March 19, 1989 |
When it comes to instant millions, everyone seems to remember the Seattle Slew story. The colt was purchased for a mere $17,500 and went on to win the 1977 Triple Crown. Slew was then syndicated for millions and has continued to be a money machine at stud for Three Chimneys Farm outside Lexington, Ky. There are other thoroughbred success stories. Mercedes Won, a leading 3-year-old, was purchased for $5,700, but has already won more than $600,000.
October 12, 1986 |
In a handsome Georgian-style building across the street from the main gates of the Saratoga Racecourse is the National Museum of Racing. Horse lovers find it fascinating. But this small museum holds equal fascination for anyone who is curious about the social evolution of America, from its days as a colony up to the present. The first display is a dazzling array of racing silks. The first tunic, purple with red sleeves and a black velvet cap, are identified as "The Queen's Colors."
March 1, 2013 |
Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens reached a tentative agreement Friday on a new contract that would make the Super Bowl most valuable plater the highest-paid player in NFL history. If the deal is finalized, the veteran quarterback would receive in excess of $120 million over six years, according to a person close to the negotiations who spoke on condition of anonymity because the contract has not yet been signed. Flacco would earn more than the $20-million average salary Drew Brees receives with the New Orleans Saints.
June 11, 2011 |
Reporting from Elmont, N.Y. A wild and unpredictable Triple Crown season came to an appropriately stunning conclusion Saturday as 24-1 longshot Ruler On Ice won the 143rd running of the Belmont Stakes. Ruler On Ice, a gelding who didn't run in either the Kentucky Derby or the Preakness and was wearing blinkers for the first time, sat just off the lead for most of the race, and then jockey Jose Valdivia Jr. let him surge to the lead with a quarter of a mile to go. The temperamental but talented colt ran hard to the wire, holding off Stay Thirsty (second)
July 7, 2013 |
At least super horse Game On Dude gave a sad day at Betfair Hollywood Park a grand finale. At least when the bulldozers start doing their work in January, those in Saturday's crowd of 6,493 for the 74th — and last — Hollywood Gold Cup, will have their memories. And yes, if you know anything about horse racing in Southern California, you know that an attendance figure of 6,493 for a $500,000 Grade I race with the reputation and history of the Hollywood Gold Cup is a disgrace.
November 3, 1988 |
I guess my all-time favorite on a race track was Man o' War. Name, not horse. With that handle, he didn't have to be good. Man o' War is as felicitous a collection of vowels and consonants as ever graced a winner's circle. It's not often a name that good and a horse that good get together. Horses with great names, like good guys, seem to finish last. Whenever you find a Blue Prince or a Red Shadow on the program, save your $2. He won't beat a horse.
July 9, 1995 |
Serena's Song's weakness has been discovered. The nation's top 3-year-old filly doesn't really want to run 1 1/4 miles. The excuse at the Kentucky Derby was the pace was too fast when she finished 16th in her first try at the distance, but there were no excuses when she was upset by Golden Bri in the $250,000 Coaching Club American Oaks on Saturday at Belmont Park.
January 3, 1990 |
The history of horse racing in the 1970s has been neatly and elegantly summarized in a single phrase: the decade of champions. It was the era of Secretariat, Seattle Slew, Affirmed, Alydar, Spectacular Bid and Ruffian, horses whose greatness suggested that the thoroughbred species was advancing to a new plateau. This didn't happen, of course. Since Spectacular Bid retired in 1980, the subsequent years have not produced a runner who could be described properly as a super-horse.
August 27, 1989 |
Fifteen minutes up the road from the Kremlin, a couple of retired Red Army colonels lean against the rail and watch the ponies lumber to the finish. "A nag," says the one with a dozen medals and a spectacular handlebar moustache. "Next time I put my money on a horse that doesn't limp," says the Hero of Socialist Labor. They turn away in disgust, letting a stack of betting slips flutter from their hands. If they could buy a beer, they'd buy six, but they can't, so they smoke and bet again.
December 15, 1988 |
The groups running the Eclipse Awards keep trying, and maybe one of these years they'll get it right. The Eclipses, racing's most prestigious awards, are determined by a vote of about 200 turf reporters, track racing secretaries and Daily Racing Form personnel, and in many years since the program began in 1971, there have been glitches in the system.