April 10, 2012 |
Derby fever is springing up all over. Owner Kendall Hansen has it now, saying he "can hardly work" as he counts down the week before his horse named Hansen runs in the Kentucky Derby on May 5. First, Hansen has one more prep race, and that's the Blue Grass Stakes on Saturday at Keeneland, about a 90-minute drive from Louisville. The near-white colt will be facing about a dozen rivals on the synthetic Polytrack, including fellow Derby hopefuls Dullahan and Howe Great. While Hansen remains No. 1 in the Associated Press' latest Run to the Roses' Top 10, Gemologist affirmed his No. 2 status ahead of No. 3 Union Rags with a hard-fought win in the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct on Saturday.
May 6, 2011 |
ABOUT THE RACE When: Tomorrow, 6:24 p.m. post time (Race 11) Where: Churchill Downs, Louisville, Ky. TV: NBC, beginning at 4 p.m. (Versus has undercard starting at 11 a.m.) Wagering Info: 1-888-BET-2-WIN or www.phonebet.com Distance: 1 1/4 miles. Weights: 126 pounds. Weather: Temperatures in the 60s with a 50 percent chance of rain during the day. Purse: $2,196,800 (if 20 start). First place: $1,436,800. Second place: $400,000. Third place: $200,000.
May 4, 2012
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - I do not think this Kentucky Derby is all that complicated. With a few exceptions, there are far more knowns than unknowns with these 20 horses. It is not difficult to envision how this race will be run and which horses might be hindered or helped by the pace scenario. The running styles are self-evident. The race has all types with talent from the front to the back. The Breeders' Cup Juvenile form has held for 6 months. Three horses who did not run on Nov. 5 have forced themselves into the conversation.
May 5, 2012 |
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - As the sun first popped over the trees at Churchill Downs on Friday, Union Rags galloped for the last time before Saturday's 138th Kentucky Derby. "I think he's in good form right now," trainer Michael Matz said a little later in the morning outside Barn 42, the same spot where Matz once stabled the 2006 Kentucky Derby winner, Barbaro. Of his latest Derby horse, the 9-2 second choice in the morning line, owned by Phyllis Wyeth of Chadds Ford, Matz said, "I think he's ready to run. . . . We've been a little bit harder on him since the Florida Derby, getting him peaked a little bit more.
May 5, 1990 |
Mister Frisky, the hero of Puerto Rico, will attempt to add America's greatest racing prize to his string of victories here today in the 116th running of the Kentucky Derby. The Florida-bred colt, whose parents never won a stakes race, will be the first undefeated Derby champion since Seattle Slew if he can beat a competitive field of 14 rivals led by the 7-5 early-line favorite, Summer Squall. Partly cloudy skies and a 40 percent chance of rain have been forecast for Derby Day. The temperature is expected to hit a high of 65. Post time is 5:32 (Channels 6, 7, 4:30 p.m.)
November 5, 1993 |
It is 5:30 a.m. and sunlight is beginning to illuminate the San Gabriel Mountains overlooking Santa Anita Park. Grooms move slowly from stall to stall in backstretch barns that house the 82 Breeders' Cup horses here to compete for tomorrow's $10 million in prize money. There are rows upon rows of the forest-green horse barns, each one like the other, except for Barn 68. Barn 68, with a picturesque view of the main track and grandstand 200 yards away, has been renovated on the north side to accommodate its famous occupant, Hall of Fame jockey Bill Shoemaker.
April 29, 1993 |
Somehow, it all seems so wrong when it should be so right. Bill Shoemaker, the winningest jockey ever, a four-time winner of the Kentucky Derby, is returning to Churchill Downs in an attempt to become only the second man to ride and train a Derby winner. Nothing ever could be the same after the one-car accident on April 8, 1991, in San Dimas, Calif., that left Shoemaker a quadriplegic. His quality of life was gone, but his life wasn't. Somehow, if he just could get back to Louisville with a Derby horse, Shoemaker, even in a wheelchair, would be what he always was, a smallish man with an uncommon affinity with the race horse.
April 29, 1992 |
The scene was haunting, yet somehow perfect. Trainer Phil Hauswald, the local kid from across the Ohio River, trainer of the Derby favorite, was crying. Just across the path, trainer Jack Van Berg, bigger than life, a Hall of Famer, was toasting the biggest victory of his career. Nothing could have summed up the 1987 Kentucky Derby better. Demons Begone had bled badly before the horses went a quarter of a mile and was pulled up. Alysheba came around the field and pulled away at the finish.
September 5, 1998 |
Ever since Greenwood Racing took over Philadelphia Park at the beginning of the decade, everything has been about business generated away from the track, be it off-track betting or phone betting. The facility in Bensalem where the races are run was treated as a nuisance. It was a place where horses could stable and race. But nobody really seemed to care about the few thousand players who rattled around inside the joint. And it showed. Since Hal Handel took over as chief executive officer earlier this year, there seems to be a change in attitude.