"We got beat fair and square." Those were the first words Captaintreacherous Racing's Myron Bell told harnessracing.com's Gordon Waterstone when he came back to his table in the Hoosier Park dining room Friday night after Captaintreacherous suffered a stunning defeat by a half length to Dedi's Dragon in the $252,000 Monument Circle. It was just the second loss of the year in 14 starts for Captaintreacherous but it put a serious dent in the 3-year-old colt pacer's chances for Horse of the Year against the likes of the 3-year-old filly trotter Bee A Magician, who is undefeated in 2013.
"It's not like a movie where everything is perfect and the horse is never going to lose a race," said Bell. "This is real and if you race a horse enough times he's going to lose. It's not the end of the world. All the great horses eventually get beat."
In the Monument Circle, driver Tim Tetrick settled in the odds-on favorite Captaintreacherous third as Ron Pierce gunned Fool Me Once to the lead from post 8. Fool Me Once reached the quarter in :26 and then Tetrick tipped Captaintreacherous to the outside to make a move to the front. The Captain cleared before the :55 half but it wasn't easy despite the second quarter going in just :29. As The Captain moved back to the pylons, Tetrick popped the earplugs, and then he urged his charge to a 1:23.1 three-quarters clocking.
Driver Yannick Gingras had Dedi's Dragon on the move in the final turn and made a valiant move toward Captaintreacherous, who couldn't fend off his rival in the final strides in 1:50.4. The loss by Captaintreacherous was so stunning the sold-out dining room became virtually silent for a few moments.
Trainer Tony Alagna came up to the dining room shortly after and told Waterstone that while Tetrick told him the horse seemed as sound as ever, he did a scope to check for any problems and the colt scoped clean.
"He shipped here from Chicago and everything checked out good...but tonight it didn't seem like he was on his game," said Alagna. "We scoped him and he scoped clean, so we'll pull blood on him tomorrow and see if his blood work shows anything. He has a history of tying up in the past, remember we almost scratched him out of the Metro as a 2 year old because of that, so we'll make sure he didn't tie up.
"Take nothing away from the horse that won tonight though," added Alagna.
Alagna said Captaintreacherous has been stabled at Odds On Farm in Crete, Ill, near Balmoral Park, and would return there immediately after the race at Hoosier. He said he still plans on entering Captaintreacherous in next weekend's American National at Balmoral Park, but that would still depend on the results of the blood-work test that he expects to have back on Monday.