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One Turn Route Races

 

Most route races (1 mile and longer), are raced around two turns. But there are exceptions because some tracks have chutes in the backstretch and therefore can run one-turn route races. This is important to note because one turn route races are generally faster than two turn races, both in early pace and final time. 

 

Dirt/Synthetic:

Up to 1 1/8 miles
Belmont Park
Colonial Downs
Up to 1 mile
Aqueduct main track 
Arlington Park
Churchill Downs
Gulfstream Park
Laurel Park

Turf:

Up to 1 1/8 miles
Woodbine
Up to 1 mile
Belmont Park (Widener course only)
Kentucky Downs

 

Top Mud Sires (wet track sires and pedigrees)

Horses with these names in their pedigree should like off tracks. This includes sires, dam sires, and broodmares. In some cases I've listed horses from similar families. For instance, Grindstone/Birdstone, Machiavellian and Street Cry. Relaunch (In Reality) is one of the most famous mudders so I also have other horses like Bertrando and Officer on the list, because they are from the same line:

 

Afleet
Air Forbes Won
A P Indy
Awesome Again
Bertrando
Birdstone
Blushing Groom
Boundary
Carson City
Cee's Tizzy
City Zip
Clever Trick
Conquistador Cielo
Cormorant
Crafty Prospector
Cure The Blues
Danzig
Dehere
Deputy Minister
Distorted Humor
Dixie Union
El Prado
Elusive Quality
Empire Maker
Fappiano
Forty Niner
Gone West
Grindstone
Gulch
In Reality
Java Gold
Kingmambo
Lord At War
Machiavellen
Malibu Moon
Memo
More Than Ready
Mr Prospector
Not For Love
Nureyev
Officer
Polish Numbers
Pulpit
Quiet American
Rahy
Relaunch
Sky Mesa
Skywalker
Smart Strike
Speightstown
Street Cry
Storm Cat
Thunder Gulch
Unbridled 
Unbridled's Song
Valid Appeal
Valid Wager
Wagon Limit

 

Pandy's Top 10 U.S. Thoroughbreds (based on horses that I saw race)

Of the horses below, I saw all of them in person except Zenyatta and Spectacular Bid. On a list of the top 10 or 20 horses of all time, and horses that I did not get a chance to see race, I would definitely include Citation, Man o'War, Kelso, and Dr. Fager, and others merit serious consideration. Of the European horses, Frankel, who recently retired undefeated in 14 starts, stands out to me and might be the best turf horse that ever raced.

For pure speed, I feel that Secretariat was the fastest horse I ever saw, especially at the classic distances. Seattle Slew, Zenyatta, and Ruffian were also extremely fast horses. Seattle Slew and Ruffian just ran horses off their feet with blazing early speed. I saw Ruffian twice in person and I've always felt that she was the fastest horse I ever saw up to a mile. Zenyatta was undoubtedly the fastest finisher I've ever seen. Since it's much tougher to run fast late than early, I feel that Zenyatta is probably right around the level of Seattle Slew and Ruffian. Yes Ruffian and Seattle Slew ran faster races and early fractions, but that's because they raced on the pace. Zenyatta was a deep closer so she did not have control over the final time, she ran as fast as she had to while winning 19 of 20 starts. 

The best turf horse on the list was John Henry, although Secretariat ran big on the turf as well. I have Cigar ranked ahead of John Henry but not by much because when you include John Henry's turf races, his career was quite remarkable. 

 

  1. SECRETARIAT

  2. SEATTLE SLEW

  3. ZENYATTA (F)

  4. RUFFIAN-(F)

  5. AFFIRMED

  6. FOREGO

  7. CIGAR

  8. JOHN HENRY

  9. SPECTACULAR BID

  10. ALYDAR

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Last updated: February 22, 2013.