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Homeracing

Monday Morning Message with Jason Beem Sept. 5, 2022

Profile Picture: Jason Beem

September 5th, 2022

A good Monday morning to you all and hope you’re enjoying a Labor Day Holiday! It’s been a great weekend of racing thus far and obviously the holiday cards today left to go, but I think there’s really only one story to come out of this weekend and it’s Flightline

Like most racing fans, I was left speechless after that Pacific Classic (G1) performance. I’m someone that usually doesn’t appreciate a horse’s greatness until well into their career or even after their career. I think the horseplayer in me is always trying to poke holes in the resume of a big favorite, and that intense criticism carries over into my general fanship. And even thought many already did think of Flightline as great, to me he did still have more to prove going into Saturday’s race. 

I think he proved it though, haha. I thought it was very interesting that he was out a few paths and not solely on the lead early, and that gave me just a moment’s concern for his chances in the race. The time from about midway to the backstretch to the three-eighths pole was utterly impressive. He was pulling away from good horses under a hand ride in a 10-furlong race. It was kind of fascinating to go back and watch the rest of them in their own race as they each went about their runs. Yet he was all alone, galloping as if their existence in the race didn’t even matter. 

The confidence John Sadler had shown in most of the pre-race interviews was well backed on the racetrack. After the race was over, even a jaded old fan like me wasn’t annoyed by all of the hyperbolic statements that came up on Twitter. I don’t think there could have been too much hyperbole for what I had just seen. It was truly incredible and even a couple days later, still is thrilling to watch even knowing the outcome. 

The dominating performance from Flightline obviously puts into question what the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) will look like in a couple of months. With the 10-furlong question answered, along with pretty much every other question, he looms as a monstrous favorite. Who will show up to run against such a horse? I actually think more horses will show up than some people expect. It’s still a $6 million race, and running second or third pays as much or more as winning the Dirt Mile (G1). Plus there’s still a lot of trainers who I think like to take a shot in a big race. 

I’m excited to see Flightline run again and while I understand the economics of the business dictate he might only run one more time, it will be a hotly anticipated race for sure. Might not be a good betting race, but it’ll be must-see TV. 

Earlier this summer I had the good chance to spend some time at Lane’s End Farm with David Ingordo, who was nice enough to show me around. We talked about Flightline as his Met Mile (G1) race was coming up the following weekend. We talked about how part of David’s job is finding the next superhorse. He told me something along the lines of “I’m not even looking for home runs, I’m looking for grand slams.”

I told him that’s often how Pick 5 and Pick 6 players are programmed. Looking for that massive score that would catapult you into a winning year despite maybe missing on dozens and dozens of other tickets. Now David of course has hit grand slams before; he was the buyer of Zenyatta. I have to imagine right now he’s enjoying another circling of the bases.

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