Brilliant Brass takes All Brandy 'Cap But limp may signal end of mare's career

December 28, 1992|By Ross Peddicord | Ross Peddicord,Staff Writer

Nick Bassford looked at his mare, Brilliant Brass, limp out o the winner's circle after the All Brandy Handicap yesterday at Laurel Race Course.

L "This is her goodbye to 1992, and possibly racing," he said.

The 5-year-old mare had just won the $75,000 Maryland-bred stakes -- her ninth added-money victory of the year -- but in racing parlance, she "didn't come back too good."

Jockey Edgar Prado said the horse pulled up fine after beating Gammy's Alden by 3 1/4 lengths in the nine-furlong race. But by the time Prado walked her into the winner's circle, she was

noticeably lame. Bill Brasaemle, who writes up each race for the Daily Racing Form charts, said she "returned sore."

Trainer Carlos Garcia attributed the lameness in the mare to "tying up [muscular cramps]. She's done it before," he said, and added that it could be caused by the cold weather.

He said he is planning to "back off the mare for a month or so," and then the decision will be made whether to continue racing or to send her to the breeding shed.

By winning the All Brandy, Brilliant Brass increased her career winnings to $767,052 and capped off the most successful year in racing for Bassford and his wife, Elaine.

From a medium-size stable of homebreds and claimers, they won more than $1 million in purses and 14 stakes -- nine with Brilliant Brass, three with Ameri Valay and one each with Wait For The Lady, now retired, and Festive Feathers.

"According to the speed figures, Brilliant Brass was one of the country's most consistent race mares this year," Bassford said. "So if we breed her and her offspring improve just a little over her speed, then -- who knows? -- we might end up with any kind of horse."

Brilliant Brass is considered the likely choice to be named 1992 Maryland-bred Horse of the Year in balloting conducted by the Maryland Horse Breeders' Association.

Computer troubles

Laurel experienced difficulties with its mutuel equipment yesterday, but nothing like what happened at Santa Anita Park ** on Saturday on its opening card.

At Laurel, Triples from the fifth and seventh races were not posted or paid off until the ninth race. The situation was similar to computer glitches that angered fans in the fall.

Track general manager Jim Mango said yesterday's problem occurred because of new software that AmTote International Inc. had introduced at The Meadowlands in conjunction with its Spectrum system.

Even though The Meadowlands no longer commingles its betting pools with Laurel's, the track is the hub for other New Jersey tracks that do commingle with Laurel.

"We could calculate the [Triple] prices but not get them into the system," Mango said.

At Santa Anita on Saturday, spokeswoman Jane Goldstein said, the track lost about a third of it's opening day handle -- about $3 million -- because of faulty mutuel equipment.

"We had just switched companies, from AmTote to AutoTote," Goldstein said. "There were breakdowns and slowdowns with the equipment. A lot of people left because they couldn't get their bets down. It was a huge crowd. AutoTote had had only two days to install their equipment, and they just couldn't get it working smoothly enough in time. I'm sure that anyone that ever worked for AutoTote was here working all night Saturday through yesterday morning."

Goldstein added that there were fewer problems yesterday.

Mango said that such computer problems are going to continue for a while. "Things are changing rapidly in this business, and the Tote companies are still trying to catch up with their technology," he said.

Notes

Laurel is racing today. Post time is 12:30 p.m. . . . Maryland's Reputed Testamony and Asserche are expected to start Thursday in the Gallant Fox Handicap at Aqueduct. . . . A patron at the Pimlico simulcast center complained yesterday that he couldn't get a check for a large Triple pay-off. There was no track official at Pimlico to sign the check. Said Mango: "That has happened before, and it's going to happen when we open up off-track betting facilities. We can't just leave blank checks laying around. What we tell the patrons is that we will give them as much cash as they want. Then, if they return the next day, we will give them the rest of the amount in a check. Of course, they can take cash for the whole amount at any time."

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