Commentator Leaves Field Speechless
Most horses that are seven years of age have been retired from racing. Firstly, because they are used for stud and secondly, it seems that the older some racehorses get, the less they are interested in racing. But in the case of the seven year old Commentator, he is a gelding, unable to be used in stud and he still loves the thrill of racing and giving it all he has got. He is also fortunate to have a gentle and loving owner and a trainer that has been a campaigner for the health and welfare of horses his entire life.
Together, Nick Zito (trainer) and Tracy Farmer (owner) have plotted every step of Commentators’ horse racing career, making choices in his best interest, always believing in his abilities and celebrating him, in both his victories and losses. And on Saturday, the 29th of July 2008, Commentator gave his supporters one more reason to smile, by winning the $750,000 Whitney Handicap (Grade 1) and securing his automatic entry into the Breeder’s Cup, which takes place at Santa Anita Racecourse on the 24th and 25th of October 2008.
By winning the Whitney Handicap, Commentator became the second oldest horse to win this event, with Kelso having won the Whitney handicap at the age of eight, in 1965, for the third time. Commentator also falls within the elite few that have won this racing event more than once, as Saturday was his second victory at the Whitney Handicap, winning it for the first time in 2005. Commentator outran Student Council, with John Velazquez on board, in front of approximately twenty seven thousand spectators, pushing his career earnings to well over $1.5 million and securing his twelfth victory in nineteen career starts.
In preparation for the Breeders’ Cup, Nick Zito would like to run Commentator in the $500,000 Massachusetts Handicap that is being held at Suffolk Downs, on 20 September 2008. Not only will it give Commentator a good practice run and a five week breather before the Breeders’ Cup, but it will show their support in the decision taken by Suffolk Downs owners and management, to only allow horsemen who do not participate in the selling of horses for slaughter, or aiding of this practice, to race in their events. Zito has said that this stand is great news for racehorses and admired their zero-tolerance policy.
Commentators has proven that age is just a number, and that older horses still have a lot to give to the sport of horse racing. He has demonstrated that his experience and mature racing style can still win big events and has become the new hero of Saratoga Racecourse.