December 3: Here & There

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Well, it’s taken a few weeks but Joe and Sean have finally listened to their recorders and deciphered their programs from the Colonial Cup while Tom has offered insight of life at Saratoga in December. Here is your Here and There from Camden and Saratoga, with a quote from a Hall of Fame flat trainer in there, too.

Worth Repeating

“I think he’s an unusually talented horse.” – Trainer Shug McGaughey on Honor Code – three weeks before the 2-year-old won the Remsen at Aqueduct

“I’m glad I didn’t say ‘If Bodie Island wins the Hobkirk Hill I’ll run through the Lexus Tent naked.’ ” – Trainer Richard Valentine, on a surprise win at the Colonial Cup (so are we)

“Isn’t it great that he encourages the other horses.” – Owner Betty Merck, about her horse Kingdom (who took a five-race losing streak into the season’s final day); he discouraged them with a win in the year’s final jump race.

“I’ll let you tie me, but I’m not going to let you pass me.” – Trainer Jonathan Sheppard, to rival Jack Fisher, after Fisher won two at the Colonial Cup to knot the trainers’ standings

“Where’s he going? The barn?” – Trainer Janet Elliot, on what she thought when Alajmal drifted out in the Colonial Cup stretch

“That was the bitterest pill I’ve ever had to swallow . . . but life goes on. We won the Colonial Cup.” – Elliot, on the disqualification of Campanile (owned by Greg Hawkins like Alajmal) in the 2000 Carolina Cup over the course

“Joe beguiled us.” – Owner Vicki Crawford, on the salesmanship of trainer Joe Davies and getting back in the game with steeplechaser Touchdowntony

“What, are you quitting?” – Veteran jump jockey Xavier Aizpuru – who’s not retiring – to jockey Jeff Murphy’s ‘It’s been a pleasure riding with you’ statement after the Colonial Cup

“Paddy, congratulations. Let me get a picture.” – Trainer Ricky Hendriks, to champion jockey Paddy Young

“A better man won it.” – Jockey Darren Nagle, after losing the jockey’s title by one win to Paddy Young

“I don’t know why I’m crying.” – Young, walking back with his fourth championship

“It’s nice to have a job on the weekends that you don’t need to wear ear plugs.” – Photographer Jamie Price, while photographing horses at the Colonial Cup rather than car races

“It looks like a fox hunt.” – Trainer Jack Fisher, watching the slow pace of the timber race at the Colonial Cup

“Hey, Sean…Sean…the skinny one.” – Fisher, when getting the attention of Sean Flanagan (the jockey) and Sean Clancy (the writer)

“He did that for fun.” – Fisher, after Schoodic won his second consecutive start over hurdles

“Well done, Paddy. Well done, Grumpy.” – The ever-quotable Fisher to jockey Paddy Young and trainer Tom Voss after winning the finale with Kingdom

“Bernie.” – Two-year-old Zeke Washer, while riding on the shoulders of owner/trainer/grandfather Dave Washer, when asked about his idol (evidently it’s Bernie Dalton)

“Alajmal veered there…Alajmal with the lead…on the inside Barnstorming might be heard from today…Alajmal comes back…Alajmal…Aizpuru has the Colonial Cup…” – Announcer Tony Bentley describing the final stages of the Colonial Cup

“He hasn’t won but he’s always been placed, everything fell into place today. He’s very, very clever. If anything, he’s too clever over timber.” – Jockey Sean Flanagan, after winning the Springdale Open Timber with Straight To It

“I missed half the year so to be that close, I’m happy enough with that.” – Flanagan, after finishing third in the title race

“It’s almost ironic that the people who are making living off of it are the ones creating the problems.” – RCI Chairman Duncan Patterson on the issue of drug compounders

“Basically for three years I trained racehorses. We ran mostly at Charles Town, had a big win in the Marathon Handicap at Charles Town, then I realized that this really sucked as far as making a living.” – Patterson, chairman of Association of Racing Commissioners International and Delaware Thoroughbred Racing Commission, talking about what he did before a successful career as a realtor in the Mid-Atlantic

“Now you know I can talk right?” – Sandra Salmen, head of horsemen’s relations at Fair Grounds, when asked to talk about a horse her father campaigned

“You didn’t tell me about all the people who get depressed around here in the winter because it’s dark all the time.” – Longtime Kentucky resident Elizabeth Collins, sales rep for Thoro-Bred Feed and wife of TIHR’s Tom Law, after wrapping up sales calls late Monday afternoon and well into darkness after sunset at 4:21 p.m.

By The Numbers

1,126.9: Miles driven by TIHR’s Joe Clancy in 56 hours from Fair Hill to Camden, S.C. and back for the Colonial Cup.

6: Colonial Cup victories for trainer Janet Elliot. Victorian Hill in 1990, Declare Your Wish in 1993, Correggio in 1996, Flat Top in 1998 and 2002, Alajmal in 2012.

1: Number of Sallee vans parked in the lot on the corner of Union and East Avenues in Saratoga more than two weeks after training ended for the season at the Oklahoma Training Track.

1: Van from Camden to Monkton: 4 hurdle rolls, 9 bags of fat wood, 2 kids, 2 horses.

Names of the Week

All The Way Jose: The 3-year-old Jonathan Sheppard homebred is by Senor Swinger out of Maternity Leave.

Bodie Island. The Elkstone Group’s homebred is out of Sweet Carolina. Formed in the 1700s, the island (pronounced body) itself is technically no longer an island but is part of the Outer Banks area in North Carolina.