Harlem Rocker Home Page
Last Modified: Tuesday, 13th December, 2011 @ 10:26pm
Sired by Macho Uno and Dam to Freedom Come.
Just got an
email this week from Dave W. saying that Harlem Rocker has been
retired. Its disappointing, as I think he was a great horse with
a lot of unrealized potential. I was really hoping to see him
race once more, but all his 2010 dates have been too far south
from me. It sounds like they are really doing what's in the best
interest of the horse, which is good news.
The full email
from Dave W:
Stronach has made the decision to retire Harlem Rocker from racing.
know, Harlem Rocker underwent tie-back surgery on July 2nd of
this year to aid in correcting his breathing issue. Since Harlem
Rocker's return to training, further endoscopic exams have determined
that the procedure was not 100% effective. Harlem Rocker has been
a successful horse for this partnership, and to bring him back
at a lower level of racing would not be an option for Adena.
Rocker retires with 4 wins, 2 seconds, and 1 third from 12 starts.
He earned $600,350 winning the Withers S. (G3), Prince Of Wales
S.($500,000), and finishing first in the Cigar Mile (G1) before
being placed 2nd for "interference" with Tale of Ekati.
is currently evaluating various options for Harlem Rocker's stallion
career. Once a decision has been made we will let you know where
he is going to stand."
We got word
from Dave W that Harlem Rocker is being pointed towards a race
Rocker is being pointed towards a 4x allowance race at Monmouth
park in late May. The purse will be in the $90,000 range, so it
will be a stakes caliber field that he will face. He recently
worked on the turf and was being considered for a turf race in
the future, but Pletcher felt that he will be best on the dirt
I had been
wondering about the turf training times recently. If he does make
a trip to Monmouth, the only upcoming race he seems to qualify
for is the Decathlon Stakes on May 22nd.
I made the
trip to Monmouth last year to see Lord Justice, and I wouldn't
mind doing it again to see Harlem Rocker.
Got the word
on Thursday that Harlem Rocker, along with 10 other horses will
be contesting for the Gulfstream Park Handicap (Race 10) on Saturday
March 13th. It looks to be a pretty strong field for the Grade
2 $300,000 race. Quality Road will be sitting this one out, But
HR will still need to contend with the likes of Cool Coal Man,
Motovado, You and I Forever, and Grasshopper.
line odds favor This Ones For Phil at 9/5 with Cool Coal Man at
5/1 and Motovato and Past The Point in at 6/1. Our man Harlem
Rocker is in at 8/1.
Got some links
to a few articles on the race, DRF analysis, free track picks
from Gulfstream, and Brisnets from Todd Pletcher Racing. Enjoy!
Looks like the race will be on TVG for me, and may make a trip
to OTB to put a little $$$$ on this one ($20 WPS?).
Park Handicap crowded - On the morning line favorite This
Ones For Phil:
Ones for Phil, who opened his 2010 campaign with a nose decision
over Peshito the Che in the Sunshine Millions Sprint, has won
3 of his 4 starts over the Gulfstream Park strip. His lone setback
here came last winter from the outside post when he set a torrid
pace before finishing a tiring fifth behind Quality Road in the
Fountain of Youth."
has two of well-matched 11 - On Harlem Rocker's less than
stellar trip in the Hal's Hope:
Rocker will carry the hopes of trainer Todd Pletcher's stable
into the Gulfstream Park Handicap in the absence of Quality Road
after finishing seven lengths behind his stablemate in the Grade
3 Hal's Hope here on opening day."
Pletcher Racing - PDF File
Mike Costanzo weighs in on his choices for the race:
Rocker has never really lived up to the hype from early in his
career, but he has always looked the part of a good one-turn mile
type horse, and his fourth in the Hal’s Hope wasn’t
really as bad as the result suggests. Just get the feeling he
is sitting on a big race.
had a horrendous trip in his last, yet only missed by a length
when finishing third in a G2. There is an adequate amount of early
runners entered here, and if things start to fall apart he should
be doing his best work in the final furlong.
#9 Cool Coal
Man was a strong winner in his last, which has run his record
to four wins from five starts over this track – although
his lone bad performance came in this race last year; and that
came off a win similar to his last.
Racing Form Analysis is a little different:
1. Motovato 2. This Ones for Phil 3. You and I Forever
get any more wide open than this. MOTOVATO nearly overcame a disastrous
trip to upset Munnings in the GP Sprint and in peak form at the
present time. Can run down the speed with cleaner sailing. THIS
ONES FOR PHIL loves the course, should get a nice stalking trip
from today's outside post. Should have had sufficient time to
recover from very hard and game effort in the Sunshine Sprint.
YOU AND I FOREVER like his stablemate, victimized by a tough trip
when hung very wide throughout in the GP Sprint. Made a big run
to reach the leaders on the turn but could not sustain the bid.
Has run some huge one turn miles in the past including strong
against the bias effort against Quality Road in the Hal's Hope.
Should be a great race!
I can't wait.
Rocker 4th in first race of 2010 as a 5 yr old
finished his first race of the year in 4th after fading down the
stretch. I didn't get a chance to watch the race live, as it was
covered on HRTV not TVG.
ESPN has an
article about the race - Quality
Road keeps his cool.
Rocker Results - PDF File
from Gulfstream Park: Todd Pletcher (Harlem Rocker, 1st) –
“I was a little disappointed in Harlem Rocker, but the slow
fractions didn’t help him and he didn’t have anything
to close into.”
Rocker Starts as a 5 Year Old
Rocker will make his first start as a 5 year old against some
tough competition in the 1 mile Hal's Hope Handicap as part of
opening weekend at Gulfstream park. This Grade 3 race features
a purse of $100,000. Eibar Coa will be riding Harlem Rocker against
Pletcher Stablemate Quality Road. The pair go in as morning line
favorites with QR at 6/5 and HR at 3/1.
Rocker Past Performances - PDF File
Pletcher Racing - PDF File
race will be of great interest to see how an older Harlem Rocker
may run his 5 year old campaign. Post time is around 4:30pm for
the 8th race of the day.
Eight Analysis by Mike Costanzo - Selections:
#2 - Quality Road may be as talented as any older
horse out there, but he has had his share of welldocumented issues,
not the least of which was his gate scratch in the Breeders’
Cup Classic. He begins his road to redemption here, at the site
of his crowning glory – last year’s Florida Derby.
Clearly the one to beat, all eyes will be focused his way as he
heads to the gate.
#7 Harlem Rocker - Away from the races for nearly
a year following a disqualification from first in the Cigar Mile,
he tuned up for his 2010 season with a secondplace run at Churchill
in November that can be viewed as a good defeat. He also loves
this one-turn mile trip, and the Gulfstream Park oval.
#5 - Le Grand Cru exits consecutive Grade 3 wins,
but has unfortunately hooked two legitimate Grade 1 rivals today.
Rocker 2nd in Return
Harlem Rocker made
his comeback to racing in November 2009 finishing 2nd in a close
race. In watching the replays it looked like HR thought he was
the leader and slacked off, and then realized there was one horse
to go and kicked it into high gear, but a bit too late. Had there
been another few yards, we would be calling this one a "W".
All in all a very good
return I would say. I am hopeful to get another change to see
him race live in 2010.
Rocker Results - PDF File
Rocker is entered to run Saturday November 14 at Churchill Downs.
Its been 11 months since we last saw Harlem Rocker in the Cigar
Mile. This race is a 7 furlong Allowance Race (with a ton of restrictions),
Purse of $56,000. He will be ridden by John Velazquez. Pletcher
also has entered King of the Roxy in this race.
Rocker has some really great workouts leading up to this race,
so it will be interesting to see how he does. It will be good
to get him back on the track and see how he does.
Rocker Past Performances - PDF File
Pletcher Racing - PDF File
am currenlty in Cocoa Beach Florida for the Space Shuttle STS-129
launch so my updates on HR's progress towards this race may be
limitted, but I am supper enthusiastic for this race. Go Harlem
Rocker to Kentucky?
got word from Dave W that Harlem Rocker may be working towards
a 2009 debut at Churchill Downs on Saturday November 14th. Stay
tuned for updates and past performances.
Rocker Working Well
you have been following the workouts from Harlem Rocker, you can
see that he has been working out well recently, and quite consistantly
too. Great news for a horse, who by most accounts was quite sick.
Word out of the venture is that Harlem Rocker may make a start
on November 5th at Aqueduct in a 6 furlong allowance race.
would love to travel and see him again, but middle of the week,
and a 6.5 hour drive out and back means I probably won't be able
to cover this trip.
got this information from Dave W, and Daily Racing form about
his recent workouts:
N.Y. - Trainer Todd Pletcher said he pre-entered 12 horses for
the Breeders' Cup on Nov. 6-7 at Santa Anita, and on Monday morning
at Belmont Park half of them put in their most serious workouts
for their respective races.
Road, who Pletcher said was pre-entered in the $5 million Classic,
worked five furlongs in 1:00.52 over the Belmont training track,
according to Daily Racing Form, in company with the multiple stakes
winner Harlem Rocker. With John Velazquez in the irons, Quality
Road started about a half-length outside of Harlem Rocker and
went in splits of 12.79 seconds, 24.66, and 35.89, meaning he
got his last quarter in 24.63 while finishing on even terms. Quality
Road galloped out six furlongs in 1:14.21. Harlem Rocker, who
was officially given a time of 1:00.74, has not run since being
disqualified from first and placed second in last November's Grade
1 Cigar Mile.
solid work; both horses went well," Pletcher said...."
working out with good company, that's for sure. Here's hoping
for a triumphant return.
got an update from Dave W, that after successfull surgery, Harlem
Rocker has returned to train with Todd Pletcher at Belmont. This
is good news, for after hearing that Harlem Rocker did indeed undergo
surgery July 2nd, we hadn't heard a peep about him. My friend Mark
tracked down Todd Pletcher at saratoga during the Jim Dandy, and
managed to get a terse answer to his question on Harlem Rocker's
condition - "Good".
heard some news that Harlem Rocker was back training at Adena Springs,
and a conflicting report that he was back at Belmont. So I guess
back to Belmont is the news. Hope he has a successful return to racing
in some form.
got an email from Dave W stating that harlem Rocker may need some
surgery on his respiratory track.
Dave W: "Since returning to training with Todd Pletcher,
Harlem Rocker has shown some signs that indicated the necessity
his airway. Based off of the initial scoping, it is anticipated
that he may need a "tie-back" surgery to correct what
has been diagnosed in the initial findings. He has been referred
to Cornell University for a second opinion, and for an extensive
evaluation of his entire upper respiratory tract. This surgery
is routinely performed on training horses that show partial or
complete paralysis of the muscles that control the arytenoids,
aka “flapper”. This surgery is also referred to as
Rocker is currently scheduled for an appointment on July 1st. As
of now it is anticipated that he will remain in light training
up until this date. If surgery is recommended, it will be performed
on July 2nd.
as more information is available, we'll send an update."
sure disappointing not to see him running this year, but it sounds
like he is getting the best care possible.
of Evaluation - PDF File
got word from Dave W that Harlem Rocker is being shipped back to
Todd Pletcher for training at Belmont. Who knows what the future
holds for his racing career? I'm hoping for some more summer dates
Dave W: "Harlem Rocker shipped out from Adena South today
and is on his way to Belmont to rejoin Todd Pletcher. He
has done very well over the past month. He has been putting the weight
and has been jogging steadily for the past 30-40 days.
He is not ready to start breezing yet, but we hope that will not be
too far off."
got word from Dave W that Harlem Rocker is getting better and doing
some jogging on the training track. I hope he can make a triumphant
return to racing.
Dave W: "Harlem Rocker is back under tack at Adena South
and is jogging on the training track. He has been putting on weight
to improve. The Stronachs will be very cautious with him and will
not rush him back to the track. He was pretty sick at one point and
they want to make sure that he is brought along slowly."
Rocker still being treated
it sounds like Harlem Rocker just can't get over some of his illnesses
this year. We just got this update and Vet Report from Dave W:
Saturday, April 4th, Harlem Rocker began showing signs of abdominal
discomfort. In light of his recent medical history he was sent to the
Medical Center of Ocala for further medical treatment and diagnostic
procedures. He has responded well to treatment, and our latest update
confirms that he is continuing to improve.
letter provides more information, and we will continue to
update you on his condition."
Attached Vet Report: Word Document
I hope he gets
better soon. I am super happy that we have a chance to own a share
of Harlem Rocker, but at the same time it feels bitter-sweet because
of what I perceive as all the missed opportunity we had with him.
He raced will in April of last year, and there was talk of him going
to the Preakness. This plan was abandoned for him to Race in Canada
for the Canadian Triple Crown. When he didn't take well to the Synthetic
surface, we lost a whole month or so of potential racing while he
sat out to get back on the American race circuit schedule. Now with
his illness coming in January of this year, he has missed more months
of potential racing. If you compare his racing schedule to that of
Tale of Ekati, a horse he has beaten before, you can see the potential
HR has. Here's to continued hoping for a speedy recovery.
Rocker back at the farm
plan for 2009 for Harlem Rocker was to run him in the Donn Handicap
for 4 year olds and upward at Gulfstream Park. A few weeks before
the Donn, Harlem Rocker had a fever and was unable to train or compete
in the race. Dave Williams tells us that Harlem Rocker also suffered
from a bout of mild diarrhea. The fever and diarrhea have passed,
but he has shed some weight. It has been decided to give him some
rest (apprx 30 days) before he resumes his training.
other news, Harlem Rocker amongst many other horses has been nominated
for the Dubai World Cup. I have heard nothing that says he will be
pointed in that direction, and no word on what the recent illness
will mean. I suspect there is little chance he will actually go.
World Cup Nominations -
World Cup Web Site
Disappointment at the Big A - Aqueduct Racetrack for
the Cigar Mile
been looking forward to going to Aqueduct for the Cigar Mile for
a few months. I was really surprised to see Harlem Rocker as the
morning line 15-1 long shot. But I felt good because I knew there
was money to be made. I met some friends in NY for the day and saw
a couple other HR fans there too. The race was amazing, and we were
ecstatic to see Harlem Rocker win. Then the racing stewards took
it away and place Harlem Rocker second. What a fine animal Harlem
Rocker is. View more images and read about my trip to Aqueduct in
the photo gallery