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Group 1 / Classic Regulations

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  • #4310
    Zoz
    Member
    • Total Posts 703

    No gelding can run in the Epsom Derby.

    They can run in the Kentucky Derby, and this year one won.

    Should he have been in the race?

    My personal argument is that, if a horse is worth breeding from, his influence will be shown in more than one race, yet after Continent’s winning the July Cup last year, many people called for geldings to be ruled out of Group Ones.

    What are your thoughts? I think a racehorse is a racehorse and if it can contend then it can race.

    Anyone else?

    #102859
    Kotkijet
    Member
    • Total Posts 226

    The idea of excluding a championship horse from a championship race because it’s impotent is awful. The sport of kings has already been pillaged by the breeding programme and discrimination at the highest level is absurd.

    #102861
    Nick Hatton
    Member
    • Total Posts 399

    IMHO geldings should definitely be allowed to run in any Group race or Championship race.

    Have I just agreed with Kotkijet ?!?! :biggrin:

    #102863
    Zoz
    Member
    • Total Posts 703

    Pillaged by the breeding programme?

    How else can you sustain the breed?

    But I do agree that the best horse should be allowed to race and indeed win if it can – why should the second best horse win just because it hasn’t been violated by a guy with rubber gloves, and then father part of the next generation?

    The breeding programme is there to sustain the thoroughbred, if  a champion is bred it should be allowed to race in its class, gelded or not.

    #102864
    Grey Desire
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1913

    I know what you mean Nick!!

    #102865
    Kotkijet
    Member
    • Total Posts 226

    What I meant by our sport being hurt by breeding is that the better horses never, IMO, get an opportunity to prove themselves enough to obtain cult popularity. If one was to ask Joe Bloggs who Desert Orchid, Dark Fountain or Red Rum were then Joe would say horses but ask him who Dr Devious was and he wouldn’t have a clue!                                          Was Sinndar better than Galileo? Absolutely, but their stud values do not reflect this. Had Sinndar stayed on and thrashed Galileo then Sinndar would have got more and the breeding programme would be more efficient. Finally, wouldn’t football be a farce if Niko Anelka & Robbie Fowler were retired to stud at the age of 17?

    #102866
    RexWayne
    Member
    • Total Posts 405

    Absolutely agree with the previous comment

    #102867
    Meshaheer
    Member
    • Total Posts 486

    I think entire horses/colts etc should be kept on longer. I know stud is big business but even so, retiring them at 3 is a farce in my opinion.

    I don’t think geldings should run in Classics but other Group Ones maybe. There are sound reasons for running top geldings but if there were a flood of geldings winning top races (unlikely I know) it would somewhat degrade the Classic races, and it’s nice to know a Classic winner will be off to stud.

    It’s also nice with top geldings i.e Persian Punch that stay around forever, and Kokijet’s points are very sound ones indeed.

    Overall I’m a bit sitting-on-the-fence but I’ll take the middle line. Continent’s July Cup – good stuff but it was far from a vintage July Cup. I can’t really see many geldings winning Group Ones.

    #102870
    Tete Rouge
    Participant
    • Total Posts 119

    I think geldings should definitely be allowed to run in Group races, Championship races, whatever.

    And I’m definitely in favour of keeping horses in training longer – with the obvious caveat that some don’t train on anyway.  This year could see some sublime clashes – Sulamani, High Chaparral and so on up against Dalakhani, etc?  Even I, a dyed in the wool NH fan, would love to see that ….

    (Edited by Tete Rouge at 7:08 pm on May 11, 2003)

    #102873
    Sal
    Member
    • Total Posts 562

    I’m quite happy for horses like Continent and Royal Rebel to win their Championship grade races, and I don’t particularly believe that it devalues the race for them to win it – best horse on the day and all that.

    However, I think there is quite a strong argument against geldings being allowed to run in Classics.  From a breeding point of view the outstanding performers should be able to go to stud.  Forbidding geldings from running in the 2000 Guineas and Derby (s, I suppose) should encourage owners/trainers of colts with ability NOT to geld them unless absolutely necessary.  

    Another reason being that if an owner/trainer is stupid enough to geld a colt with Classic talent (and thereby miss out on potential millions in stud fees) then they shouldn’t be credited with producing a Classic winner.<br>:)

    #102875
    Happy Jack
    Participant
    • Total Posts 515

    It seems very unfair that if a colt with Classic potential has to be gelded due to illness/injury or whatever, that they are ruled out of running in a Classic.<br>Anyway, from my memory, no gelding in this country in recent years has been good enough to be a possible Classic contender (but I’m sure someone will correct me!), so isn’t this a rather hypothetical argument? :biggrin:

    #102877
    johnjdonoghue
    Member
    • Total Posts 994

    Happyjack,

    Somnus is a gelding, he would have been a 2000 Guineas entry, on his form with Tout Seul, he would also have been a contender.

    JJD

    #102878
    Happy Jack
    Participant
    • Total Posts 515

    Cheers for pointing out about Somnus being a gelding John, I’d forgotten about him – although to be fair he looked all over a sprinter last season and if he was a colt I doubt whether connections would have been thinking Guineas.

    (Edited by Happy Jack at 3:23 pm on May 12, 2003)

    #102880
    rory
    Participant
    • Total Posts 2685

    Sal,

    are you suggesting that allowing geldings to run in the classics would lead to an increase in the proportion of the classic generation being gelded – surely not?

    The point about the best horses being able to go to stud is fine, but if the best of the entires isn’t good enough to beat a gelding, then should he be allowed to hold such a lofty position?

    I’m trying to think of a genuine would be classic contender who was a gelding. Teleprompter was top class, but not as a three year old.

    #102883
    Sal
    Member
    • Total Posts 562

    Actually that is what I am suggesting Rory!  It’s not so much possibly of vast numbers of geldings that I would worry about, more the types of colt that would get snipped.

    Geldings are generally easier (and probably cheaper!) to train – usually you can mix them with fillies and they have less temperament issues than colts, they concentrate more on their work.

    Therefore, if you have a 2yo colt with ability but maybe a bit of a temperament issue you would have the choice over the winter whether to geld him or not.

    A Galileo or a Dalakhani is an easy decision – a colt as fashionably-bred as those two will have stallion value, whether or not they perform to their full potential on the racecourse. You wouldn’t geld them – even if it meant they would never win another race.

    However, if your colt wasn’t the darling of the yearling sales, from an unfashionable background, then you would be tempted to geld him.  If he looks like having no stallion future without a race record and gelding will improve his performance, why not?  Maximise his win money rather than settle for a small stallion fee. Isn’t it even better if you can still enter him for all the Classics?  

    NO!  Imagine if that had happened to a colt like Celtic Swing.  He could still have been second in the Guineas and won the French Derby – but he could never have become a sire, and his successful bloodlines would not have been passed on.  Decisions would be made on the basis of current trends, rather than future stellar performances.

    I guess this is back to my personal bugbear of extending the gene pool, instead of only a few select bloodlines being deemed fashionable enough to produce stallions.  Horses make fools out of all of us, and I think there would be quite a few wrong decisions made if it became an option.    

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