I say that because while California Chrome was running his second exhausting race in two weeks, a number of his Derby rivals simply sat out the Preakness, with their owners hoping to keep them fresh for an ambush of what they hope will be a fatigued California Chrome in the Belmont.
This seems wrong to me. I think racing would be better served by a system requiring all Kentucky Derby starters to also commit to running in the other two legs of the Triple Crown as long as they’re physically able.
Of course, these days many trainers refuse to run horses that frequently in such a short span. But how about increasing the time between races so the Derby remains on the first Saturday in May, the Preakness runs the first Saturday in June and the July 4th weekend features the Belmont? No one could complain about undue stress on the horses, and all three races would be true all-star showdowns.
Yes, it would be a tweak in tradition. But one that could help the larger tradition thrive.
Call and tell us what you think.
I’m Bill Lamb and that’s my Point of View.