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Old 07-05-2020, 12:59 PM   #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by castaway01 View Post
I just got a private message from Tacitus and he's sick of all of you too.
Thats too bad. Horses take criticism a lot better than people do...usually.
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Old 07-05-2020, 01:05 PM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Fischer View Post
"sucker horse"? "finds a way to lose races"? - this is the false narrative


If you are defending that he isn't an all-time great, - you're missing the joke
I don't think even the skeptics took it that far (at least among serious players). The issue has always been that he was impressive in the Wood and made some fans (myself among them).

Then the excuses started for all the losses.

1. In the Derby he was taking mud, wide and got taken up before finishing well

2. In the Belmont he would won except that he got hung wide on a good rail day.

3. In the Jim Dandy he stumbled badly at the start costing him about 3 lengths and then went to the rail in the stretch when that was worst part of the track.

4. In the Travers they put blinkers on him and he was used aggressively early near the rail on a bad rail day in the one race they probably should have backed off and closed outside.

5. I'm still searching for the excuse in the Gold Cup/Saudi Cup

6. In he OP handicap the "pace was supposedly too slow" even though every set of pace figures I've seen suggest the pace was average and the race flowed the way it did because the best horses were up front

When you look at his career, you see a very nice horse that was probably best in couple of races he lost, but MY MAIN POINT is that you also see a 3yo that was not progressing much figure-wise if you adjust the races for trip and a horse that couldn't overcome any adversity.

So while the biggest fans were focusing on trips and races he probably should have won, IMO they were missing the bigger picture that he wasn't progressing much since the Wood, was falling behind horses that were making progress, and wasn't as good as people once hoped.

I'm not so sure why it's such a big deal other than people dig into positions and refuse to change their mind even when new evidence comes in. I was big fan, bet on him a couple times, saw he wasn't going to be as good as I thought, and adjusted my thinking.
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Last edited by classhandicapper; 07-05-2020 at 01:08 PM.
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Old 07-05-2020, 01:06 PM   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by castaway01 View Post
I just got a private message from Tacitus and he's sick of all of you too.
Post of the day.
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Old 07-05-2020, 01:29 PM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classhandicapper View Post
MY MAIN POINT is that you also see a 3yo that was not progressing much figure-wise if you adjust the races for trip and a horse that couldn't overcome any adversity.

So while the biggest fans were focusing on trips and races he probably should have won, IMO they were missing the bigger picture that he wasn't progressing much since the Wood, was falling behind horses that were making progress, and wasn't as good as people once hoped.
Who are all these horses he was falling behind?

The only horse of significance to separate himself definitively from Tacitus is Code of Honor. Maximum Security was a few lengths better than him in the KY Derby and remained so in Saudi Arabia (whether he will remain so sans Jason Servis--especially at 10f--remains to be seen). Tax has not been able to validate his form reversal on Tacitus in the Jim Dandy and appears to have tailed off compeletly (goose eggs in 2020 and no recent works).

Note that these quasi-tough horses that supposedly ran him off his feet at Oaklawn all came back to be obliterated against Grade 1 rivals.

I'd say Tacitus has more upside going forward than any of them.
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Old 07-05-2020, 01:35 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dilanesp View Post
This was what I said on the first page of this thread:



He was finding ways to lose races at the class level he was at, while a devoted fanbase kept on making excuses for him. So they dropped him into an easier spot, and he took care of business. I don't see how I was wrong about any of this.
You don't see how you are wrong about anything despite the opposite being true the vast majority of the time.

Making excuses? Five wide trips at 12F against a gold rail, while losing to a horse that saved ground for over ten of those furlongs is hardly a fabricated excuse. Just as stumbling badly at the start and then ending up on a dead rail, and losing another close one is also not a BS excuse. Trying to close into a moderate pace that completely holds together, and significantly outperforming the other closers, is also not a phony excuse. This is all race analysis. It's not manufactured. It's legitimate. That doesn't make him the best horse in the country, but it sure makes him better than his results, which are better than almost any horse of his generation. You seem determined to let some bizarre personal animus cloud your thinking about this horse. I may disagree with you a lot, to say the least, but you are a very bright guy. Use those smarts to be less biased and you will stop joining a herd mentality that completely gets this horse wrong.
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Old 07-05-2020, 02:03 PM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classhandicapper View Post
... the excuses started for all the losses.

1. In the Derby ..
2. In the Belmont ...
3. In the Jim Dandy ...
4. In the Travers...
5. I'm still searching for the excuse in the Gold Cup/Saudi Cup
6. In he OP handicap ..


When you look at his career, you see a very nice horse that was probably best in couple of races he lost, but MY MAIN POINT is that you also see a 3yo that was not progressing much figure-wise if you adjust the races for trip and a horse that couldn't overcome any adversity.
...
I respect your main point (maturity/improvement as a 4yo, and in general after adversity)

I really don't have a competent opinion there.
I don't necessarily see the game like that. I have to yield to yourself and others(Class, Andy, Cj, etc...), as far the speed figures...

Visually, while he hasn't jumped out as a late bloomer relative to his division, the things you'd expect to see from experience, are evident.

Form recap;
  • Kentucky Derby - was BSing w/ my buddy Paul Stock before the race, and I think we simultaneously said something like "Tacitus- about 3rd or 4th". Exactly where we both had him on tactical-speed/talent/projected-setup, etc..
  • Belmont - He was clearly best. What can I say? He ran the best race and was beaten by a better trip/ride.
  • Jim Dandy - memory not a strong suit, and too lazy to do any more HW on this debate, but didn't Tax run huge that day? Hats-off to team Tax and team Gargan, that was a memorable peak race for a likeable horse. Maybe Tacitus had a chart comment? but my awful memory claims that Tax simply ran a big one.
  • Travers- ? who the hell needs an excuse for a nice effort like that?
  • JCGC - I bet Vino with BOTH FISTS! (albeit, very small sums of cash in each hand ), and I was right, Vino fired a huge effort, and somehow Code of Honor also fired a huge effort, and then the stewards abjectly switched away from their standard procedure during the meet and disallowed herding. If you took Tacitus here you were wrong, and two huge efforts beat him.
  • Saudi Cup - Two huge efforts won (MaximumSteroidity& Midnight Bisou), but I think I only watched a highlight of the stretch. If you picked Tacitus here, you were wrong.
  • Oaklawn Handicap - Looked like a terrible underlay. I made a token bet against Tacitus in the Double and exacta. Awful post, and I wasn't in the camp that he was pointed hard to the race. Somehow he ran 4th. Was impressive and surprised me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dilanesp View Post
This was what I said on the first page of this thread:



He was finding ways to lose races at the class level he was at, while a devoted fanbase kept on making excuses for him. So they dropped him into an easier spot, and he took care of business. I don't see how I was wrong about any of this.
That's kinda the point Dilan.

tough to read into a message-board comment, but you are at best getting close to the silly place, where irrational 'haters' of Tacitus (were they unable, as gamblers, to pick spots during the last 7?) assign some mystical 'aversion to winning' to the horse.


Quote:
Originally Posted by castaway01 View Post
I just got a private message from Tacitus and he's sick of all of you too.


good one.
some needed comic-relief from those who think Tacitus "finds ways to lose", or that Mr. Buff (rather than being over-the-top, and failing to fire) read the Racing Form and lost because it was in name, a G2 in open-company.
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Old 07-05-2020, 02:42 PM   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the little guy View Post
You don't see how you are wrong about anything despite the opposite being true the vast majority of the time.

Making excuses? Five wide trips at 12F against a gold rail, while losing to a horse that saved ground for over ten of those furlongs is hardly a fabricated excuse. Just as stumbling badly at the start and then ending up on a dead rail, and losing another close one is also not a BS excuse. Trying to close into a moderate pace that completely holds together, and significantly outperforming the other closers, is also not a phony excuse. This is all race analysis. It's not manufactured. It's legitimate. That doesn't make him the best horse in the country, but it sure makes him better than his results, which are better than almost any horse of his generation. You seem determined to let some bizarre personal animus cloud your thinking about this horse. I may disagree with you a lot, to say the least, but you are a very bright guy. Use those smarts to be less biased and you will stop joining a herd mentality that completely gets this horse wrong.
There's an argument to be made that the rail was good for the Met and the Suburban, especially considering Parsimony putting away Mr. Buff, and Network Effect running 2nd to Vekoma after a perfect rail trip.
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Old 07-05-2020, 07:33 PM   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GMB@BP View Post
Thats too bad. Horses take criticism a lot better than people do...usually.
I tried to talk him down, but he just kept stomping his foot. On second thought, he might trying to tell me to bet the 2-4 exacta in the 3rd. I should have been more specific.
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Old 07-05-2020, 07:53 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the little guy View Post
You don't see how you are wrong about anything despite the opposite being true the vast majority of the time.

Making excuses? Five wide trips at 12F against a gold rail, while losing to a horse that saved ground for over ten of those furlongs is hardly a fabricated excuse. Just as stumbling badly at the start and then ending up on a dead rail, and losing another close one is also not a BS excuse. Trying to close into a moderate pace that completely holds together, and significantly outperforming the other closers, is also not a phony excuse. This is all race analysis. It's not manufactured. It's legitimate. That doesn't make him the best horse in the country, but it sure makes him better than his results, which are better than almost any horse of his generation. You seem determined to let some bizarre personal animus cloud your thinking about this horse. I may disagree with you a lot, to say the least, but you are a very bright guy. Use those smarts to be less biased and you will stop joining a herd mentality that completely gets this horse wrong.
Thank you for a substantive response. Seriously, I appreciate that.

I think the line between "race analysis" and "excuses" is when there a horse strings together several of those sorts of races, a rational handicapper can conclude that the horse finds a way to lose.

As for "animus", I simply felt- and guess I still feel, despite his nice win over a nothing field- that the horse has been overrated. The people making excuses/race analysis about this horse have been very vocal about it. Whereas I was sitting here saying "he's losing over and over again, he always has an excuse, drop him in class!".

Now if this race is the springboard to a string of successes in the handicap division for Tacitus, I will gladly come back to this thread and admit I was wrong. But as of now, I still want to see Tacitus run against a legitimate field and beat them on the square. The Suburban was a very nice win, but he still has to answer a class question.
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Old 07-05-2020, 09:23 PM   #85
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So, let's make the list of horses from Tacitus's crop that we can clearly say are better than him.

Code of Honor

Vekoma at least up to one mile

Anyone else?

Not Maximum Security until he proves it going forward.

Not Mucho Gusto who lost to him fair and square in the Travers.

Not Game Winner who finished behind him in the Derby.

Improbable? Maybe but Tacitus drowned him the one time they met.

Anyone else?

Volatile? Maybe but tough to compare and Tacitus is much more accomplished at this point.
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Old 07-05-2020, 09:31 PM   #86
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Not Maximum Security until he proves it going forward?

Wow.
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Old 07-05-2020, 09:33 PM   #87
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Wow.
What was the confusing part? I think even GMB can explain this one to you.
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Old 07-05-2020, 09:35 PM   #88
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I just got a private message from Tacitus and he's sick of all of you too.
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Old 07-05-2020, 10:27 PM   #89
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What was the confusing part? I think even GMB can explain this one to you.

Actually I don't think anyone can explain that.
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Old 07-05-2020, 11:31 PM   #90
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Mott all over the place with trainerspeak post-race regarding maturity, blinkers, and the horse's next start.

I don't know what anyone else thought, but to me it looked like John Velasquez had a vise-grip for the first 1/2 mile or so on the colt who was pulling hard early (as might be anticipated w/ the addition of blinkers).

At any rate, Mott a bit contradictory here regarding the blinkers:

“It seemed to help quite a bit. The maturity and the blinkers all kind of seemed to come together,” Mott said.

Usually, when a horse matures it doesn't pull in the first part of the race and furthermore you usually see trainers remove blinkers as the horse gains some level of professionalism (see Alydar, Alysheba, Susan's Girl, Pleasant Tap, Tiznow).

Contradicts himself here, too, regarding why the blinkers were supposedly effective:

"It seems to make him level off a little more and stay in the bridle a little more," Mott said.

So the blinkers put him in the race and make him switch off at the same time?

At any rate, I'm sure there were some audible groans from the press members who were present when the following tasty tidbit on the colt's future was spewed. Not sure if a COVID-19 face mask would have protected the listener from instantaneous physical illness:

Mott said Tacitus would target “one or the other” between the Grade 1, $750,000 Whitney at nine furlongs on August 1 or the Grade 1, $500,000 Woodward at ten furlongs at Saratoga on Sept. 5.

I don't think even Todd Pletcher has found a way to avoid running in both races when they are over 4 weeks apart...
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