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Pacemaker – Right or Wrong?

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  • #4519
    Bigmelly
    Member
    • Total Posts 10

    I have just noticed that connections have paid £20,000 to supplement a pacemaker for Authorized for the Eclipse on Saturday.

    Now I appreciate that this practice has gone on for years and whilst I see the reasons why, is this really showing us the best horse.

    Maybe a bit of a romantic but I would like to see every race run on its own merits and if the horse is good enough it will win. If Authoized needs a strongly run race then go out and make the running and run the others into the ground.

    I appreciate some may think this is a rather mute point but does it devalue racing or the winner of a race that they needed a pacemaker to assist.

    #105914
    non vintage
    Member
    • Total Posts 1268

    I’ve got no beef with the use of a pacemaker.

    The connections of the Derby winner are interested in winning lots of money and enhancing the value of their horse at stud.

    In this case, there is a good chance that there will be a smallish field and it is clear that their horse stays well and is very talented.

    A slowly-run race over 10f which develops into a half-mile sprint would not play to the strengths of their horse – they might lose a race that they believe they can win. Employing a pacemaker is surely the sensible option…

    #105924
    Kotkijet
    Member
    • Total Posts 226

    I agree with NV.

    Authorized is a top class performer although as evident in previous outings, he would only be top class if he’s able to come off a good pace.

    In that sense, only the presence of a pacemaker would ensure he should run up to his true merit.

    Also, the pacemaker in question, Champery, has shown better than useful form when able to make the running so he should also be able to give his true running.

    #105953
    Meshaheer
    Member
    • Total Posts 486

    I don’t have any issues with the use of a pacemaker providing he doesn’t hinder the opposition or not run to his true merits (both of which are unlikely).

    Hopefully Champery will help to ensure a free and fair fight between Authorized and George Washington :)

    #105954
    davidbrady
    Member
    • Total Posts 3901

    I have more of an issue with track watering to the detriment of fast-ground horses but I suppose it comes down to what constitutes team tactics and what constitutes spoiling tactics. We’ve had a couple of incidents of gamesmanship over the last couple of seasons, most notably:

    [list:1erw07or]Ballydoyle running Spanish Harlem to spoil Boscobel in Sunday’s Irish Derby

    Coolmore vs Godolphin in the QE2 last year where Seamus Heffernan on Ivan Denisovich was charged of spoiling tactics against Frankie on Librettist

    The delibrate cut-throat gallop set by Handel and High Country in the Irish Derby in 2003 which resulted in Soumillion on Dalakhani being left in no-mans land which set the race up for Johnny Murtagh on Alamshar (post race Murtagh stated that the Irish jockeys agreed those tactics for that reason)

    Even Kieran Fallon walking down to the start in North Light’s Derby in 2004 resulting in the rest of the field sweating up to some extent while waiting for him to arrive at the start could be argued to be gamesmanship.
    [/list:u:1erw07or]

    It’s up to every owner/trainer/breeder to ensure the most favourable conditions for their runners but it bugs me that people see a Gr1 winner who quickens from the front of a slow-run tactical race as inferior to one who wins off a true pace

    #105966
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    • Total Posts 17718

    If I were in such a position, I wouldn’t dream of running Authorized without a pacemaker.
    He is in exactly the same position as Motivator was a couple of years ago; impressive winner of the RP Trophy, Dante and Derby on his last 3 starts. All proper tests, and all thrown away in the Eclipse (at shorter odds than Authorized) for the lack of a proper pace, that surely would not do justice?

    #105968
    FlatSeasonLover
    Member
    • Total Posts 2065

    A pacemaker is within the rules of the game so I dno’t see why its unfair. And from a racing perpsective surely its better to see races run at a championship pace so we can see which the classy animals really are rather than ending with a sprint finish after a crawl?

    #105972
    Kingston Town
    Member
    • Total Posts 1049

    They don’t allow pacemakers in Australia – every horse has to run on its merits – but if it’s in the rules then why not?

    The only thing – what’s the betting like on these pacemakers who generally speaking cannot win? Are the punters smart enough over there not to back them?

    I think that’s why it’s not allowed in Australia (and other places) because some people will put money on anything….

    #105978
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    • Total Posts 17718

    They don’t allow pacemakers in Australia – every horse has to run on its merits – but if it’s in the rules then why not?

    The only thing – what’s the betting like on these pacemakers who generally speaking cannot win? Are the punters smart enough over there not to back them?

    I think that’s why it’s not allowed in Australia (and other places) because some people will put money on anything….

    Errmm…..every horse has to run on its merits in the UK also. The difference is how loosely the rules are interpreted.
    The following piece of English doublespeak should clarify?

    Even though the horses come from different stables the role is unlikely to fall foul of any Horseracing Regulatory Authority rules on pacemaking as long as Champery runs on his merits, according to director of regulation
    Malcolm Wallace.

    “The HRA is of the opinion that the rules of racing do not prohibit the running of horses as pacemakers as such, provided they run on their merits,” he said.
    “It’s absolutely fine to set the pace, but going wide and taking one with you or coming off the fence to let another one through is not.

    “If we know that a pacemaker or suspected pacemaker is running, one of the stipendaries (stewards) will remind the jockey that he must ride out for the best possible placing even if his race appears to have been run.”
    [/i]

    The essential difference being other racing jurisdictions don’t work on the ‘nod and a wink’ principle, so their rules actually have to mean what they say. :lol:

    #105979
    Kingston Town
    Member
    • Total Posts 1049

    Oh I seeeeeeee, yes a bit open to interpretation there ay?

    So do people back these things that ‘can’t’ win? :shock:

    #105995
    naps
    Member
    • Total Posts 159

    Kingston, anyone who follows the racing game will know that the pacemaker is in the race for that very purpose so if they choose to back him it’s entirely up to them. Pacemakers have been known to win these Gp 1’s in the past. I recall Godolphin’s pacemaker Fly To The Stars doing just that several years ago, although Champery would have to improve a huge amount to be involved on Saturday.

    #106005
    Kingston Town
    Member
    • Total Posts 1049

    Yes exactly they should know what is going on – it’ll take a bit of getting used to these pacemakers when I get back – we’ve never had them before (well there’s been a few obvious ones here, but the less said about that the better…… )

    #106011
    Anzum
    Member
    • Total Posts 256

    Didn’t Summoner with one of the Hills brothers riding, win a group 1 as a supposed pacemaker?

    #106014
    naps
    Member
    • Total Posts 159

    Yes Anzum. It was the QEII with Richard Hills on board and with a soft lead he was able to beat his stablemate Noverre.

    #106017
    SirHarryLewis
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1208

    Yes exactly they should know what is going on – it’ll take a bit of getting used to these pacemakers when I get back – we’ve never had them before (well there’s been a few obvious ones here, but the less said about that the better…… )

    The trick with the pacemaker is to have a horse good enough to win if he is ignored by the main body of horses. While we say he cant win, the truth is that in theory he will try, and he will be able to, if his ability is not taken seriously by the others. The disciplinary body have no complaints with this concept. I suppose everybody knows where they stand.

    SHL

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