American Pharaoh – What’s In A Name?
Finally after 37 years we have added a 12th name to the Tripple Crown memorial. Will it read American Pharoah or American Pharaoh and what is the real account of how the spelling mistake became legal history? For that matter, why was it decreed that it could not be corrected? My last race horse was originally named Steak and Baloney on his registration papers. When he came into my possession I petitioned the registration office and paid to have his name changed to Sun Bar’s Shadow to reflect his Three Bars and Black Sun Bar ancestry, not to mention I failed to appreciate the satirical humor in the first naming. So be it, we now have a Triple Crown winner with a misspelled name. Perhaps it is best the spelling missed the intended mark. In ancient Egypt a pharaoh was an autocratic dictator ruling as ultimate king and worshiped as a blood prodigy of the sun god, Re. An American Pharaoh would therefore be an oxymoron under the rules of the US Constitution which insure autonomous rule. Perhaps the spelling anomaly could be foreshadowing of a coming power anomaly as “We the People” continue to surrender our ordained right to rule. Could a letter shift that should have been corrected in an element of the microcosm that has produced a macro page in history be subliminal warning that accepting seemingly harmless power shifts in the political arena is destining America to a matching dictatorial paradigm shift in our national future? Just a random thought.
I’m also confused about the seeming inattention to the fact AP is registered as a ridgeling meaning he had one testicle that did not descend. My Sun Bars Shadow also had a testicle that fully descending and then decided to go traveling. I always suspicioned that it’s decision to ascend & travel resulted from an extended series of steroid shots administered to assist healing of a leg injury. Steroids are known to decrease normal testosterone levels & to shrink testicles, so I figured maybe the testicle shrunk which allowed it to reascend. (When I worked at Gold’s Gym I warned the roid droids of my suspicions, but they never listened.) At any rate the AQHA will not allow a ridgeling into their stud registries because it is considered a hereditary condition that can be passed on. I fully intended to wait out the problem since I was aware the testicle had at one time reached its intended destination and therefore might correct itself. However, a traveling testicle can go anywhere in a horse’s body including all the way to the backbone and can locate in areas where it is subject to being pinched especially when a rider is aboard. I experienced Shadow’s reaction to this phenomena enough times to make sure I always had on my racing helmet even when I was pleasure riding because my race horses were always broke for pleasure riding along side their race training so they would be well rounded. I’ve been bucked off many times over the years, but when that testicle got pinched pile driving the rider into the ground was the instant response and an entire unprecedented chapter in my bucking experience was registered. And so I reluctantly gave in to all the concerned voices who were insisting the problem be corrected for my safety. I could have left the one remaining descended testicle in place, but if breeding was not allowed by the registry there was no since in doing that. The local area veterinarian that always attended my race horses considered the operation one of his finest challenges because his equipment only allowed a minimum time window for safe anesthesia. He said he stayed up all night the night before studying exactly how to reach inside the abdomen to explore and retrieve the traveler under the strict time restraints. He must have studied well because he was up to his shoulder reaching, but he did successfully retrieve and remove the wayfarer and its innocent twin. My question is, if Thoroughbred racing is supposed to be so much better regulated, why do they seemingly look the other way for ridgeling breeding when AQHA racing will only recognize a ridgling that has been gelded? Another random thought.
AP is beautiful and I rejoiced to remotely witness his race into history. I forgot to record the Derby, but I did read that Victor Espinoza was questioned about his excessive whipping in that race. My comments on his excessive whipping habits were registered in my California Chrome comments last year. Either his whipping was more refined this year or AP had a different attitude about it because he seemed to run true. I totally missed the muddy Preakness victory, but his Belmont run seemed effortless. I rejoice with Victor’s Tripple Crown ride into history also.
The Zayat family has its own anomalies including the fact they are Orthodox Jews who also identify themselves as Muslims. It was never explained why the son always did the talking during the race interviews because surely Ahmed would not transfer his business savvy from Egypt to America without learning English unless he is content to rely on such translator relations. The son was passionate, but I personally would have liked to also hear from the father even if it was through translation. Perhaps Ahmed is more Orthodox and preferred to remain semi-reserved from public oratory on the Sabbath. He did camp in an RV so the family could walk to the track since driving an automobile would involve using machinery which equates to work which is forbidden on the Sabbath. I guess a prize horse extending horsepower to generate financial gain was an exemption. Too many random thoughts for one blog.