Thursday, September 13, 2007

Breeders' Cup Memories in 2,000 Words or Less

Genius Alan, who writes the award-winning Left at the Gate, has embarked on another serious and fruitful endeavor – he is writing a blog for the 2007 Breeders’ Cup. I find this incredibly amazing given that he has the ability to scribe 96,243 words every day at LATG and now has found additional time to further provide his entertaining insight to the horse racing populous. This surge of energy and creativity on Genius Alan’s behalf has led me to a number of possible conclusions, (1) he is taking shorter showers, (2) he skips going to the bathroom, or (3) he eats his lunch sitting at his PC, coating his keyboard with a patina of sourdough breadcrumbs and minced onions from yesterday’s lunch and an occasional splatter of Diet Pepsi. Regardless, I look forward to reading his supplemental blog.

But it bears to mention that I, too, once had a close encounter with the Breeders’ Cup.

The 2004 Breeders’ Cup was held at Lone Star Park. This, of course, was in the days well before some ne’er-do-well Bill Gates wannabe coined the word "blog" because the words "web" and "log" proved difficult to spell. But let me take a few moments to remind you of some of the famous horses that raced in North Texas a few years ago ...

Ghostzapper won the Breeders’ Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge. But how ‘bout Azeri? She would have been the overwhelming favorite in the Distaff and she could have finished her career with another Breeders’ Cup victory, however she raced against the males in the Classic where she finished a respectable 5th. I had even put a little money on her even though she was a hopeless longshot; it was a "girl thing".

In the Juvenile, longshot Wilko, at 28-1, beat Afleet Alex. It’s also the last race he ever won. By the way, that upset still bugs me.

Ouija Board. What a superstar. Our BBC friends describe it best:
Horse of the Year, Ouija Board, rounded off a superb season with a stylish win in the Breeders' Cup after success in both the English and Irish Oaks.[BBC]

It was the first time I ever saw ladies wear pink cowboy hats. I thought they were very cool and in the following weeks, went on a mission to find one for myself. (I found them in a small shop located in the Fort Worth Stockyards).

54,000 people. Perfect weather. Fantastic venue. Excellent racing.

Hopefully, Breeders’ Cup will return to Lone Star Park one day. And maybe then, I might write a real informative blog. All I would have to do is come up with about 96,199 more words ... every day ... (yikes)


Anonymous said...

Nice to read your blog about the BC at Lone Star. I was there also. It was a good show, horses outstanding. I love Azeri and followed her career with passion. I still do, keeping tabs on her broodmare status. Ghostzapper was great that day. I am still miffed about Afleet Alex getting beaten also, but not nearly as much as I was at his Derby!

Joe said...

I waiting to experience my first Breeders Cup in 2008, when Breeders Cup is at the Great Race Place of Santa Anita.

A venue that can handle that kinda of crowd.

It hard for me believe that they ever had BC at Lone Star. Lone Star is too small to handle Derby Day and Dollar Day.

Though getting rid of the failed video poker area and putting the tellers back has helped some. It was better this year, then again I made sure I had a ticket upstairs on the weekends this year.

Even with the temp. stands and all on BC Day, the lines must have been horrible at Lone Star Park.

Santa Anita had over 35,000 people at Sunshine Million Day. I never saw a line longer than 3 deep at the windows.

Though it's cool that NTRA would let mid sized tracks like Lone Star & Monmouth host the BC. It really belongs at Santa Anita, Churchill, or Belmont Park. Places that can handle the huge crowds.

Too bad Churchill didn't bulldoze the Fair Grounds and take over some the depressed land around the track after Katrina and rebuild a new track. That track is need of a serious overhaul. The track was damaged in the hurricane.

Why not build a new track that would be the Crown Jewel of the deep South?? LA has all gaming bucks.

When you look at the LA Downs & Evangline Downs VS Fair Grounds, you say to yourself which track has 3500 claimers and which track has the Graded Stakes??

Breeders Cup & New Orleans could have been regular thing like the NFL, New Orleans and Superbowl was pre-Katrina.

When JerryDome opens in 2009, the Big Easy will have seen it's last SuperBowl. Jerry's Billion dollar wonder will be a regular stop down for the NFL's biggest game.

The Superdome isn't too Super compared to the New Domes and Staduims now.

Anonymous said...

I was at Lone Star for the Breeders Cup. Never again! We weren't in the grandstand. We had bleacher seats. 4 porta potti's overflowing. They ran out of food at the stands. People were buying food off the carts that were bringing it in. Everybody says how wonderful it was. NOT! Not if you were the average Joe outside of the grandstand. Nice plant. Just way too small for a Breeder's Cup event.

suebroux said...


How unfortunate to hear that you had a dismal time at the '04 Breeders' Cup. Frankly, there is nothing worse than inundated port-o-potties and insufficient refreshment services, whether it's at the Breeders' Cup or St. Rita's Carnival. It's downright lousy.

I didn't encounter very many problems in the area I was seated in, which by the way, was not the grandstand but the outside reserved seating. Food service took a while but there was never a wait for "cool refreshment" (read: beer). Granted, the mutuel lines were long but I never got shut out of a race. However, that's not to say that there wasn't a guy or two that was going to put $100 to win on Singletary and didn't get the wager in and subsequently wanted to burn down Lone Star.

And to Joe ... you weren't there???? I could've sworn that was you - two sections over, eight rows up, sitting next to a beautiful Brazilian model!

Anyway, I would be disappointed to see the Breeders' Cup relegated to only a few chosen venues. It will be interesting to see how the Breeders' Cup will be at Monmouth next month.