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Message: Just wanted some opinions on horses missing the start. Is it purely the horses fault or does the jockey and even the barrier attendants pay some part in the process of them missing the start? I say this because I noticed both Denman and Demerit missed the start at both their previous starts. Obviously Kmac was on both but what frustrated me with both rides was that after missing the kick he hunted them up to get them into a good position but in reality had them 3-4 wide facing the breeze around corners. I'm no great expert but in Denmans case, being suspect at a mile I didn't think was the smartest idea and in Demerits case being first up agaisnt a fairly sharp field, using all that petrol wouldn't have helped. So is this a case of him riding to strict instructions? The horses being one dimensional that they have to be in first 2 or 3 to have a chance? or is it Kerrin and his european history where they dont ride as tight as we do here? It also interests me that C Williams missed the kick on Von Costa one day and kicked him up to be in the first 4 and Hayes was very unhappy, he said it was his policy if a horse missed the start to have them settle where they landed, and I think that was the beginning of the end of those 2.
I am not really familiar with the Seabiscuit story but I will bet that the story has been jazzed up a bit to become suitable for TV viewing.
In the cold, hard light of day we all know that the bell is infact a stock-whip. (Happy to be corrected is it infact was a bell)
This is the proven method of teaching a throughbred who is slow from the gates to jump quickly.
It's a simple process where a horse is loaded into the gates and as the gates open, simultaneously someone standing behind will belt a horse on the rump with a stock-whip. Come raceday the animal will anticipate this pain when the gates open and he will try his best to run from the whip.
Animals are creatures of habit and routine.
You may see on occasion, when a horse urinates, it's handler will whistle. Whistling does not make horses urinate. When a horse is very young, if you whistle every time it urinates it will eventually associate this with bladder movement and eventually, when you want a horse to urinate (at the races for a swab) all you need to do is whistle and this will stir their bladder into motion. All very simple.
You may also have heard around the traps that Vicks is banned at racecourses and there is a very good reason for this. In the old days trainers would throw a set of blinkers on a horse with a set of long lunging reins where they could stand two or three metres behind a horse. They would then put Vicks up a horses nose, grab hold of the reins and give the horse a frightful belting. With the blinkers on, the horse cannot see who is doing the belting. All very cruel. When it came to raceday, the same horse would have a set of blinkers applied and just before the horse goes out onto the track a smidgin of Vicks would be applied to the horses nostrils. This anticipation of a frightful flogging would often see a horse jump the gates and lead from barrier to box. The downside to all this was the fact that this would frazzle a horses nerves and his form would drop off quickly afterwards. This was usually applied to very quick horses who didn't have much heart who were going to be sold to other owners. The trainer would use this method, back the horse for a stack and then sell the horse to a new trainer who had to deal with a horse who had been mentally destroyed.
That is why the education of a young horse is pivotal in their successes later in life. If you can find someone who will teach them good habits and routine you will have a much better racehorse.
Message: It wouldve been in the Sea Biscuit movie where the eponymous horse was missing the start. The trainer arranged a Pavlovian exercise where each time the gates at a jump-out opened a loud noise would instill into SB to get cracking. Could this be a true story? Could other trainers do the same?
Author: boof182 Timestamp:- 25/3/2010 9:08:56 AM Subject: Re: Missing the kick
Message: The only way it could be the fault of a barrier attendent is if he is still holding the bridle or if he has his leg in front of the jockeys rather than behind it where it should be. Anyone brave enough to keep a hold of a horses tail when the gates open is very ambitious indeed.
I might also suggest it would be very difficult for a jockey to try and get a horse to miss the kick on purpose. The only real thing you could do is not hunt the horse out of the gates.
I'd say Snowden's two missed the kick because they just didn't anticipate the start as well as the others.
Just remember while it appears that Denman was slow out, if others around him were "slower" out then it would appear that Denman had've jumped away well, when infact he hasn't.
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