Today in Racing, Dec 16, 2013

Wanted to go back to yesterday’s post to clarify: Seems as if one sees two different versions of what I embedded from Twitter, depending on whether one is looking at the individual post or via the main site URL.  Ah, the wonders and magic of the internet. Anyway, this was Craig’s more complete explanation of his reasoning behind the speed figures for the two stakes at Hollywood on Saturday, in which he split the variant for the two races. Check back to the post for more details.

Screen Shot 2013-12-16 at 11.26.33 AM – The Queens County Stakes is one of the many New York stakes races which have seen better days.  Formerly a handicap event, it’s not that it was ever amongst the most prestigious of stakes races here, but it varied between Grade 2 and 3 status, and the list of winners includes some really solid B-types such as Hail the Pirates, It’s Freezing, Cox’s Ridge, Fool’s Prayer, Country Pine and, more recently, Magna Graduate, Ron the Greek, and, possibly my least favorite horse of all time, Evening Attire.

The most recent edition was run in the snow on Saturday; and while a crowd of 26,381 was on hand to see It’s Freezing win in 1976, it no doubt takes at least two racing weeks at the Big A to attract that many now, and probably half of them are repeat visitors.  Not sure where Jonesy Boy ($15.60) will ultimately rank in the long list of Queens County Handicap/Stakes winners.  But he has never been worse than second by 3/4’s of a length in his six career starts (6-4-2-0).  And he did earn a solid TFUS speed figure of 106, a career top by 18 points.

Jonesy Boy is by Smarty Jones, and if you go back deep into his pedigree, you’ll find several instances of War Admiral, who won the Queens County in 1938…..and who most definitely was not a B-type!  This is the photo that appeared the next day in the New York Times.Screen Shot 2013-12-16 at 12.28.11 PMJonesy Boy is out of an Olympio mare who’s a half-sister to Volponi, who I’d say barely even qualifies for B status despite winning the BC Classic in 2002 by a 6 1/2 length margin which still stands as the race’s largest margin of victory.  Talk about a perfect trip!

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