Fall out from the BC.
Well another year has passed us by and the big story this year was, of course, the remarkable success of Mb Stables.
The man himself has been pretty quiet which is certainly a good decision as nothing he could say apart from thank you would be the right thing. There are many opinions on the forums as to what effect this will have on the game but generally they fall into two camps. Those that applaud this amazing feat and those that see it as a bad thing for the game.
Lets look at the success first. Out of 35 runners he managed 7 wins and 1 second. A 20% win ratio. On the face of it there is nothing remarkable in that statistic until you realise the competitive nature of the BC races and the chances of hitting winners in those races.
There were disappointments along the way, Levi Broom, Beat To The Punch and Confidently In love had dominated most of the lead up form for the Juvenile Fillies and yet none could make the frame. Also in the Juvenile Edge Of Chai was a big disappointment. Of the older horses Positive Thinking was last in the Classic and has fallen a long way since his win in the BEL and the BEL Oaks runner up General Belle was last in the Ladies turf.
So the success with 35 horses running in 13 races is not a surprise, the odds were certainly with the stable having qualified all those horses through the year and won a lot of the major grade ones with them. Is it dominant? Well numerically it certainly is but there is no comparison as to how any other stable would do with those sorts of numbers so it is hard to say it was freakish. Some owners have a better win percentage, some will have achieved success with a very small barn and breeding operation so the perceived dominance is purely numerical and it is important to remember that.
So has it ruined the game? Well the answer of course is no. The game is the same game it was last year when with a similar number of runners the stable had much less success. So what was different this year? well the answer is nothing and that is why the game is no more ruined that it was before, Mb Stables just got more winners this year. The perception will be that very few will ever be able to afford to have 35 runners in the BC and therefore the chances of success for any other stable is reduced. That’s a fair assumption and one that may or may not be balanced by the new rules around breeding and stable numbers but at the end of the day it will take a season or two for that to come into effect and until then it is certainly hard to make inroads into the Mb Stables set up.
Can new rules ever change this? Well again it is difficult to really change anything unless a rule such as one runner per stable in the BC is introduced, or even one runner in any grade one. That would certainly reduce Mb’s chances of success but is that really fair? Other stables have had multiple runners in the BC and not had his success but then no other stable has ever had so many multiple entries in the BC so again it is hard to tell. Maybe a further reduction in stable size down to around the 500 mark would have some effect but at the end of the day any reduction with a minimal amount of players will have a negative effect on the income of the game and that could be a bigger problem than one person winning all the races.
So what should we do? Well most of us will carry on as usual, having a little success here and there at the level we choose and that certainly wont change. For anyone that thinks they can emulate Mb Stables, well good luck with that but if you want inspiration from this BC look no further than Sir Daniel Martin, Jive Inc, Delta Farms, Easy Money Stables and Tiratzo who achieved success with a fraction of the horses or breeding operation of our Champion Owner.