I opened my email thing this morning to check the electronic mail, and lo and behold I get an article sent to me from Cub Reporter. Cub Reporter is an independent turf journalist who touches stories others will not touch. He fears no one - not the Jockey Club, not Joe Drape, not even the King of
Today he has been focused on the America's Best Racing Fan poll, out this week which shows Game on Dude in 5th place. Game on Dude, as most know, has been stellar this season, and eminently unbeatable, while running fast times. According to Cub Reporter, this made him say "Cub, you must dig deep and uncover what's going on with this poll". And he wrote about it.
He told me not to publish this here under any circumstances. So I post it for you now.
Game On Dude: Oversight or Sabotage? By Cub Reporter
This week, America's Best Racing published a fan poll showing Game on Dude in 5th position, behind Wise Dan, Kettle Corn, Royal Delta and Big Blue Kitten.
Despite the obvious question - there's really a horse named Kettle Corn? - this result is perplexing.
"We're very comfortable with our poll. We've had auditors in to look at the results and they have passed the stringent tests that auditors do when they audit things. Alex Waldrop even looked at it and gave it the seal of approval" said ABR/NTRA Vice President of Acronyms Stephen J. Panus (who should not be confused with Michael J. Fox, who is Canadian.)
"I checked the poll too, and we're good," said Director of Social Media and Fan Polls, Penelope J. Miller (we're not sure about the J).
"I looked into the logs and I saw nothing untowards" she elaborated. "There were quite a few votes for Wise Dan from email addresses ending in "Lopresti.com" but we think those are legit. There were votes from someone named "Bobsux@hotmail.com" for all horses other than Game on Dude. We did get a lot of votes from a website that rescues kittens, and another place that's called "The World of Corn", but all of that looked fine to me."
From in and around racing, this result was curious to many.
"I have not seen him on the turnback, but I probably would've voted for Game on Dude, Eric" said NYRA racing analyst Andy Serling. When I asked why he was calling me Eric he said, "thanks Eric".
"I was very upset," said New York Times racing writer Joe Drape. "The Dude should be on top and this is a mangled poll", he noted.
"The Paulick Report has polls. We have lots of traffic. We were up over one trillion uniques last month," said Ray Paulick.
"I voted for Zenyatta," said Tampa Bay Downs announcer Richard Grunder.
Others seemed to be fine with the poll, and agree.
"I want to bet him with a 1% reduction in takeout before I am convinced, so I would've voted for Wise Dan. But I am 100% sure this horse, if he so chooses, should be able to breastfeed anywhere," said horseplayer activist Andy Asaro.
An anonymous source with an email ending with "attheraceswithstevebyk" said, "I heard someone comparing him to Best Pal the other day, and not in a good way".
Trainer Shug McGaughey said he was very impressed with Orb's work.
No one at the DRF was available for comment, because it appears all of their email addresses are now behind a paywall.
We will probably have to wait until the next ABR poll is released to make any firm conclusions. However, the poll has caused some questions throughout racing and Cub Reporter will not stop digging for the truth.