The Best of AndyScoggin

So much has happened since I began blogging in May of this year.  As the Monmouth Park Correspondent for my writing is showcased at Racing at the Jersey Shore for a website that gets over three million hits a year. I launched my personal racing blog, AndyScoggin in NJ at and later moved it to my own domain at

My articles have been picked up by the NTRA and several other websites that share information about racing. I contributed to an article that appeared on the Breeders’ Cup website. All of this has happened in a whirlwind seven months.

I must thank my managing editor, Brian Zipse for giving me the opportunity to join the staff of HRN. His guidance and kind words have been priceless. The racing crowd on TWITTER provides so much information, interest, and excitement. Most of all, I must thank my wife Cora for all of the encouragement and for allowing me the time to do all of this writing.

A special thank you goes out to everyone who has read any of my work, commented, or tweeted. It is up to all of us to keep racing vital.

I have selected some of my favorite pieces. They are listed in alphabetical order by title with an introductory paragraph and a link to the full article.

Breeders’ Cup Top 10 – The Sprint

The Sprint provides the most excitement per second in the Breeders’ Cup combining pure speed on the front end with the chance for a dramatic closing finish. All of this in less then a minute and ten seconds. In the 27 years of the Sprint only five favorites have won producing an average win payoff of $20.53. This top 10 list features great frontrunners and amazing victories from the back of the pack. From ten down to one, these races document the exciting history of the Breeders’ Cup Sprint.

Cigar’s Classic 1995 Breeders’ Cup

Cigar entered the 1995 Breeders Cup Classic riding an eleven race win streak that spanned back to his last two races of 1994. It was a streak in which Cigar had not run a Beyer Speed Figure less than a 104 and had earned figures above 110 in all but two of his races. He had won 8 grade one stakes at 6 different tracks on both the west and east coasts.

Collecting Horse Racing Memories

Monmouth Park’s biggest day of the year is the Haskell. There is great racing and a really big crowd. A lot of the crowd comes to increase their collection of racing memorabilia with the traditional Haskell Hat giveaway. Monmouth has been giving hats away since at least 1988.

I must admit that I, too, have some racing memorabilia, although my collections cover many areas, the least of which are hats. I am not sure why, but somehow it is important for me to have racing stuff.

Father’s Day Should Be a Family Day

June 19th is Father’s Day. It is the day when we Dads get to share our favorite activity with our family. So on Sunday at Monmouth Park you will see many families filing into the picnic area with coolers and grills, and Racing Forms tucked under arms – all to make sure that Dad has a great day.

Here are the Facts from Rapid Redux’s Winning Streak

Note: This article was picked up by the NTRA and linked on their Facebook page causing the busiest day in the short history of AndyScoggin in NJ.

Rapid Redux now shares the modern era record of 19 consecutive wins with Peppers Pride and Zenyatta. Rapid Redux took 10 months and 25 days to win 19 in a row. Zenyatta needed 2 years, 11 months, and 10 days to get to 19 victories. Peppers Pride reached the 19 wins in 3 years, 4 months, and 29 days.

The Legendary 1973 Whitney Handicap

It was 1973 and Secretariat was on his way to racing immortality, having just captured the first Triple Crown since Citation in 1948. The Meadow Stable star would go on to win three Eclipse awards that year: his second Horse of the Year title, best three year old colt, and top grass runner. Secretariat’s loss in the 1973 Whitney Handicap added to the legend of Saratoga as the “Graveyard of Champions” and catapulted trainer H. Allen Jerkens’ reputation as “The Giant Killer”.

Monmouth Wagering Wrap-up

During the Monmouth Park meeting, which began on May 14th, and ended on November 6th, I took on the roll of a public handicapper for one specific wager, the new 50¢ Place Pick 6. This was basically a weekend only meeting that had 67 actual days of racing.

Playing the Place Pick 6

In recent years Monmouth Park has been willing to try new wagers. For the Breeders Cup in 2007, the low take-out 50¢ minimum Pick 5 was unveiled for the first time. That Pick 5 wager has swept across the country and has caused most tracks to change their minimum bets on the Pick 4 to 50¢.

Point – Counterpoint: Older Horses vs Three Year Olds

2011 has been an exciting year for racing, with no standout superhorse to hog the spotlight. But as the Breeders’ Cup draws near, which division has been more impressive? HRN blogger Matt Shifman, of Racing at the Jersey Shore, and Managing Editor Brian Zipse of Zipse At The Track, debate the merits of the 3-year-olds versus their older rivals!

Ruler On Ice Looking to Rule the Classic

I recently helped friend and colleague Joe DePaolo with an article for the Breeders’ Cup website about Breeders’ Cup Classic entrant Ruler On Ice. Ruler On Ice is the Monmouth Park based runner who won the Belmont Stakes for New Jersey owners George and Lori Hall and trainer Kelly Breen.

To Todd Or Not To Todd

It’s Travers Day at Saratoga and racing has been cancelled at Monmouth, so we have to play the $1,000,000 guaranteed all stakes 50¢ Late Pick 4.

We would be remiss if we did not address the question: “To Todd or not to Todd?” Trainer Todd Pletcher has at least one horse in all four legs of the Late Pick 4. Is it that easy a play: Todd/Todd/Todd/Todd or if you prefer: Todd with Todd with Todd with Todd? In race 9 he has #1 Maple Forest at 12-1 morning line. In race 10 # 3 Hilda’s Passion goes for Todd at 2-1. In the King’s Bishop, # 7 Uncle Mo makes his long awaited return. Race 12 is the Travers and Todd has #9 Stay Thirsty at 5-2.

Uncle Mo: He’s back!

It had been way too long since I had been to Belmont Park. It was with great anticipation that I headed to Super Saturday. There would be five grade one races, but I was most looking forward to the Kelso Handicap, which was a mere grade two event. The Kelso was where Uncle Mo was running.

What’s Next for Rapid Redux?

The five year-old gelding Rapid Redux tied the North American record of 19 consecutive victories. Rapid Redux now shares that record with 2010 Horse of the Year Zenyatta and the retired New Mexico-bred Peppers Pride.


About andyscoggin

Matt Shifman, the man behind AndyScoggin, is a featured blogger covering NYRA and Monmouth Park for "Racing at the Jersey Shore" covers the racing scene at Monmouth Park and "A New York State of Racing" will discuss NYRA. Matt votes for the Top 10 Thoroughbreds in the NTRA Polls at www.NTRA/polls.
This entry was posted in Breeders Cup, Horse Racing Nation, Monmouth Park, Place Pick 6, Rapid Redux, Tom Durkin, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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