After an almost 2 year Horseless stretch, Princess Kathy Racing & Red Rabbit Racing were ecstatic at the debut of their 3 year old colt,
NOVGOROD THE GREAT
Princess Kathy had claimed the colt, in his first ever race, at the end of last year for a rock bottom price of 15k. In that race - as a 31/1 shot - he ran a very game 2nd, just 3/4 of a length off the lead. We then sold a half interest in the mule to Red Rabbit Racing.
On the back of that great, inaugural effort we decided to take a big upward jump with our boy in this race running him in a Maiden 50k claimer on the turf at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans. Unfortunately with all the Pandemic restrictions, none of us could go down and watch the race. Damn!
Jockey Jose Lopez was aboard - you may remember him as the pilot for our prior horse Majestic Hero - who was the 2nd biggest dud we ever had. He was resplendent in the Yellow and Pink of Princess Kathy Racing's colors. Trainer Block's instructions were to settle him out of the gate, relax him on the back stretch and come with a BIG Move down the lane. It did not go to plan.....
Novgorod left the gate slowly with this 8 horse field, and decided that his 3rd stride would be a JUMP rather than keep running. Then as he was last entering the 1st turn, our colt decided he would rather run in the Parking Lot rather than turn left to stay on the turf course. Jockey Lopez had to yank on his head to get him to turn to the left. So as we approach the head of the backstretch - where Jockey Lopez was instructed to relax our boy - instead the Colt bolted and went from last to 2nd in scarcely 2 furlongs.
HE DAMN NEAR PULLED JOSE'S ARMS OUT OF THEIR SOCKETS.
So we're 2nd as we enter the Stretch and we're all waiting for him to collapse in the Stretch from his run up the backstretch. But alas our boy has heart and hung on gamely for 3rd place, earning us our 1st check in quite a while. Check out his move down the backstretch in the video.
After the race, he didn't want to stop running so the Outrider had to go get him to bring him back to be unsaddled. Obviously in this his 2nd race - he needs to learn more about racing.
He came back to the barn winded but fine. We are already looking for his next race.
BUT THIS RACE SHOWED US OUR BOY HAS TWO THINGS YOU CAN'T TEACH...
SPEED AND HEART!