The home of intelligent horse racing discussion
The home of intelligent horse racing discussion

Golden Era Or Generally Mediocre?

Home Forums Horse Racing Golden Era Or Generally Mediocre?

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 31 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #131817
    Flash
    Member
    • Total Posts 1144

    Someone tell me a top class horse that Istabraq beat over hurdles. The competition was absolutely dire ………. French Holly, Theatreworld, Hors La Loi ???

    Good horse but there’s no way IMO that he would’ve beaten any of the 70’s Champions or Persian War.

    #131819
    Aidan
    Member
    • Total Posts 1198

    I am not suggesting the horses he beat were superstars but equally they were not as you call it "dire". French Holly was the supposid second coming after winning so well as a novice but he couldnt get him off the bridle…nor indeed could any. He also beat Moscow Flyer and Limestone Lad over hurdles with ease. It was the margins in which he beat these horses.

    As for Sea Pigeon and co…yep I am sure they were very good horses but there is this assumption within racing that those in the past were much superior. I have watched many of those races on tape and time and time again there are usually a few horses finishing close up. If that happens nowadays the form is always rubbished but back then it was simply because they were all superstars.

    Racing is the only sport I can think off where athletes (horses) and performances are considered to be not improving. How on earth is that possible?

    #131820
    Flash
    Member
    • Total Posts 1144

    Limestone Lad was a stayer. French Holly, come on he could hardly win a race worthy of the name out of novice company.

    Racing has rating systems based on horses racing against each other which is ongoing year by year, race by race, thats how we can rate horses of different generations against each other.

    #131821
    Fist of Fury 2k8
    Member
    • Total Posts 2930

    Flash…….you could hardly call the opposition poor and anyway Ken Olivers Drumikill as good as he was, was no champion when Persian War beat him in the CH.

    Persian War is probably my favourite horse of all time but I couldn’t split him and Istabraq. I doubt if either could have handled Bula who did actually beat Persian War very easily when he won the Champion Hurdle.

    Ok Persian War wasn’t the same horse by then but had Bula been a couple of years older I don’t think Persian War would have won 3 Championships.

    Bula had the most devastating turn of foot I have ever seen in a hurdler. He stayed every yard of the Champion Hurdle trip and further plus he could finish faster than any horse you are ever likely to see on a NH race course.

    Persian War before his 4th attempt in the Champion Hurdle met nothing near the caliber of Bula and neither did Istabraq…..but they were both Great hurdlers and only a fool would knock them.

    IMO The Persian War, Bula, Comedy of Errors and Lanzorote era was without exception the real golden age of hurdlers……….closely followed by Sea Pigeon Night Nurse and Monksfield……….great times, great horses and Istabraq would have been right at home among them.

    #131823
    Flash
    Member
    • Total Posts 1144

    Flash…….you could hardly call the opposition poor and anyway Ken Olivers Drumikill as good as he was, was no champion when Persian War beat him in the CH.

    Persian War is probably my favourite horse of all time but I couldn’t split him and Istabraq. I doubt if either could have handled Bula who did actually beat Persian War very easily when he won the Champion Hurdle.

    Ok Persian War wasn’t the same horse by then but had Bula been a couple of years older I don’t think Persian War would have won 3 Championships.

    Bula had the most devastating turn of foot I have ever seen in a hurdler. He stayed every yard of the Champion Hurdle trip and further plus he could finish faster than any horse you are ever likely to see on a NH race course.

    Persian War before his 4th attempt in the Champion Hurdle met nothing near the caliber of Bula and neither did Istabraq…..but they were both Great hurdlers and only a fool would knock them.

    IMO The Persian War, Bula, Comedy of Errors and Lanzorote era was without exception the real golden age of hurdlers……….closely followed by Sea Pigeon Night Nurse and Monksfield……….great times, great horses and Istabraq would have been right at home among them.

    You were going so well until the last line. I doubt Istabraq would’ve been in the shake up at all.

    Just my opinion of course.

    #131824
    Aidan
    Member
    • Total Posts 1198

    Without Istabraq French Holly would have won an Irish Champion Hurdle, a Martel Hurdle and probably the Champion Hurdle itself adding to his win in the Christmas Hurdle. Istabraq didnt just beat him, he absolutely pulled double over him from 2 miles to 2miles 4f. Distances and the opposition are not easily rated with Istabraq due to the style of the ride he got and the ease in which he won.

    I cannot help but think if Hardy Eustace, Brave Inca, Harchibald and Macs Joy were all winning a couple of decades ago people would be commenting no the golden age of hurdles…instead many just rate them much of muchness simply because they kept beating each other. But when the so called greats of the 70s and 80s did it they are all champions or superstars.

    #131825
    Aidan
    Member
    • Total Posts 1198

    I also note French Holly went on to win a Grade 1 hurdle in France a few weeks after Istabraq demolished him at Aintree.

    #131829
    Fist of Fury 2k8
    Member
    • Total Posts 2930

    You are forgetting one thing Flash…………I am a better judge than you :lol: :lol: :lol:

    It takes a helluva lot for me to say a horse is or was "Great" They have to be something extra extra special…..

    You may catch me saying Dessie was a great horse but I would never say he was a "Great" horse.

    Arkle, Persian War, Bula, Istabraq and Kauto Star are the only truly "Great Horses I have seen in my lifetime.

    You may be surprised at me saying Kauto Star as there have been many great horses people might think were better.

    What makes him stand out for me is he has it all. Although prone to silly errors he is for the best part a brilliant jumper, he travels so well and gets there so easily he can within a few strides settle a race instantly. As a guy said in one of the racing website Chasers aren’t supposed to accelerate instantly like that. He is without doubt the best I have seen in 40 years even if he never wins another race.

    Even Arkle lacked instant acceleration, he was a totally different type of horse who once hit top speed nothing could live with him………when he did lose it was because of the weight and his inability to quicken instantly.

    Istabraq was so far ahead of everything he made good horses look moderate. Aiden rightly points out how good French Holly was……he would be every bit if not better than Harchibald that’s for sure and look how close he came to winning a champion hurdle.

    When Istabraq won at Liverpool I couldn’t carry enough money to back him.
    I thought he was a moral certainty

    His performace that day was unreal………..the class was oozing out of him….his jockey was absolutely taking the Mickey out of French Holly….I thought he was going to lean over and give him a pat at one point….I stood there watching and couldn’t believe how easy he won……he could have won by a hurdle and that is without exaggeration.

    Now if you think there is a better hurdler who has run since Bula than him then you must either hate the horse for some reason or you need to see an optician. He is the only horse in History you could say was unlucky not to have won 4 champion hurdles………..had he not have gone wrong he surely would have and had he ran in the Champion instead of the novice on his first visit he might even have won 5……..That’s what I call a "Great" horse……forget the opposition look at the horse.

    Or as Bruce once said. "Don’t concentrate on the finger or you will miss all the heavenly glory" :wink:

    #132105
    stilvi
    Participant
    • Total Posts 4518

    Just returning to the original topic Nick Luck ended today bemoaning the lack of strength in the Champion Chase division compared to the staying chasers. I wonder what sort of Cheltenham Gold Cup it would be if both Kauto Star and Denman did not show up?

    #132151
    Charlie D
    Member
    • Total Posts 500

    Just returning to the original topic Nick Luck ended today bemoaning the lack of strength in the Champion Chase division compared to the staying chasers. I wonder what sort of Cheltenham Gold Cup it would be if both Kauto Star and Denman did not show up?

    Probably an average one with above average horse Exotic Dancer probably winning.

    No Exotic Dancer in last years GC and Kauto Star has probably beaten average Chasers. No Kauto Star or Exotic Dancer in this years race and Denman would probably be beating average Chasers

    All probably just like above average GC winners Best Mate and Kicking King

    #132153
    Fist of Fury 2k8
    Member
    • Total Posts 2930

    Perish the thought it’s been years since we had a dual like this on the cards……But the point although valid may be a trifle weak.

    We have seen many bad Gold Cup winners and many great ones I think Exotic Dancer would be neither if the others weren’t around.

    He would probably be a Jodami or Forgiven n Forget the kind of horse that would command people respect without carrying the tag Superstar.

    He’s a nice horse Exotic Dancer who has a good turn of foot and stays really well…..not a horse you could knock easily…..unfortunately for him he has run into Kauto.

    Now he could have another arch enemy in Denman although he still got a lot to prove.

    We are all assuming the Gold Cup is a foregone conclusion. Either Kauto or Denman are going to win.

    Who’s to say ED wont splatter egg over all our faces come March, wasn’t far away last year and horses are very good at making even the best judges look very stupid. He ran no where near his best in the KG.

    I don’t think he will I am 100% a Kauto man, but the easiest thing in the world in racing is to imagine what horses are going to do……….so many times the actual event turns out totally different

    Many factors can turn form on it’s head in an instant as we have all found out to our cost.

    The Gold Cup can turn out to be a total farce as they often go so fast a horse you wouldn’t even think could win is the only horse who staying on at the end..

    Turpin Green is that type of horse he was very impressive in last years gold cup and was going really well 2 out he could spring a surprise if there is to be one, as could two or three others.

    The Listner could blow Denman away today and the entire reflection of the Cold Cup could change in a flash.

    On all known form the GC looks a 2 horse race , maybe even a one horse race but who knows for sure………roll on March and the best of luck to Denman today I hope he wins doing handstands.

    #132171
    AndyRAC
    Participant
    • Total Posts 397

    Regarding last years Gold Cup, turning in with 2 to jump there were far too many horses in contention to take the form literally. Normally in this race they’re strung out, Kauto would still have won but a stronger gallop would’ve helped ED. Maybe this year Denman will set a strong gallop and try to run the finish out of KS, unlikely though. We desparetely need a race, not like Boxing Day which was almost a schooling session. Sport is about competition and unpredictability, when things are predictable who wants to watch.

    #132304
    Aragorn
    Member
    • Total Posts 2208

    Regarding last years Gold Cup, turning in with 2 to jump there were far too many horses in contention to take the form literally. Normally in this race they’re strung out, Kauto would still have won but a stronger gallop would’ve helped ED. Maybe this year Denman will set a strong gallop and try to run the finish out of KS, unlikely though. We desparetely need a race, not like Boxing Day which was almost a schooling session. Sport is about competition and unpredictability, when things are predictable who wants to watch.

    Bloody ell Andy, cheer up!!! :o

    #132398
    Fist of Fury 2k8
    Member
    • Total Posts 2930

    Regarding last years Gold Cup, turning in with 2 to jump there were far too many horses in contention to take the form literally. Normally in this race they’re strung out, Kauto would still have won but a stronger gallop would’ve helped ED. Maybe this year Denman will set a strong gallop and try to run the finish out of KS, unlikely though. We desparetely need a race, not like Boxing Day which was almost a schooling session. Sport is about competition and unpredictability, when things are predictable who wants to watch.

    When Arkle won at the odds of 1/10 every racing fan in the UK and Ireland watched him. I think racing would relish a few more Kauto wins like Boxing Day, no matter how predictable they become,….Mohammad Ali in his prime drew millions of viewers and probably only village idiots thought there was a chance of him losing……..

    You rightly point out important factors but they are not the only reasons people watch sport.

    #132406
    stilvi
    Participant
    • Total Posts 4518

    When Arkle won at the odds of 1/10 every racing fan in the UK and Ireland watched him. I think racing would relish a few more Kauto wins like Boxing Day, no matter how predictable they become,….Mohammad Ali in his prime drew millions of viewers and probably only village idiots thought there was a chance of him losing……..

    You rightly point out important factors but they are not the only reasons people watch sport.

    Throughout Arkle’s career and beyond the race programme bore no comparison to that of today. The better horses were virtually forced to run in handicaps and as such the races should have been competitive – personally I would like to see a return to that situation. Arkle’s Gold Cups were relatively uncompetitive because at level weights the opposition didn’t think it was worth turning up – slightly different to the large field that took on Kauto Star in March.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 31 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.