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Kentucky Derby

SPORTS
June 5, 2014
A WISE MAN told me years ago that it was not necessarily going to take a great horse to win the Triple Crown for the first time since 1978. He told me it would be won in a year when there was a solid, consistent colt running against a group that was neither solid nor consistent. This may be that year. As a charter member of the California Chrome fan club, I will say nothing to denigrate the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner. I love this horse. Still, only time will tell us where the colt belongs in relation to the legendary horses.
SPORTS
June 4, 2014 | By Stan Hochman, Daily News Staff Writer
IT'S THE EARS. It's gotta be the ears. You're looking for answers to the riddle of California Chrome, how this humbly bred colt, with its geezer trainer and its loud co-owner and its 42-year-old jockey, wearing the ugliest silks in recent memory, has a chance to make horse racing history, go ahead, start with the ears. Chrome will be odds-on on June 7, in the Belmont. His breeding screams that he can't go a mile-and-a-half against rested rivals. The colt has half-a-ton of skills.
SPORTS
May 20, 2014 | BY DICK JERARDI, Daily News Staff Writer jerardd@phillynews.com
BALTIMORE - It was 5 p.m. Saturday afternoon. Pimlico was being overrun by a record crowd of 123,469, the Preakness just 80 minutes away. Standing calmly just outside stall 40 that housed California Chrome, his Kentucky Derby winner, trainer Art Sherman was posing for photographs, signing programs and telling stories. There was the time he got off a flight from Miami to ride at Bowie and, in those first 10 seconds could not breathe, it was so cold. He wore a woman's leotard to stay warm when he rode.
SPORTS
May 19, 2014 | By Bob Ford, Inquirer Columnist
BALTIMORE - The story got better for California Chrome on Saturday, and it was pretty good already. The chestnut colt that hasn't lost a race as a 3-year-old followed up his Kentucky Derby victory two weeks ago with an authoritative Preakness Stakes win to set up a potential Triple Crown scenario for the Belmont Stakes on June 7. Twelve other horses have been in this position since Affirmed won the Triple Crown in 1978, and all of them either...
SPORTS
May 19, 2014 | By Frank Fitzpatrick, Inquirer Columnist
Each spring at Triple Crown time, when thoroughbred racing briefly flowers on the American sports landscape like an exquisite azalea, I think of Joe Bummer. His actual name escapes me these four-plus decades later, but I'm certain it couldn't have described him any better than the nickname my friends and I gave him. (The actual name we called him was a Yiddish word for perennial dissatisfaction, but after 40-some years I can neither pronounce nor recall it.) Joe was a railbird at Garden State Park and Brandywine Raceway.
SPORTS
May 16, 2014 | By Dick Jerardi, Daily News Columnist
BALTIMORE - So what has changed since the May 3 Kentucky Derby? Well, 16 of the 19 Derby horses will not be in the Preakness starting gate, the second through fourth Derby finishers instead awaiting the June 7 Belmont Stakes. Instead of having a month between races, Derby winner California Chrome has only 2 weeks. This race really does appear to have the quality early speed the Derby promised on paper, but did not deliver on the track. And CC will be something like 2-5 instead of 5-2. That is what happens when the Derby winner runs at Pimlico after five consecutive wins by a combined 26 lengths.
SPORTS
May 16, 2014 | BY DICK JERARDI, Daily News Staff Writer jerardd@phillynews.com
AFTER THE Kentucky Derby draw, there was some concern that favorite California Chrome might be surrounded by all the speed to his outside. By the time the field had gone 200 yards, Chrome was sitting third in solid position, 16 horses behind him. After yesterday's Preakness draw at Pimlico, there is at least a chance that the Derby's potential scenario could actually happen. Or Chrome, drawn into post 3 in the 10-horse field, might be so fast and so versatile that, even though there is definite speed to his outside and potential speed to his inside, he will find a way to get good position by the finish line, 330 yards from the starting gate, position so good that everybody will just be waiting for him to unleash that "move" when he heads for the finish line the second time.
SPORTS
May 5, 2014 | BY DICK JERARDI, Daily News Staff Writer jerardd@phillynews.com
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - A decade ago, Churchill Downs was in the midst of a major renovation. A few hours before the 2004 Kentucky Derby, it really looked as if the world might end - lightning, thunder, a deluge. The area was quickly becoming a construction zone/flood zone. John Servis was waiting out the final hours in the barn, not far from the stall that housed the unbeaten Pennsylvania-bred Smarty Jones owned by Roy and Pat Chapman. The Philadelphia Park-based trainer had guided the Arkansas Derby to this moment flawlessly.
SPORTS
May 2, 2014 | BY DICK JERARDI, Daily News Staff Writer jerardd@phillynews.com
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - In a perfect world, Kentucky Derby favorite California Chrome would have drawn outside the other speed horses, where traffic is less likely to be an issue. Also in a perfect world, the Derby field would be limited to a rational 14, not an irrational 20, the biggest field allowed in any American race. Nothing is close to perfect in horse racing, a sport where what you think you know often becomes irrelevant a second after the horses leave the starting gate. So, trying to overanalyze yesterday afternoon's post position draw is really not worth the effort.
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