Friday, July 31, 2009

The Grade 1 Haskell Invitational

Sunday will be the next step on the road to the Hall Of Fame for superfilly Rachel Alexandra or so says everyone in the sport of Thoroughbred racing. The big question going in is can anyone truly beat her? Let's take a look at each of the seven horses in the Grade 1 $1,250,000 Haskell Invitational and see what we get:

#1 Duke Of Mischief- The Iowa Derby winner posted his career best Beyer figure in winning that race at odds of 14-1. It was only his second-ever race on a fast dirt track. It was also against much less than he will face here. The things he has in his favor are a bullet workout on July 25, jockey Eibar Coa aboard again, and trainer David Fawkes is winning at a 19% rate this year. I think the negatives will outweigh the positives with this colt.

#2 Summer Bird- The Grade 1 Belmont winner is kind of a strange duck. He doesn't stand out and he also doesn't recede into the background. I could very easily see him pounce on a speed duel that could develop in front of him and roar past everyone in the stretch. I could also very easily see him not firing and finishing up the track. He has not run since the Belmont win, so he should be fresh. I just think you are more likely to see the latter situation arise than the former.

#3 Papa Clem- The Grade 2 Arkansas Derby winner ran decently in the first two legs of the Triple Crown to finish 4th in the Kentucky Derby and 6th in the Preakness Stakes. He then rested to come back in the Long Branch over this very Monmouth track and finished a dull 3rd after an early stumble. Did he not like the track or was he still flat after a grueling run through the Triple Crown? Honestly, I think it is a little bit of both, so this would be a no from me also.

#4 Munnings- The winner of the Grade 2 Tom Fool at Belmont has never been this far in his career. In fact, the only other time he went more than a mile was the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile and he finished 10th for his worst result ever. His Sire is 2004 Breeders' Cup Sprint winner, Speightstown. This should be the speed in the race (along with Rachel Alexandra) and if there is a speed battle presented, he will certainly be a part of it. I just don't see him being a part of the finish due to the distance.

#5 Atomic Rain- He scored a win in the Long Branch over this racetrack, but there has been talk all week that he might be scratched due to some foot problems. The connections say they are more optimistic the closer it gets to race time, but come on, any possible problems when you are facing the best racehorse in training right now make you an automatic non-factor. Even with "Jersey" Joe Bravo aboard, a definite toss.

#6 Rachel Alexandra- She has won her last seven starts by a staggering total of 63 3/4 lengths. That record includes three Grade 1 wins and three Grade 2 wins. She gets the best jockey in the business right now on her back in Calvin Borel. She is the best horse in the business right now and when you include the fact that I have a thrown out every other horse in this race for one reason or another, I think I can safely say that this fine filly will be in the Winner's Circle on Sunday.

#7 Bunker Hill- Four of his last five workouts have been bullets. He is adding blinkers today. He is 2 for 3 over the Monmouth track. He also lost by seven lengths to Big Drama at Charles Town on June 20. His only other Graded appearance was in a Grade 3 turf race at Churchill Downs on Kentucky Oaks day, finishing 8th. He might have been the favorite in an Allowance race earlier on the card, but there is nothing to justify him running with the likes of what he is against here.

So, in the final analysis, Sunday should be Rachel's day. I plan on just watching her exude greatness and enjoying the dominance. Hopefully, we all can just appreciate what we have in her, for her like might not be seen again for many, many years.

They Are Off would like to pass along Happy Birthday wishes to occasional contributor, Martha Claussen, who will be celebrating as well on Sunday. Tune in again on Monday for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

This Lady Was No Secret

With all the justifiable excitement over Rachel Alexandra running in the Haskell on Sunday at Monmouth Park and facing what promises to be a strong field with Belmont Stakes winner, Summer Bird and Arkansas Derby winner, Papa Clem, expected to be on hand, I thought today would be a nice time to hark back to another fine filly that was awfully tough to tame for those that faced her.

Lady's Secret had greatness inside her from the very beginning. Her Sire was 1973 Triple Crown winner, Secretariat, and with the exception of Risen Star, it could be said she was the greatest progeny he was ever connected with. Lady's Secret won 25 over her 45 lifetime starts and included among those wins were some pretty important Stakes victory. In fact, she went back-to-back in three separate races in 1985 and 1986, the Ruffian Handicap, the Beldame Stakes, and the Maskette Handicap. She nearly did that in the Breeders' Cup Distaff as well, running second to her stablemate, Life's Magic at Aqueduct in 1985, and winning at Santa Anita in 1986. She earned a very stout $3,021,325 during her career and was named Horse Of The Year in 1986 and was inducted into the Hall Of Fame in 1992.

"The Iron Lady" was a great runner in her time and should certainly not be forgotten. In fact, the greatness that Rachel Alexandra is currently displaying should only further reinvigorate our memories of Lady's Secret, for she earned her place in the stratosphere of Thoroughbred greatness.

Tune in again tomorrow for a look at this weekend's Haskell Invitational from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Photo courtesy of

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Opening Day at The Spa

Summer starts tomorrow officially in the racing world. Saratoga opens up in bucolic upstate New York for their annual summer festival of racing. Opening Day certainly won't be lacking for fireworks with 2008 Louisiana Derby winner, Pyro, returning to the races in the $80,500 James Marvin Stakes. Amazingly enough, he will be 6-1 on the morning-line for his comeback try.

Pyro's former trainer, Steve Asmussen, has two runners in the Opening Day feature event, the Grade 3 Schuylerville Stakes. One is the morning-line favorite, Hot Dixie Chick at 4-1, and the other is a longshot, Kinsolving, at 15-1. Hot Dixie Chick gets the riding services of Robby Albarado and Kinsolving will be piloted by Edgar Prado.

You might also want to keep an eye on the two-year-old races throughout the meet at Saratoga. You never know if the next Kentucky Derby winner will be part of the proceedings up there. After all, 2008 Derby winner, Big Brown, first dazzled at Saratoga.

The weather forecast for Wednesday is mostly cloudy with showers and thunderstorms likely in the afternoon with temperatures in the mid 80s. They Are Off certainly wishes the best of luck to everyone on Opening Day at The Spa.

Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Once More With Works

It is going to be a big weekend of racing in the northeast and the main combatants in those events took to the track for their final prep workouts before the races. Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird got a feel for the track at Mountaineer in advance of the Grade 2 $750,000 West Virginia Derby. He worked a half-mile in 49.80 seconds this morning.

Meanwhile, this weekend is also the Grade 1 $1,250,000 Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park. The winners of the other two legs of the Triple Crown will be participating in that race. Preakness winner Rachel Alexandra worked a half-mile in 49.26 seconds at Monmouth Park this morning. Belmont winner Summer Bird worked over a muddy Monmouth strip yesterday morning, covering five furlongs in 1:01.80.

It is unfortunate that Mine That Bird didn't go to the Haskell so we can see all three Triple Crown race winners on the track at the same time, but this way, both events are relevant and it makes for a fuller weekend of enjoyment at the track. Plus, all three still could go on to the Travers at Saratoga later this summer.

Tune in again tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Grade 1 Eddie Read Handicap

The turf meets the surf at Del Mar and the turf is the surf(ace) for the Grade 1 $350,000 Eddie Read Handicap. I am leaning toward #1 Monterey Jazz as my selection for this race. He has won five previous times over the greenery. His last two Beyers were in the 100s and he threw a bullet workout on the board on July 20 at Hollywood Park. I just think there is a lot to like here. The Irish-bred, #8 Whatsthescript, might be a possibility, but keep in mind he finished behind the top pick in the Grade 2 American Handicap at Hollywood Park on July 4. In two lifetime starts over the Del Mar turf, he has a win and a second. Turf ace Corey Nakatani rides #3 Global Hunter in the Eddie Read and he is definitely worth a look in here. His last four results (all with graded company) have been disappointing, but his latest workouts are staggering and he might fetch a price in here. #2 Dakota Phone will certainly be a price pick in here. He gets Garrett Gomez in the irons, a definite plus. He only lost by a nose to Hollywood Gold Cup winner, Rail Trip, in the Santana Mile at Santa Anita in April. He just has not been on the turf in forever and a win by him would be difficult to imagine. So, here is the play in the Grade 1 Eddie Read:

$5 WIN #1
$4 EX BOX #1+ #8
$1 TRI 1-8 WITH 1-8 WITH 2-3

TOTAL- $17

Keep in mind that They Are Off accepts no responsibility for any wagers made in conjunction with these suggestions. Tune in again on Monday for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Props For A Favorite

We have mentioned on this blog in the past that we are certainly fans of ESPN's Jeannine Edwards. I am glad to see that there are others that share in that opinion. Tom Jones (no, not THAT Tom Jones) on has listed Jeannine as #6 on his list of favorite female sportscasters working currently. Personally, They Are Off thinks that Jeannine should be higher on the list, but kudos to Tom Jones for recognizing Jeannine's excellent work and ability. Here is the link:

Hopefully, everyone enjoyed good luck on Opening Day at Del Mar as well. Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Other 50-1 Shot

Well, we have all fallen in love with Mine That Bird and the truly unbelievable story of his trip from finishing 4th in the Sunland Park Derby to being vanned to Churchill Downs by his trainer, who was utilizing crutches, to winning the Kentucky Derby. Honestly, the whole thing could have been made into a movie had he gone on to win the Triple Crown (and really, it still could be a good flick, because it is just that improbable). However, we are being remiss in dismissing the other 50-1 shot that won the Derby this decade, Giacomo in 2005.

You should remember the hype leading up to the Derby that year centered on Bellamy Road, who had devastated the field in the Wood Memorial and was a strong favorite. Afleet Alex was also a big story entering the first Saturday in May that year, with Alex's Lemonade Stands prevalent at many racetrack around the country (not to mention the fact that he would go on to win the Preakness and Belmont after the Derby). Giacomo had only won once before the Derby in his career and ran 4th in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby in his final prep before the Kentucky Derby.

Bellamy Road was done in by the frenetic pace on the front end and Afleet Alex ran a decent 3rd in the Derby, but would get knocked off by both 50-1 shot, Giacomo, who closed to win and 71-1 shot, Closing Argument (who honestly ran the best race on Derby Day, lying close to the pace and holding on for second behind Giacomo). That exacta made for a nearly $10,000 payout for the $2 return. It also made up for the failure of his Sire, Holy Bull, in the Kentucky Derby eleven years earlier, when he ran 12th on Derby Day as the betting choice. The victory also got jockey Mike Smith off the Derby donut, which he was as puzzled by as the rest of us.

Giacomo ran 3rd in the 2005 Preakness and 7th in the Belmont Stakes that year, both times behind Afleet Alex. In fact, he only won once more in his career, the 2006 San Diego Handicap. He did run a gallant 4th in the Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs that year. So, while Mine That Bird is being lionized in 2009, and rightly so, let us not forget the Derby hero of 2005, because he deserves all the respect we can give him, rightly so once again.

Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Big Monday

Not to borrow from ESPN's college basketball, but today was certainly a big Monday in the horse racing world. First of all, Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird worked out as a prep for his run on August 2 in the West Virginia Derby. He went a solid half-mile in 48 1/5 seconds. I have to think that Chip Woolley is happy with that effort. In addition, 2009 Preakness winner Rachel Alexandra went six furlongs at Saratoga in 1:13.4 to get ready for her go in the Haskell Invitational on the same date at Monmouth Park.

Also, the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky sale kicked off and a Birdstone colt topped the take with a bid of $400,000 from Sheikh Mohammed. Hmmm, both the Derby and Belmont winner (Summer Bird) were Sired by Birdstone and now a Birdstone horse tops the opening day of one of the biggest sales of the season. I am certainly glad to see that some people are figuring things out. By the way, the Dam of this $400,000 colt has Seattle Slew present on that side of the ledger.

Finally, don't forget that summer starts this week with Del Mar opening up. Just as the Triple Crown fervor dies down, we have another wave of excitement coming and I, for one, love it.

Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Friday, July 17, 2009

The Grade 2 Virginia Derby

OK, we gave you the 9-1 winner of the Hollywood Gold Cup last week, we just forgot to mention that you should have had a straight bet on him to win (like the author did). That is simply an error of omission. Won't happen again this week with the Grade 2 $750,000 Virginia Derby at Colonial Downs. Barbaro's brother, Nicanor, is 7-2 on the morning-line and the favorite off of back-to-back turf wins at Delaware Park. While I think Nicanor is impressive thus far on the turf, I cannot put him on top at that price against this company with that resume'. Instead, I will go with #1 Affirmatif. He is 8-1 on the morning line (a price to like) and has never been worse than 2nd in four previous efforts. The Pletcher trainee's only graded effort was taken off the turf at Belmont and run in the slop on June and he still finished 2nd. The distance of 1 1/4 miles might be a question, but I am willing to gamble if I am getting 8-1 on an animal of his obvious quality. Next comes #9 Battle Of Hastings, who was a winner last time out in the Grade 2 Colonial Turf Cup over this course. He is only adding an extra sixteenth of a mile to that effort here and his two July workouts have both been bullet efforts. He is certainly live today and I expect him to be the favorite when all is said and done. For third, I will put #4 Nicanor. I think he might get caught up in what I think will be a decent speed battle in here. There is plenty of early speed in this field and that is why my top two picks seem to like to sit just off the pace. The other issue I have is that Nicanor really hasn't beaten any top-flight competition yet, so I prefer to take a wait and see attitude. An attractive longshot in here also might be the Colonial Turf Cup runner-up, #6 Straight Story. He is 10-1 on the morning line and he did overcome a monumentally wide trip to just miss in that earlier Colonial effort. Here is the play for the Grade 2 Virginia Derby:

$5 WP #1
$1 EX BOX 1-4-6-9

TOTAL- $22

Remember, They Are Off accepts no responsibility for any wagers made in conjunction with these suggestions. Tune in again on Monday for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Jersey Girl

The connections of 2009 Preakness winner Rachel Alexandra announced on Tuesday that she will once again face the boys in the Grade 1 $1,000,000 Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park on August 2.

I, for one, think this is a tremendous development for the signature event of the Monmouth meeting. Illinois Derby winner Musket Man is already out for the year after having committed to the event earlier. All that was really scheduled to be present were Grade 1 Belmont Stakes winner, Summer Bird, and Grade 2 Arkansas Derby winner, Papa Clem.

This is also a great thing for Rachel Alexandra herself. Everyone is trying to acclaim her as the greatest filly of all time. She may very well be that indeed, however, she needs to keep racing against the boys to do that. She has already crushed the best 3-year-old fillies currently running and since the connections have already announced that she will not run on synthetic surfaces (like the Breeders' Cup at Santa Anita), she has to try to continue to dominate the best runners going. That means she has to race against the boys rather than winning against the fillies by 20-plus lengths.

Tune in for more tomorrow from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Luke Kruytbosch

Today is a very sad day in the world of horse racing. One year ago today, Churchill Downs and Turf Paradise track announcer Luke Kruytbosch suddenly passed away at the age of 47. Both tracks, of course, held very touching and warm ceremonies honoring the fallen race caller, but Luke's impact was far greater to those he knew than any ceremony could portray. I was part of the Turf Paradise ceremony and eulogizing this close friend of mine it was certainly one of the most difficult things I have had to do.

Luke Kruytbosch will always be a large part of the reason why I am part of the world of horse racing. He is the one who encouraged me to be a race caller myself when I was trying to get my feet off the ground in the business. He alerted me to job opportunities that popped up and would even let me call an occasional race at Turf Paradise to help me build up a demonstration tape. Believe me, I am forever indebted to Luke Kruytbosch for all that he did for me.

I still miss Luke just about everyday. Even after I had been a race caller for many years, I would still check with him about how things were going in the industry or look to him for intelligent advice about my career path and he never disappointed. I would call him usually once a month during the season at Turf Paradise and we always ended the conversation laughing and joking. All I can do now is look back on those phone calls and discussions fondly. It is still very hard to believe that it has already been a year since Luke was taken from us.

For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Vic Stauffer

I would certainly like to join everyone who has wished all the best to Hollywood Park track announcer Vic Stauffer, who was hospitalized this weekend in California. Vic had to miss the Sunday program at Hollywood and was ably replaced by Los Alamitos track announcer Ed Burgart, who had to fill in on short notice.

Get well soon, Vic, and we certainly hope that he will be back for the final week of the spring-summer season at Hollywood Park.

Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Friday, July 10, 2009

The 70th Hollywood Gold Cup

I am going to say that I think we have a key race as far as the Grade 1 $700,000 Hollywood Gold Cup is concerned. That would be the Grade 2 Californian, which was run at Hollywood on June 13. All four horses I am about to recommend ran in that race. My top pick in the Gold Cup is #8 Rail Trip. I think it is entirely possible that he is going to get the lead right away and never give it up. He has never finished worse than 2nd in any of his seven lifetime starts and I expect him to have a very soft pace up top on Saturday. The horse that actually won the Californian is my second choice here, #12 Informed. The Sire is former two-time Breeders' Cup Classic winner, Tiznow, and the six furlong work on July 5 is certainly nothing to sneeze at. #6 Dakota Phone posted Beyers of 100 or better in the last two starts, both Grade 2 races and both resulted in third-place finishes. This gelding has hit the board in all five previous starts at Hollywood Park. Finally, I will include #7 Song Of Navarone to wrap up the top four. He won three in a row earlier this year at Sunland Park and ran 3rd in the Grade 3 Lone Star Park Handicap two starts back. So, here is the play on the Hollywood Gold Cup:

$1 EX BOX 6-7-8-12
$1 TRI 8 with 6-7-12

TOTAL- $18

Please remember that They Are Off accepts no responsibility for any wagers made in conjunction with these suggestions. I wish the best of luck to you all and enjoy what promises to be a fabulous Saturday of racing across the country. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Big Weekend A-Comin

This is going to be one heck of a weekend in the racing world. For starters, it is Arlington Million Preview Day at Arlington Park in Chicago. Cosmonaut and Stream Cat go at it in the Grade 3 Arlington Handicap. Likely Secretariat favorite, Giant Oak, returns to run in the Grade 2 American Derby. Pure Clan will run in the Grade 3 Modesty Handicap.

Gio Ponti will face five others in the Grade 1 Man O' War at Belmont Park. Last year's BC Turf third-place finisher, Dancing Forever, is in, as is Grand Couturier, winner of the Grade 1 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational last year at Belmont. Midships comes from the west coast to run after some nice wins, including the Grade 1 Whittingham Memorial Handicap.

It is also the Summit Of Speed at Calder Race Course in South Florida. Benny The Bull is among the headliners on the thirteen-race program, which includes eight Stakes races.

I almost forgot to mention that a fine field will go to the post in the Grade 1 $700,000 Hollywood Gold Cup, featuring Life Is Sweet, who is trying to become the first filly to win the race since 1968.

We will certainly have a good look at this unbelievable weekend in tomorrow's post. Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Mine That Bird Update

The 2009 Kentucky Derby winner, Mine That Bird, worked out over the track at Churchill Downs this morning, covering a half-mile in 49.40 seconds and galloping out five furlongs in 1:01.80. Mine That Bird is being pointed to the West Virginia Derby at Mountaineer Racetrack and Casino on August 1 for his next start by trainer Chip Woolley. Woolley intends to work Mine That Bird each of the next two Mondays at Churchill Downs.

The connections settled the rider problem they had by going back to Mike Smith, who rode the Derby winner to a game second in the 2009 Preakness behind fabulous filly, Rachel Alexandra. Calvin Borel has committed to ride Warrior's Reward in the Jim Dandy at Saratoga on the same date as the West Virginia Derby.

Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Monday, July 06, 2009

More From Martha

They Are Off favorite Martha Claussen has a new story in the latest edition of the SureBet Racing News. Her story is on Page 20 and here is the link to get to her story, which deals with her experiences trying to qualify for the DRF/NTRA National Handicapping Championship:

I will be trying to qualify myself in October at Delaware Park and Philadelphia Park, so I am looking forward to using Martha's advice to help me get a spot at the Finals.

Tune in for more tomorrow from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Friday, July 03, 2009

The July 4 NYRA Pick 4

Time to try and attack another Pick Four at Belmont Park on Independence Day. There are three graded Stakes races included in this sequence, as well as a turf race for maidens. Here are the horses we like in the wager:

Race 8- The Grade 2 Dwyer- There are two horses to use in the Pick Four wager in this first race. First is the horse that Calvin Borel got off of Mine That Bird to ride and that is #1 Warrior's Reward. He ran 2nd in the Grade 3 Northern Dancer at Churchill last time out and posted a Beyer of 113 the race before (also at Churchill). #4 Masala is the second horse I like in here. His Sire was the speedy Lion Heart and he was a winner last time out at Belmont on June 13. Both of these horses turned in bullet workouts in their most recent works.

Race 9- The Grade 1 Prioress- I will use the entry of the undefeated #1 Cat Moves and #1a Light Green, who returns to the races after winning the last two and nearly two months off. #6 Gabby's Golden Gal took advantage of the speed-favoring track on Belmont Stakes day to win the Grade 1 Acorn. She also turned in two bullet works in the space of eight days in late June. #8 On The Menu is 3 for 4 at the distance and ran 2nd in the fourth of those four races.

Race 10- The Grade 2 Suburban- This is a very wide-open version of the Suburban with several in here having a legitimate chance to win. #3 It's A Bird is working a two-race win streak, including the Grade 2 Oaklawn Handicap and the Grade 3 Lone Star Park Handicap. #4 Asiatic Boy just missed in the Grade 1 Stephen Foster at Churchill, closing with a furious rush to miss by a length to Macho Again. #6 Rising Moon should have no problem with the distance, having run 3rd in the slop in the 1 1/2 mile Brooklyn Handicap on June 5. He just worked a bullet on July 1 over at Aqueduct. #8 Cool Coal Man just went all the way on the lead to win an ungraded Stakes against two others at Belmont on May 30.

Race 11- Maiden Special Weight- Let's see, this is a turf race and there is a tough Christophe Clement entry in here, so you get two for the price of one. Therefore, I call that a single with #1 Wild Entry and #1a Grassy.

So, here is the Pick Four play for Belmont Park on Saturday (based on a $1 minimum):

$1 PICK FOUR: 1-4 with 1-6-8 with 3-4-6-8 with 1
TOTAL: $24

Remember, They Are Off accepts no responsibility for any wagers made in connection with these suggestions. They Are Off will return on Monday with more from the world of racing. Have a Happy Fourth Of July. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Downs After Dark

With the holiday weekend, Churchill Downs was able to hold their evening program on Thursday night this week, as opposed to the Fridays that they have been running of late. Their announced attendance on Thursday night was 33,481. You might think that there is no real significance to that number for a place that has handled the multitudes as well as Churchill Downs has in the past, but you would be wrong. That crowd of 33,481 is an all-time high attendance for the Downs for a non-Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Oaks, or Breeders' Cup program.

It would appear that the "Downs After Dark" program has been a success for Churchill Downs, once they worked out some of the kinks and got things to run somewhat smoothly. It only leads one to believe that someday in the not too distant future we will see a "Derby After Dark". You cannot tell me that Churchill Downs (not to mention NBC) wouldn't love running the greatest spectacle in American racing in front of a prime-time audience. I have to believe that will happen someday soon, it might just make too much sense not to happen.

Tune in tomorrow for a look at this weekend's NYRA Pick Four from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

The Boomer Is Back

Those of you who pay close attention to this blog know that the "Links" section includes several websites manned by good friends of mine. One such person is Greg "Boomer" Wry, whose site is Boomer had been the voice of Yavapai Downs, the racetrack at Prescott, Arizona for many years, but was not there at the start of the 2009 season. The Prescott Courier is reporting that Boomer has returned to the microphone at Prescott and here is the link to that story:

That is very good news for Yavapai Downs and racing in Arizona in general. It gives my home state a very strong Daily Double of announcers of Boomer at Yavapai and the strong Frank Miramahdi at Turf Paradise, whose work you can currently catch at Stockton, California, by the way. Be sure to give a listen to the Boomer as well at Yavapai and congratulations to him for returning to his rightful post.

Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!