So today was the Kentucky Derby. Yeah, yeah, most of y’all don’t care all that much (thus the placement of this in MPSIMS, not the Pit), but I do. A little and all. Being the horse racing freak I am.
War Emblem won. Good for the horse, good for the jockey. Trainer? Grrr. Bob Baffert is a very successful trainer in this sport. He won the Derby in '97 and '98, and has wooed a wealthy Arab prince into financing multimililon dollar yearling purchases, so Bob always has seriously high quality racing stock. Being friends with a trainer of Grade I winning horses (who regularly compete against Baffert), I hear all kinds of icky stories about the guy.
This year so many horses were entered, they had to cut out about 5-6 entrants (Derby is limited to 20; earnings determine who runs). Earlier in the week, Baffert shocked everyone by entering the clearly outclassed Danthebluegrassman in the race. NO ONE thought he was running, particularly the trainer of Windward Passage–who ended up getting snubbed out of the race as a result. Oh, and gee, apparently there’s some bad blood between Baffert and the owner of the excluded horse. And by golly, yesterday morning, overmatched Danny boy “tied up” (basically, severe muscle cramps) and had to be…gasp…SCRATCHED. Suuuuuuuuuuuuurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrree. And of course, it was too late to get Windward Passage in. That whole thing just reeks.
Then…the winner. Despite all the money, Baffert had no Derby quality horses. Baffert saw this horse War Emblem win the Illinois Derby last month, and said hey, I can BUY my Derby horse! I’ll go convince the prince! Seven figures are exchanged, and voila. This race is the first War Emblem has run as a trainee of Baffert and possession of a Saudi Arabian prince.
ANYbody else could’ve won and I’d be fine. Really.
[sub]this mundane pointless rant brought to you by the insignificant and ignored sports fans of America[/sub]