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Reply To: Nick Mordin on Kauto Star

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From his own website:

Kauto Star (41) went and proved me wrong by winning the Tingle Creek Chase. And I do wish he’d run a fast time because then I could finally wave the white flag and join the bandwagon. But I’m afraid I just can’t find a way to massage his speed rating into being anything more than just another of the good Grade 2 class performances he’s put up in the past.

I honestly don’t understand why the British racing press seem so keen on Kauto Star. The top three Irish chasers Kicking King, War Of Attrition and Beef Or Salmon all routinely run six to twelve lengths faster over three miles according to my speed ratings. And Kauto Star is not alone in winning Grade 1 chases over three miles as well as two. War Of Attrition and Kicking King both did that ages ago and nobody made much fuss about it.

Maybe I’m wrong. Perhaps Kauto Star will romp home in the King George and the Gold Cup and prove himself a true Champion. But right now all I can say is that if Kauto Star is a Champion he’s the slowest one I’ve ever seen.

It’s as if "speed" can only be judged on how quickly a horse gets from the start to the finish of a given race, and that this is precisely equivalent to "ability".


Grimes, Mordin, along with other clock watchers, gets it right when he homes in on a horse that has shown itself to be a better horse than generally imagined by recording a genuinely good time. I would not deny that.

(Edited by Prufrock at 10:31 pm on Dec. 6, 2006)