This past Kentucky Derby weekend my buddy Lenny was in town playing the ponies at Wynn. We were talking during the long breaks on Friday when the great filly Rachel Alexandra won the Oaks by more than 20 lengths.
This lady just may have been able to beat the boys in the Derby, but that’s another story. So we started to talk about one of our favorite horse movies "Let It Ride" and how Richard Dreyfuss tried to keep his winning streak going by asking everyone who they liked in the next race.
The Dreyfuss character Jay Trotter scratched off every horse that was selected until left with just one. That was the horse that he bet and it won. But, that’s a movie and not real life. At least, I think so.
That Saturday, Lenny asks everyone that is making a bet who they liked. Wynn was jammed with lines all day until race time. Several people told me that I Want Revenge could not lose and I just agreed, but most took the normal route with Pioneerof The Nile as the top pick.
There was Friesan Fire and two guys who had the same name Bernie liked West Side Bernie. A few liked Flying Private of the trainer D. Wayne Lukas (he was last, by the way).
There were three college kids with two holding the other one by the arms. They said their buddy wanted all his money on Hold Me Back and they were just holding him back. One guy seemed to be hiding behind his wife, who was going to bet on Nowhere To Hide. She just loved Nick Zito and won with him before.
Then there was the group that had just got into town and planning to party so they were betting Desert Party. An old guy who his grandkids called Papa was betting $10 across on Papa Clem. His wife who just loves Chocolate Candy was making her $2 across on CC.
Musket Man was a big choice off his win in the Hawthorne Derby. Many wanted General Quarters to win because of his old trainer and one horse stable. Dunkirk was way up there in everyone’s selections as gray horses love the off track angle.
Two young well-dressed ladies, Lucy and Nikki, said they loved to go bird watching in the summer and they were betting on No. 17 Summer Bird. They always played 17 when betting roulette and had some success. No. 10 Regal Ransom was a popular number but I could never figure out why. They just said I like 10!
There was a classy couple from Tennessee that loved to go out dancing so they were betting $5 across on Join In The Dance. One guy who may have had a little much to drink kept asking people if they had any good advice so he ended up betting Advice.
One guy from California was betting $100 across on Mr. Hot Stuff as that was what they called him in college. I found one young lady that was betting her $2 on Atomic Rain. She liked the name and he may be fast.
I had a mark on every horse in the race except for a horse by the name of Mine That Bird. It was just like the movie except for one thing. We didn’t bet him.
All my work was wasted until next year and I won’t make that mistake again. The race was over and everyone seemed to have a good time win or lose. Well, mostly lose.
Now it is on to the Preakness and trust me there will be no Triple Crown winner. Heck, there may never be another Triple Crown winner. But, let the party continue and hope for a dry track when we get to Maryland on Saturday, May 16.
Just a note about our hugely successful Kentucky Derby seminar: I picked Mine That Bird to finish last, I just had the race upside down.
Question? Comment? E-mail me at: Richard Saber