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Well said, Tommy! Terry and Erin have also made the point that only by running in certain claiming races can horses have the opportunity to run in starter allowance races. Thunder Quay, who just won his 4th straight race, has used this to his -- and his partners'--advantage. To analogize to another sport, starter level allowance races, restricted to horses that meet certain criteria such as prior entry in a claiming race, give horses the sort of protection from competition that may be too tough to handle, and opportunity to prove themselves and gain confidence, that seedings do for players in tennis tournaments. Some terrific horses -- not just Montana Knight and Thunder Quay! ;-) -- have run in claiming races. To cite just two examples, Lava Man first raced as a 2-yr. old in a $12.5K claiming race and Charismatic was in a claiming race for $62.5K only 3 months before he won the Derby and Preakness. Thanks again for your helpful and always enjoyable perspective! :-)
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