in the fall.

  3. More trainers publicly claim to make race decisions based on what is “good for the horse.” Many good, understated trainers have continuously operated like this, as true horsemen ( e.g., Barclay Tagg) did. Nice to see. However, often, "big-name owners have not embraced that philosophy… One question, is this new “trend” or just “flavor of the month?” Here is a question, Once Baffertt returns, will trainers put horses in races; they don’t believe in feeding one’s ego, putting the race participants, horse, and rider at risk, and

  4. Over this past Triple Crown, series have had more comments than not recognizing that THE HORSE DOES THE WORK, and it is about the horse, and the jockey and trainer are the support team. So refreshing. The winning owners and trainers seem pretty humble and appreciate what their horse is and has given them. By comparison, Lukas expressed remorse for NOT RUNNING Etheral Road in Derby, even though teh horse had been off and not doing that great day before the Derby. To me, there is genuinely off about doing that. Why put an “off animal” in a race/competition and put everyone competing at risk? Just so to fulfill your ego? That is sick …

  5. It is not necessary to use Lasix on everyone racing in the Classics. But, I due think it should be allowed for horses that really need it. Realistically though, we should be breeding from a bunch of “bleeders.” Hopefully banning Lasix in the Triple Crown will take care of that problem. Not an expert on this topic.

  6. Finally, the Triple Crown goes forward WITHOUT Bob Baffert, and for the most part, the horse population is LOVING EVERY MINUTE OF IT!!! Too bad he won’t just stay away.

As I said on the other thread I disagree with every word except the part about Epicenter being gorgeous and lasix being allowed but welcome you back to the forum.


Did it ever occur to you that DWLs remarks may refer more to his awareness its likely his last Derby horse and not greed? Whatever else, he’s pushing 90.

Or that many “owners” are are very large groups, partnerships or various forms of corporations? No single person to appear humble to you?

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You are entitled to your opinion, and Lasix is currently not allowed in the Triple Crown races. However, I think both horses worked hard and should be given their due credit. We often forget that the difference between a “good” horse and a “great” horse is that a great horse can overcome the challenges thrown at them during the race, and they don’t need to carry their racetrack with them. I think Epicenter is VERY much a talented horse, as are Rich Strike and Early Voting, but not a “great” horse (at this [point of his career). A “great horse” ( i.e., Seattle Slew, Affirmed, Forego, Zanyetta , Citation,etc. ) would have ben able to overcome that crazy first quarter in the Kentucky Derby or made up that ground in the Preakness after a slow opening pace, questionable ride by his jockey, and dwelling at the gate. Unfortunately, he couldn’t do it—just a lovely horse. We all have opinions, thanks for sharing yours.

Per your “1.”:

Rich Strike’s sire is Keen Ice, who was a decent racehorse (earnings over $3,000,000). Early Voting’s sire is Gun Runner, one of the HOTTEST sires out there now. Gun Runner earned over $15,000,000 during his career.

Certainly, neither come from “nobody” lines, although I can’t speak for their dams.


I agree with her on #6. It’s questionable as to how much company we have among the racetrack people, owners included, but a Baffert-free TC has been refreshing.


Early Voting’s dam is a half sister to Speightstown, so certainly not a nobody line either!


I’m going to be the jerk here.

But how does a chemist get off telling a licensed racehorse trainer, “you are entitled to your opinion…” only to ignore it entirely?

As a scientist, surely you can appreciate the value of an expert opinion on the topic and not just dismiss it to cling to your own hypothesis.

Sorry, but this has been getting my goat lately. It’s not just this conversation, it’s a worldwide epidemic. “My opinion holds just as much value as your expertise.”

Of course, I don’t know the OP from anyone. The caveat of the internet.

A chemistry teacher who has double the years racing experience than teaching experience


Yes, I did think/consider that DWLs remarks may refer more to his awareness. But, unfortunately, it’s likely his last Derby. The Derby should be about the horse and not his ego/desire to win another Derby.

I don’t know you or anyone else here. Still, I am going to make a very inclusive assumption that NONE of us here would enter our horses in a competition, whether it is dressage, show jumping, hunters, trail riding, barrel racing, etc., if we got down to the barn in the morning and found them ill, lame or just plain “off their feed,” and just not feeling 100% right. I will assume that most of us will say, " F… oh well, there’s another day… I didn’t need a ribbon/trophy anyway. Now let me take care of my baby." I recognize there are others here that well going ahead and competing anyway because you put a lot of time, training, and preparation for the completion, after all “10 mins. of competition is not going to hurt them.” After the class/course/show, you care for the horses’ needs. There are two very different ways to handle the same situation, ultimately though the horse should come first as they are the one that does the work.
I am going to assume that WL doesn’t need another trophy. What if he had entered Etheral Road in the Derby knowing teh horse had been off and just not feeling like himself and the horse took a wrong step, resulting in a compound fracture of the front leg. He flips over in front of other horses behind them and brings them down, resulting in a couple of fatally injuried horses and a paralyzed jockey… would that have been worth it… to feed ones ego? Recoginizing, that are feel that there is nothing wrong to enetereing a less then 100% horse in a race. In ONLY my opinion opinion that would be very irresponsible from person who is looked at as a mentor in the sport of horse racing. We have all seen those horriable accidents and one has to wonder if listening to the horse and giving them break could have avoided them. Sometimes its an accident/ bad step. Howeve, I am sure there times, the horse was not ready for that stress, not just not up to it that day and Should not have been in the race. I am sure there are others here that feel differently.

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I am not sure what trying to say here. I am not here debate… both opinions have equal value and they are just as entitled to engage in theirs as I am in mine. My point of the post was as follows:

  1. Reach Strike and Early Voting were just as talented as Epicenter and their victories were not a fluke. In order for these horses to win their races they had to perform flawlessly, give them due credit. Realistically, if they are not then most likely they would not have won.

  2. This is a very talented bunch of horse, some may be late developers that now catching up with Epicenter. Future races will be interesting among this group… What is there to debate?

  3. It was fun to see the underdog win. The owners appeared to be humble as compared to the last 3 years. Big deal… what is there to debate?

  4. It is refreshing to have TC without Bob Baffert. Some here adore him and others here can’t stand him. Each his own. My point is that it was nice to see a TC where the coverage was more of a ":celebration of the horse, " and less upon focused on a person who should really not be considered “spokesman,” of the sport. What is there to debate. I LOVE the horses others feel different.

I m NOT new to the sport I started following the sport in 1975, when I first picked Foolish Pleasure to win the Derby ( I was in grade school at the time). I grew up not far from Belmont Park, in NY and been following racing TOO long. I believe I have the right to my opinions while respecting that of others.

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From what I understand on the Derby site here his dam was sold for $1, 700, and recently was passed along for free to the current owner. There is a picture of her and she is a really nice looking mare. She is 21 years old and they going/still trying to breed her to get a foal. Shes has had problems in the past. I would just let here enjoy life.

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The “Derby group” on this site seems to dislike the bloodlines of Rich Strike. I saw plenty of “black type” in his pedigree and thought his breeding was okay, but I am not a commercial breeder. There are others here who thought it was pretty inbred and knocked his breeding/bloodlines. But, once again, it is just opinion and nothing more.

Since you don’t appear to know this: it’s not possible to run a “sick” horse in the Derby. Or any horse race in Kentucky. Or even to breeze a horse that isn’t well. Every horse that races or breezes in this state has a complete vet exam in the hours before the race or breeze takes place. Every one, every time.

I’m guessing you misunderstood Wayne Lukas’s remarks. Even if he had wanted to run a horse that was unwell in the Derby, he wouldn’t have been allowed to do so.


You are both wrong about number 6 then. Lukas even mentioned Bob at the Alibi breakfast. And what in the heck is a Derby Group?

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To clarify - OP doesn’t miss Bob. I don’t either. I did say “I don’t know how much company we have”, meaning I am well aware that Baffert has a raft of supporters.


There is no “Triple Crown 2022.”
There is a Triple Crown ONLY if and when one horse wins the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness, and the Belmont.
Otherwise, the title and the “crown” are not awarded, ergo, the Crown does not exist that year.

Referring to “the Triple Crown” before it is won started, to the best of my knowledge and memory, during the years after Affirmed won it for real. People got so desperate for another Triple Crown winner that they started talking of a “Triple Crown” as a set of 3 races instead of what it actually is, the award for 1 horse who wins those 3 races.


My understanding is that Rich Strike’s dam was sold so cheaply (and then given away) because she was believed to be infertile. A broodmare who can’t carry a foal has no monetary value. The current owner has now sent her to Rood & Riddle to see if that can be changed. It wasn’t about her bloodlines being “discarded” or “discounted”, but Rich Strike’s win in the Derby made it now worth it, economically, to move heaven and earth to try to get another foal out of the mare.


I am still trying to figure out what a Derby group is. I certainly hope whatever it is that I am not part of it. As far as the rest of @penelopeandthecats points it just feels too monumental to even start picking them apart so I will leave you all to it.


Why on earth would you think that Early Voting was talented “despite his bloodlines”?

He is by Gun Runner. His tail female line consists of 4 consecutive black type producers, his second Dam produced Speightstown and Irap, and his Dam Sire is Tiznow. What else could you possibly want?