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Post Position: The Great Equalizer?

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Published: June 25, 2010 1:40 pm ET

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He’s won both an O’Brien Award and the Pepsi North America Cup, so take it from this world-class driver when he says, “If he had drawn the two (Post 2, for Saturday’s $1.5 million 'Cup' final), I think he would be the 2-1 second choice on the board.”

Those are the words of Jody Jamieson, who has twice been voted the O’Brien Award winner as Canada’s Driver of the Year (2007, 2009). He took top prize at Mohawk Racetrack during the ‘07 edition of the Cup with Tell All, and he is getting accustomed to snaring high-end stakes events against the top stock and reinsmen the planet has to offer.

After the trip Jamieson’s mount, Kyle Major, went in his Cup elimination last weekend, it is pretty safe to say that if the son of Art Major would have drawn any sort of decent post position for Saturday’s $1.5 million final, his early odds on the morning line would be at least somewhat lower.

The chart line and the race replay don’t lie. No matter which way one chooses to slice it, Kyle Major, now racing off of the backstretch at Mohawk Racetrack, went an enormous mile in his Cup elim for trainer Shawn Robinson.

Hindered with a Post 8 starting spot against a pair of the most heralded colts heading into the 2010 racing campaign, Kyle Major blasted off the gate in his Cup elim and sizzled the opening three fractions in :26, :54.1 and 1:21.2. The colt refused to back down in the final strides when excuses were easier to find than cashable Show bets on heavy chalk. The result? Nosed out for second by a class closer in a 1:48.4 mile.

Take it from Jamieson, Kyle Major is for real.

2010 NA Cup Elims - Rock N Roll Heaven - 1:48.4

As for his thoughts on Kyle Major’s 6-1 assessment on the morning line, either high or low, Jamieson gave his opinion to Trot Insider.

“It depends on what school of thought you come from,” he said. “[Kyle Major] raced his ass off in the elimination and certainly went a huge trip. If he had drawn the two (for the final), I think he would be the 2-1 second choice on the board, but he’s drawn the nine (Post 9), and I think it’s a conservative 6-1, but I don’t really have an opinion either way.”

What Jamieson is sure of is that in a race this deep, with the contenders holding the class in which they do, post position plays a significant role. An equalizing role? We are all going to have to wait for the dust to settle Saturday to find out.

“It looks like there are seven or eight, maybe nine, maybe even 10 colts that could win,” Jamieson said. “Obviously (posts) eight, nine, 10 are tough spots to start from for One More Laugh, Piece Of The Rock and Kyle Major, but it looks like it’s a wide open affair.”

Not looking to misconstrue his sentiments on the post draw, Jamieson gave all the credit in the world to the field, but did state that the draw result definitely put he and Kyle Major’s connections behind the eight ball. “It’s just a very evenly bunched field, but I think you needed to have the inside to have a legitimate chance of winning,” he said.

Besides post position, Jamieson did tell Trot Insider that it would be advantageous to be able to get Kyle Major either a two-hole or second-over trip, or something that would allow him to lay off the early tempo and fire home with a clear lane in the late stages. Athough, it was Jamieson’s comments away from the starting spots and race routes which provided more insight into Kyle Major after the elim and heading into the final.

“He went home to the farm right after the race and he slept all day on Sunday, which some people think is a good sign and some people think is bad,” said Jamieson. “Horses aren’t supposed to lay down a whole lot and he was obviously a little tired, but it was a huge trip in (1:) 48.4 at Mohawk. If we did it at Woodbine you could say it’s a speed track and its imaginable, but 48.4 at Mohawk you just don’t see it a whole lot, especially by three-year-olds, and it ended up that there were three three-year-olds right there together.”

Jamieson explained that Kyle Major’s connections were planning on sending the colt to Dr. McMaster's on Wednesday to make sure there wasn’t anything else that could be touched up or fixed on the colt.

“I don’t think there are a whole lot of problems with him other than he did hook on the right line a little bit around the last turn (in the elim) and I think Dr. McMaster is going to address that. I don’t think it can hurt him. Any vet work that they can do will be able to just make him feel that much better on race day.”

To view the recap of the post position draw, click here.

Mohawk's 13-dash Saturday program has a first-race post time of 7:10 p.m. Post time for the 27th edition of the Cup (Race 7), the richest pacing event in the world, is 9:40 p.m., The Score Television Network will air a special one and one-half hour telecast nationally from 8:30 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. (ET).

To view free, printable program pages for Mohawk's Saturday card courtesy of TrackIT, click here.

To view SC's regular entries page for NA Cup night, click here.


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