Barbazons Victims of a 'Bad Beat' at Tampa
Sunday, January 31, 2021

    Here's one definition of 'Irony:' "Incongruity between what might be expected and what actually happens."

    The country's most notable handicappers - guys like Andy Beyer and the late Pete Axthelm and their cronies - have always railed on what they call "bad beats," losing a major bet for various reasons other than the normal.

    A bad beat could be losing a juicy Pick 6 when the last winning horse in the sequence is disqualified for interference in the stretch, especially if the stewards' call is debatable. Or losing a Rainbow 6 when one's lone winning ticket is joined by another when the second guy's pick in the finale is a late scratch and his ticket reverts to the favorite, who wins and would have given the first guy the only winner, but now there are two.

    Without question a bad beat occurred in the 10th race at Tampa Bay Downs yesterday, and it happened to Joe and Helen Barbazon, owners of Pleasant Acres Stallions west of Ocala. They are the breeders of Here Comes Jackie, a 5-year-old mare and biggest money-winner for their own stallion, Handsome Mike.

    Here Comes Jackie went off at 7-1 in the 5-furlong turf race with veteran Ronnie Allen in the iron(y)s. Allen had his mare flying down the lane and she reached the wire a neck short of 2-1 favorite Catsoutofthebag. And here's the irony: the Barbazons were deprived of a breeders' award by a 5-year-old mare by Discreet Cat who was bred in Kentucky by, of all people, Joe and Helen Barbazon, and not eligible for a Florida breeders' award.

    So the Barbazons lost approximately $2,200 due to a hard-fought victory by their own horse. By a diminishing neck. That is a 'bad beat.'   

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