Jess Jackson, co-owner of Rachel Alexandra, has such disdain for synthetic surfaces that he won’t even call them by their name. On a conference call Wednesday with national turf writers, Jackson continually referred to artificial tracks as “plastic.” He was bitter when Curlin lost in the Breeders’ Cup Classic last fall at Santa Anita, blaming the Pro-Ride surface, and it appears his dislike for synthetics continues to grow.
Jackson made it known Wednesday there is absolutely no chance that Rachel Alexandra will run at Santa Anita this fall, or over any other artificial surface for that matter. I think he’s wrong when he blames Curlin’s loss on the track because Curlin was not the same horse going in. Maybe it was the trip to Dubai in March that did him in, I don’t know. But I do know this — Curlin made a strong move turning for home in last year’s Classic while racing EXTREMELY wide and then flattened out in the stretch. It wasn’t the track, Jess. There were just better horses running that day.
“If I’m going to run a fourth year, the Breeders’ Cup is not that essential for her,” he said. “I just don’t want to risk her. You may think it’s not a risk, but I saw what Curlin did and how he struggled and I’ve seen four or five other horses that I’ve raced at Keeneland and on plastic and they struggled. If it’s a dirt horse, it’s a dirt horse.”
What do you think?