Day At The Track

Duane's view of claiming races

10:10 AM 23 Oct 2015 NZDT
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Duane Marfisi
Duane Marfisi

Duane Marfisi recently sat down with Dave McCarthy to give his views on claiming races and how they form a big part of the harness racing industry in North America.

"Yes Janet and I race All Star Angus with Mark and Natalie but as you would expect I raced a lot of horses back home (Canada) and in fact it was a good sideline business for us.

In North America the handicapping is done by owners through Claiming Races.

 I am surprised they have not been more popular here because if you know what you are doing you can do pretty well out of it.

$60,000 a year and more was not out of the question when I was operating there and we never went above the $40,000 claimers when buying and usually much lower.

It puts you to the test and they don't all work out

One of my very best friends in Canada, Mike Beaver, a guy I really miss when being over here, and I worked together.

Mike was an all round horseman.

He had been everything from a cowboy to an equestrian teacher who took youngsters through to some high grade trophies in Ohio State Fairs.

He is a guy of many parts is Mike.

 We would sort a horse and it would spend some time with Mike mixing with all the other breeds of horses he had and freshen up.

We then trained them up and raced them in claiming races.

Because we were not wanting just to hang on to them we would line up time after time and it was good money.

If they were claimed we would move on and sometimes claim them back later when they got out of their grade.

It was business and a good one for us.

I miss it in racing here and I don't think the Kiwis appreciate how well the system works.

I understand people here have a more personal relationships with their horses and fear that maybe someone will turn their horse into a star but it doesn't really work like that.

You dohave to know what you are doing both when you are buying and training and setting them and sometimes you have to drop them down from the grade you bought them from.

You can still get out of it.

If they don't make it in $20,000 claimers you go to the $15,000 or so and if you can win the stake makes up for the claiming value loss.

So it is a pretty good deal all round.

David McCarthy

Reproduced with permission of All Stars Racing Stables   -   Check site here

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