Day At The Track

Razzle Dazzle is poised for a big campaign

11:20 AM 13 Apr 2012 NZST
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Razzle Dazzle and Simon Allard
Razzle Dazzle and Simon Allard - win the $16,500 Open Handicap pace

They always thought he had talent, but he's had some issues during his four-year career that required some patience. This year, however, the Silvermans feel Razzle Dazzle is finally ready, both mentally and physically, to emerge as a top contender in his harness racing division.

"He's been with my father (Jerry) and I since he was a baby," explained Richard Silverman, the gelding's conditioner. "He is the most beautiful animal there is and right from the beginning he trained down real well, like he had a lot of ability. We always loved him.

"He wound up getting some colt stuff as a 2-year-old and had some respiratory problems last year, but we got on top of that and if he maintains his current condition, I think he will be a top free-for-all horse this year.

"He's had his problems, but it seems soundness-wise and health-wise this is the best he's been. It's always hard for a 4-year-old to race against older horses like he did last year, but he's five now and this is what we have been aiming for."

The son of Real Desire, and the third of six foals out of Town Feather, is owned by Ira Kristel and has amassed $340,059 from only 37 career starts. Razzle Dazzle is a half brother to Duke Did It (Bettor's Delight p,4,1:51.2s, $235,689) and is very lightly raced for a 5-year-old.

Purchased for $32,000 as a yearling at the 2008 Lexington Selected Sale and previously named Town Desire, the gelding made only four starts at two, with one victory and $5,500 in purse money.

As a sophomore, he put his nose on the gate on 17 occasions, compiled a record of 4-3-4 and earned $222,564. At age three, he was second in a division of the Bluegrass Stakes, third in the Little Brown Jug and American-National, and fourth in the Windy City Pace.

Razzle Dazzle competed in 14 races last year with a 4-2-1 record, $96,995 in the bank and set his lifetime mark of 1:49.3f on July 3 at Harrah's Chester.

This year, Razzle Dazzle has only paced two pari-mutuel miles, both in the Levy Series at Yonkers Raceway. He finished fifth in his first start of the season on March 31 and second on April 7.

His next engagement is on Saturday (April 14), where he will contest the fourth leg of the Levy in a division carded as the fourth race. The gelding will leave from post five in a field comprised of six rivals.

"It really was an ongoing battle with him last year," Silverman said. "He had allergies and through the course of those allergies, he would get sick. He would also bleed a little bit, so that's why he's on Lasix. What we started doing is giving him medicine, just some natural stuff to build his immune system so he can fight some of this on his own and knock on wood, the vet hasn't been in his stall at all this year."

Besides his health concerns, Razzle Dazzle had another problem that impeded his form.

"He is the kind of horse that has high, high speed, but I think last year when he got excited early, he was not able to shut it down," Silverman said. "I think this year it's going to be a different story. When you race against the top free-for-allers, you have to be handy and last year he really wasn't.

"If you took him off the gate or left with him, he would not relax and come back to you. If he is able to do that this year, which I think he will, it will be a very big asset for him to make money against these kind of horses. It's different when you are racing a class below, but when you are in against the best, you have to be handy and he has been much better this year as far as that is concerned."

After the gelding has finished performing in the Levy Series, he will need to be prepared for a busy 2012 campaign.

"There isn't a race he isn't in," Silverman said. "Maybe I didn't leave him eligible in Chicago later this year, but after this we are going to, I think, the Graduate and he's going into everything out there as long as he stays healthy. This year is basically what we have been aiming for and he really does have a great attitude. He's just a pleasure to train."

by Kimberly FRENCH, USTA Web Newsroom Senior Correspondent

Courtesy of the US Trotting Association's Web Newsroom

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