One of the obvious benefits of visiting with Dr RS Hussain is that he is a lively talker, continually throwing out observations — vitriolic and otherwise — about the behavior of his fellow human beings.
As a follow-up to yesterday’s dissection of those who would select great horses on conformation — especially by the standard code of sales perfection — the Doc has some suggestions for breeders and buyers and other observers of the equine.
He said, “After having spent a little bit of time paying attention to both horses and people, let me state honestly the following:
1. No one knows anything about what makes a great racehorse. And I mean NO ONE.
2. The superior horse is born with this great talent of running and desire for competition. It comes from his ancestors but from where or how NO ONE knows.
3. Athletic ability is one requisite, and a human being’s ability to comprehend that comes with knowledge and observation and more observation and still more observation.
4. Raising a Thoroughbred racehorse from birth with the knowledge of the capabilities of his parents is essential to general and long-term success.
5. Racing talent is one thing, but what separates a $15,000 claimer who can go five-eighths in :57 and change from the winner of the Kentucky Derby (and other top races) is character and is what Tesio described as MORAL issues.
“So next time you have a million bucks to spend on buying a yearling or two, keep this in mind: buy an athlete. From then on, it is your luck.
“Oh, yes, please do find a good trainer who loves horses, not just the day rate. Check his vet bills before you agree to send him the horse. I have a story on that too. I sent a 2-year-old to a young trainer with great statistics. The first month’s vet bill was more than the trainer’s monthly bill. That trainer is now a jockey’s agent.”