Talkin' Horses - Live Discussions

Steve Haskin Turf Writer

Thursday, January 25, 2007

2007 Triple Crown Kickoff

Steve Haskin makes his first appearance of the new year.

Senior correspondent for The Blood-Horse since 1998, Haskin is an award-winning Turf writer renowned for his Kentucky Derby commentary. During his nearly three decades at Daily Racing Form, Steve made a name with his "Derby Watch" columns.

Haskin--who has won five Red Smith Awards for his Kentucky Derby coverage--is the author of Horse Racing's Holy Grail - The Epic Quest for the Kentucky Derby and biographies of Dr. Fager, John Henry, and Kelso—all published by Eclipse Press.

Lexington, KY:
Hey Steve, I know it's early on the Triple Crown trail, but I'm getting the sense that this year's 3-year-old crop has the potential to be just as talented, if not better, then last year's outstanding runners. What's your early take on the potential quality of this year's 3-yr olds?

Haskin:
I agree. It's too bad we've already lost a good one in Tiz Wonderful, but what I like about last year's top horses are their pedigrees and running styles. Normally, you have several top 2-year-olds that have question marks regarding stamina; not this crop. I don't know yet how deep the crop is, but, right now, the top six or seven appear to be extremely strong.

Old Bridge, NJ:
Hi Steve. Your friend Rich here. Seeing that my 3-year-old probably won't make the Derby this year, do you see more room for improvement for Nobiz Like Shobiz or Street Sense? My feeling is horses like Scat Daddy and Circular Quay may have already run their best races. thanks as always

Haskin:
At least you're a realist. I guess you'll just have to bite the bullet and set your sights on the Travers. I definitely see more room for improvement from Nobiz Like Shobiz. He was still a growing boy last year, and should be something to see when he shows up this year. He has all the tools and he'll get there the right way with Tagg. I don't know what to make of Street Sense. How much better can he get? If he's still going to improve after that performance in the Juvenile, the others could be in trouble. The fact that Nafzger is giving him only two starts before the Derby, one of them a sprint, leads me to believe this horse is pretty close to peaking already and Nafzger doesn't want him over the top by the time he gets to the Derby. It's hard to tell about Scat Daddy and Circular Quay. It's certainly possible they've run their best races, but they may be better than you think.

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