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Contact: George William Smith
#102, 10808  84th Avenue NW, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, T6E 2J2   email preferred to document the discussions  Email thematchmaker@shaw.ca

I Have been an owner, trainer, breeder, bettor and spectator [since 1953], this year's Derby was complete crap in my opinion...and not humble, either.  Last year's Derby was a farce as they allowed Justify to canter and really only ran down the stretch.  Where were all the others trainers trying to win the race?  Instead they were content to follow and wow, what a surprise, their horses were done...toast, Kaput.  It seemed as if everyone was taking a chance that Justify would not be able to make a mile and a quarter.  With today's pharmacies negating hay, oats and water [see letter below], the game was afoot as Sherlock Holmes would say and they all lost.

I've seen some very bad Derbies, but 2019 was the worst.  Only one horse had run fast prior to the Derby and that was at Sunland Park and pavement
Yes, the Churchill track was sloppy, but track records are often set on sloppy tracks especially with a horse that leads the entire race.  Trainers know better than to let a speed horse set the fractions on a sloppy track.  The horses behind that leader are drenched in wet dirt and water and water is very heavy.  The track was still fast by the Pat Day Mile, a race in which the winner would have been 15 lengths on top of Maximum Security, but of course they were going a mile shorter.  The lesson last year was don't let a speed horse lead on an off track.  But apparently in 2019, the trainers and riders were all dumber that 2018.  I say just put a 126 pound rock on the back of the horse and tied it down and the first to circle the track wins.

Of course, after the race the Talking Heads full of mush were giving their opinions like I am now.  There is so much fake news out there that I was totally surprised when I accidentally turned from a golf channel to a news channel this morning and they were discussing whether the DQ was right or wrong.  Okay, I can listen to different points of view, I thought.  Boy, was I wrong.  The first expert said something so astoundingly wrong that I thought I was going to have to shower at my age with women at part of the sexual diversion process.  He said, "Kentucky and the other states in the U.S. are the only areas in the world that do not have uniform rules.  And if we had adopted those international rules, Maximum Security would have won the race.  I've got news for this twit.  Maximum Sercurity would have been taken down in 5 minutes in France and a winner in England.  The English always talk, talk, talk and act like GOD (sorry God, I believe).   It is always the margin of victory in England.  If a horse slaughters another horse on the course, then the British decide the horses fate by the winning margin.  In track and field, my sport, if one is cut off..they are toast because only God knows how much that runner had left...certainly not a human.  The French consider the incident more along the lines of how dangerous it was. 

After watch Kentucky Derby 2019, I saw at least 3 instances, the French and I and many other countries would have disqualified Maximum Security.  I assumed at the time that Maximum Securty had won the race so I didn't stay for the replay or the Official sign to go up.  I went for an hour run and walk.  I was so mad about the running of the race, I was thinking of never betting another race.  I didn't notice any interference where they eventually said there was, but saw it in other places and just assumed after 145 years and the favorite winning my bets were toast.

So here is part of my analysis after watching two replays at normal speed.  The fractions were 22.31, 46.62; which were fast for any Derby and especially since none of the field usually kept going at that speed.  They past the 6 furlongs in a slow 1:12.50 and watching the normal speed video I saw the field back up behind the leader he was going so slow.  Poor War Of Will!  Why the colt is still alive was based solely on the jockey's skill. 

When a horse approached from the outside to run with Maximum Securty his jockey let him run and a gap would form.  Nothing wrong with that.  But the jockey was a complete idiot though I like betting his rides because he is always trying to win it seems.  He would throttle his horse back.  Earth to Luis Saez, thoroughbred are not like cars that have disc brakes.  You just can't jam on the brakes.  In addition, his horse was running very green.  He was down tight on the rail, then come off and then a little more.  Three or four times Tyler Gaffalione had more than enough room to come through on the rail and War Of Will wanted to do just that.  War Of Will's front legs got so far ahead of Maximum Securities back legs that he was planting his hooves at the back of the saddle cloth.  Yet, Saez did not even glance inside.  Perhaps, Tyler was so scared that he was speechless.

Maximum Security went by the mile in 1:38.63, which usually meant in the old days, the French and others might be importing some supper.  I really don't think it was Luis fault when the horse drifted out badly interfering with the horses at that slow pace.  I think the horse was just green and Luis wanted Maximum Security to force them out further and he took them out to the 4 path and not the 3 path Luis wanted.  Imagine the surprise to War Of Will and Tyler.  After staying down in tight to the rail and Maximum Security cantering, Tyler took him off the rail before another horse came down on the opening was pushing through.  War Of Will was getting used to jamming on the brakes so to speak so he did not clip heals by the grace of God and 15 horses didn't land in a pile of horses falling left and right behind Luis.  In my opinion, though the horse was partly to blame, Luis would have gotten a free vacation of at least a month. 

What happened next was the result of the above action.  Maximum Security magically just happened to lug in badly and made contact with the horse that was driving through that big hole opened in front of him after Tyler abandoned the rail trying to go around Maximum Security.  In a nutshell, Maximum Security blew the turn causing mayhem at a pace that was still slow and then over corrected and would have crashed into the rail or close to it if another horse wasn't there to stop him.  It is quite possible that Maximum Security was acting like a stallion in the field...no way you're getting by me, I'll take you out and prevent you from passing me and then seeing the horse inside passing him, he responded quickly to give that horse no running room.  Is he that studish?  Was that the reason he was put in a claming race? 

There was only one horse in that race that benefited from the stop, then go, then stop then go and that was Maximum Security. 

Jason Service and how this horse went from a cheap claimer to crossing the finish line first in the Derby is not a mystery to me in my opinion.  He did not do it on hay, oats and water!  Reversal of form in some of his claims and long shot winners had me staying out of betting on a race with him as one of the trainers.  Can't prove it, because everyone knows that only stupid trainers can get caught in this day and age.

Congratulations to Josephine Abercrombie, owner of Pin Oak Stud for producing the sire, Alternation.  Alternation was a product of Seattle Slew out of 3 consecutive broodmares bred by Pin Oak.   Behind Seattle Slew in tail-female fashion were matings to Green Dancer and Iron Ruler.  Alternation is the sire of Serengetti Empress, the winner of the 2019 Kentucky Oaks.  I had the privilege of helping to research matings for some of her high-class broodmare band.  "Your credentials are so impressive that we wanted to have your imput."  (5/12/1994). 

What is more impressive is Josephine Abercrombie's stance on performance-enhancing drugs! 
August 31, 1998
I read with interest your newsletter and I certainly agree with you that we need to get back to hay, oats and water.

What about the role of veterinarians?  They should be barred from giving drugs that could be harmful to horses.  You notice that I said, "Could be".  Unless there's scientific proof than a drug is harmless, it should not be administered.

 Blood-Horse Photo of Serengetti Empress
Screen Shot Photo of Finish for Serengetti Empress

Mia Mischief wins $500,000 Grade 1 on Derby Day 2019  Another Matchmaker Connection

Head On Photo of Mia Mischief's Finish on Derby Day-Grade 1 Winner.

Three Hawk's Win picture with Ned Williams (blue jacket and ball cap)
Congratulations Ned Williams for another good winner.

Ned Williams is the man with the blue jacket and baseball cap.  A great guy and smart as a whip by pursuing excellence.  The win picture his The Hardest Way appears below.

The Hardest Way  
George Smith Young and Flying
George Smith: So young he thought he could fly!   Now, every day is a day to be lived with the wind at my back at any speed.

Sciatica and Sciatic nerve possible treatment

If you or your athlete has shin splints here is the link to my Shin Splint research and how to heal them forever!

What I learned from running track and field for 60 years: Download my tips here

Download here a True or False test on what you read in my Track Tips document above