lundi 28 novembre 2011

Race Day

Magical Flower and Satwa Sunrise at canter

It's race day at Lyon-Parilly for Magic. She'll be wearing the number 10 and the start for her race, the Prix de Pont de Vivaux, is at 4:10 pm. Right now, she's in the van, on her way down the A6 from Maisons-Laffitte to Lyon, with her trainer, Gina Rarick, the only American woman trainer working in France. The jockey, Frédéric Spanu, is already there. He'll be racing the number 10 Chopouest, given 20/1 as an outsider against the favorite Kolokol at 5.6/1, in the Prix la Flèche, the third race of the day. Today is the first time ever that I will watch a race and know the horse and her trainer.

I am learning. Like with anything, there is a lot to know about racing and each particular horse before one can open one's mouth and say anything pertinent, let alone intelligent. If I had more time, I'd look up every horse in the field, a big one with 20 starting, but I'll start with Magic and the race favorite, Galixi, a 6-year-old mare from the stables of Jehan Bertran de Balanda.

Magic is a 3-year-old filly by Oasis Dream out of Fancy Rose. Oasis Dream is one of the best stallions in Europe. She has her chance. likes her overall, but at small stakes. She placed 5th at Argentan in early October, in a slightly longer race on about the same track conditions as the last report for Parilly's grass gallop track. Her trainer hoped for a little more training time, but Magic didn't get scratched like she expected she would, and off they go.

She's currently at 23/1 at the PMU, but I am not giving up on her. She's young, racing her second year, and in her 12 races to Galixi's 62 she has 5 places, while Galixi has 8 wins and 27 places in her 5-year career, but there's always a first time. Magic's a beginner with promise, learning her trade, next to Galixi's glory.

I have organized my day around this event (and my back, which I threw out again last week), even though she is neither my horse, nor a horse in whom I have as much as "a leg". But I know her, and I know her trainer and her exercise jockey, Agatha, and that's just as much.


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