May 2, 2013 |
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Todd Pletcher has won 2,500 races in the last 10 years. The horses he trains have accounted for nearly $200 million in purses during that time. He has accumulated somewhere around $20 million for himself. His horses are 1-for-31 in the Kentucky Derby. "I think a couple ways you can look at it," Pletcher said. "I think for one, people seem to think that I've been training for 50 years or something, when in reality I first got my license in '96 and I think we had our first Derby starters in 2000.
May 6, 2011 |
If you love the pageantry and color of the Kentucky Derby but just wish the excitement could last a little longer, the 137th edition of the world's greatest horse race is made for you. There are several words that can describe the 20 thoroughbreds that will leave the starting gate for the 11th race at Churchill Downs late Saturday afternoon. "Beautiful" is one of them. "Expensive" is another. But the operative word as it pertains to the running of the race - using the verb generously - is "slow.
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 4, 2015 |
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Everybody at the Daily News has Stan Hochman stories. Mine, naturally, involves the racetrack. I met Stan at the 1984 Preakness at Pimlico. I was covering horse racing for an eight-month-old all-sports paper in Baltimore, my hometown. I had no idea what I was doing, but it was the perfect place to learn and make mistakes because nobody noticed for a very simple reason: Nobody was buying the paper. It was right after the Preakness post-position draw. I was asking questions/making suggestions to John Parisella, who trained a longshot named Fight Over.
May 15, 2010 |
BALTIMORE - After the Kentucky Derby, just about every trainer and jockey has an excuse - except the winner. The Preakness is about finding out which excuses were valid and whether the Derby was the true measure of the runners. This Preakness, however, is a bit different, because seven of the 12 horses did not run in the Derby, and the form of even the most obvious contenders is hardly overwhelming. Consider that Derby winner Super Saver is only 3-for-7. Paddy O'Prado, third in the Derby, is 1-for-7.
May 5, 2015 |
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - His two Kentucky Derby horses had been off the track and back in their stalls for an hour Wednesday morning. The day's work was done, but Bob Baffert was not inclined to leave, so the Hall of Fame trainer held court for a good hour. Even as the listeners dissipated to just a handful, Baffert kept talking, with or without questions. He was reliving his training life generally, his Derby life specifically - Cavonnier's nose loss in 1996 when he was sure he would never get another chance, the three wins in six years from 1997 to 2002, the terrible disappointment with Point Given in 2001.
March 30, 2013 |
Flash back 24 years, and Shug McGaughey's long-term future on the first Saturday in May seemed like such a given. Though his champion Easy Goer lost what was supposed to be his coronation, finishing second to eventual horse of the year Sunday Silence in the 1989 Kentucky Derby, all signs pointed to the would-be Hall of Fame trainer getting, at the very least, several more legitimate cracks at the American classic. "Obviously there is a lot of water under the bridge from those days," McGaughey said this month.
April 11, 1998 |
Oaklawn Park, located downtown near the thermal baths, just three blocks from President Clinton's boyhood home on Clark Street, has been Arkansas' biggest tourist attraction almost from the day it was established 94 years ago. But it has never had a visitor quite like the one standing here in Stall 39 in a tin-roofed barn on the back side. Favorite Trick, a modest dark bay 3-year-old colt who has experts scratching their heads in puzzlement, is here to run in today's $500,000 Arkansas Derby on the last big weekend of Kentucky Derby prep races.
May 6, 2012 |
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Last May, jockey Mario Gutierrez was the leading rider at Hastings Park in Vancouver, British Columbia, the Kentucky Derby a faraway event that he watched on television in the jockey's room. He migrated to Southern California this winter, going from horse racing's minors to the majors, hoping to get better mounts. Prominent owner J. Paul Reddam noticed the 25-year-old from Mexico and told his trainer Doug O'Neill to give the virtual unknown a chance. "He just really looked good in the irons to me," Reddam said.
May 16, 1998 |
Forget everything you've heard about today's 123d running of the Preakness Stakes. Start all over. The 2-1 favorite, Coronado's Quest, isn't coming after all. A bruised right hind foot discovered yesterday morning after a gallop sidelined the colt just hours before he was to have boarded a van for a predawn ride to Pimlico Race Track, where the $1 million second leg of the Triple Crown will be run today at 5:27 p.m. That means a new favorite,...