5 hours ago
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
TB W/O The OT
We all know I'm obsessed with OTTBs; and while Salem is 100% Thoroughbred, he is 0% off-track. So, I would like to clear something up. Several months ago, a friend told me, "Don't say anything, but apparently Salem really was at the track and raced, like, 40-some times." This is completely false. But I decided to do a little sleuthing and see if I could figure out how someone could come to such a conclusion.
Of course, the place to look up TB info is equibase.com, so I headed over to the site and typed "Wingman" (Salem's previous name) into the search box. This is one of the horses who popped up in the results; he's a bay Thoroughbred gelding named Wing Man who is only 2 years older than Salem and indeed has 46 starts under his belt...er, girth. I can certainly see how a person not totally familiar with Thoroughbreds could come to the conclusion that this horse is Salem.
However, here's how I know that it absolutely 100% without a doubt is not Salem: Salem doesn't have a tattoo! And every Thoroughbred who even sets a hoof onto the track is tattooed. They simply can.not.race without getting inked. In fact, my old horse Mac spent some time being track-trained as a 2-year but didn't start in a single race; but since he was at the track, he was tattooed. Even if you discount the fact that Salem was born in Ocala not New York, or that he was born in 2004 not 2002, the lack of a tattoo is the smoking gun that proves Salem is not the "Wing Man" listed on equibase.com.
The fact that he didn't race doesn't diminish Salem one bit in my eyes; in fact, I'm very glad that his big joints were spared from all the rigors of racing. I'm sure I'll own another OTTB sometime in the future, but for now I'm quite happy with my non-OT TB.