Yesterday, I turned on Horse Racing Radio just in time to catch the ninth race at Gulfstream. I had heard none of the analysis, none of the pre-race discussion; I tuned in as the race was beginning, and the audio feed has already been shifted to the call of the race.
As a lifelong periodic table nerd, my ears perked up when I heard the announcer say “Dysprosium”. Even though i’m trying to become more educated and thoughtful about horse racing, sometimes I still can’t help but become interested in an arbitrary horse because of their name. This was one of those times. I started cheering for him, and he had the lead most of the race, though down the stretch he faded back to fourth.
Turns out, the race was a seven and a half furlong, $30,000-$25,000 claimer. Reading about Dysprosium’s racing history, the level and location sounded about right. A four year old Rock Hard Ten gelding out of the Fusaichi Pegasus mare Omi Diamond, he started his racing career this past summer with a 7 3/4 length win in a $25,000 maiden claimer at Calder on August 23. He followed that up with a 6 length win in the Needles Stakes, also at Calder, on September 14. After three following races (at Belmont, Aqueduct, and Gulfstream) where he wasn’t up for a tag but failed to hit the board, he dropped back into pure claiming company in the race yesterday.
I checked late last night to see if any of the horses were claimed out of the race. Turns out, Dysprosium was claimed: by Ken and Sarah Ramsey, with Mike Maker as trainer.
This claim has Claiming Crown written all over it.
The Ramseys and Maker are known to make claims specifically for Claiming Crown purposes. Assuming conditions for the races stay the same as for the 2013 Crown, the run for the $25,000 tag this past August means he’s eligible for the Emerald (8.5 furlongs) this year. The run for the $30,000 tag yesterday means he’s eligible for the Jewel (9 furlongs) as far out at 2015. The maiden race he won was at a mile; the Needles was run at 8.5 furlongs. He has done most of his racing in Florida, and the Claiming Crown will be at Gulfstream at least through 2015.
This just makes too much sense to me, and I will be keeping my eye on this horse not only because he has a fabulously nerdy name, but because I am sure he is being pointed toward at least one of these two races.