The 145th Kentucky Derby 2019

The 145th Kentucky Derby – May 4, 2019
“May the Fourth Be With You!”

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The Kentucky Derby is a horse race for three-year-old thoroughbreds, held annually in Louisville, Kentucky, on the first Saturday in May. The race is one and a quarter miles at Churchill Downs.  The race is known as “The Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports” or “The Fastest Two Minutes in Sports” for its approximate duration, and is also called “The Run for the Roses” for the blanket of roses draped over the winning horse.

“I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day
When it’s cold outside, I’ve got the month of May….”

Churchill Downs, Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Horse racing in Kentucky began in 1789, at the first race course in Lexington.
In 1875, Churchill Downs “Home of the Kentucky Derby” opened in Louisville.
The Kentucky Derby is the  longest continually running sporting event in the USA.
The racetrack occupies 147 acres and features a one-mile dirt racetrack and a seven furlong turf racetrack.

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The Twin Spires, the symbol of the racetrack, on top the grandstands, are the most recognizable architectural feature of Churchill Downs. The spires were built in 1895, designed by architect Joseph Dominic Baldez.

“The sun shines bright on my ol’ Kentucky home….”
“My Old Kentucky Home” became the official state song of Kentucky in 1928.
In 1986 the word “darkies” was changed to “people”.

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The Kentucky Derby 2019 – Churchill Downs, Louisville, Kentucky

In 2015, American Pharoah won the ‪Kentucky Derby‬, the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes to complete the ‪Triple Crown‬!

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American Pharaoh Wins the Belmont Stakes and the Triple Crown!

RUN FOR THE ROSES
Jerry Garcia

Run, run, run for the roses
Quicker it opens, the sooner it closes
Man, oh, man, oh, friend of mine
All good things in all good time
Reach for the sun, catch hold of the moon
They’re both too heavy but what can you do?
Reach for the stars, smack into the sky
You don’t want to live but you’re chicken to die
Oh, you’re chicken to die
Run, run, run for the roses
Quicker it opens, the sooner it closes
Man, oh, man, oh, friend of mine
All good things in all good time
Run for the money, caught short on the rent
Big ideas but the cash’s all spent
The trouble with love is its other face
You just want the club but you don’t want the race
No, you don’t want the race
Run, run, run for the roses
Quicker it opens, the sooner it closes
Man, oh, man, oh, friend of mine
All good things in all good time

 

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CURRENT ODDS (as of Saturday 1:30pm)

Maximum Security 9-2
Improbable 5-1
Tacitus 5-1
Game Winner 6-1
Roadster 9-1
Code of Honor 12-1
By My Standards 15-1
Win Win Win 15-1
War of Will 17-1
Vekoma 22-1
Cutting Humor 25-1
Gray Magician 31-1
Tax 37-1
Long Range Toddy 49-1
Master Fencer 50-1
Spinoff 51-1
Plus Que Parfait 55-1
Country House 64-1
Bodexpress 99-1

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THE RACE IS ON
Don Rollins

I feel tears wellin’ up
Cold and deep inside
Like my heart’s sprung a big break
And a stab of loneliness sharp and painful
That I may never shake
Now, you might say that I was takin’ it hard
Since you wrote me off with a call
But don’t you wager that I’ll hide the sorrow
When I may break right down and bawl
Now the race is on
And here comes pride up the backstretch
Heartaches are goin’ to the inside
My tears are holdin’ back
They’re tryin’ not to fall
My heart’s out of the runnin’
True love’s scratched for another’s sake
The race is on and it looks like heartache
And the winner loses all
One day I ventured in love
Never once suspectin’
What the final result would be
How I lived in fear of wakin’ up each mornin’
And findin’ that you’re gone from me
There’s ache and pain in my heart
For today was the one I hated to face
Somebody new came up to win her
And I came out in second place

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“I’m having a very good day!”

“Let It Ride” (1989) – directed by Joe Pytka
Starring Richard Dreyfus, Teri Garr, David Johansen, Jennifer Tilly
with an amazing performance by Robbie Coltrane!
“Nothing ventured, nothing ventured”

Betting on horse racing is just as historic as the sport of horse racing itself!

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“Even when you know, you never know”.

Read our previous Blog Post “Kentucky Derby Day!” >
https://joshwilltravel.wordpress.com/2013/05/04/pic-of-the-day-04-may-13-kentucky-derby-day/

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The Mint Julep, an iced drink consisting of bourbon, mint and a sugar syrup, is the traditional beverage of the race. The historic drink can be served in an ice-frosted silver julep cup, but most Churchill Downs patrons sip theirs from souvenir glasses (first offered in 1939 and available in revised form each year since) printed with all previous Derby winners. Also, Burgoo, a thick stew of beef, chicken, pork and vegetables, is a popular Kentucky dish served at the Derby.

“I must….descant a little upon the mint-julep, as it is, with the thermometer at 100 degrees F., one of the most delightful and insinuating potations that ever was invented, and may be drunk with equal satisfaction when the thermometer is as low as 70 degrees.”
– 
Captain Frederick Marryat’s diary (1838)

Mint Julep

Derby Day! Have a Mint Julep!



HOT TIP:
Watch the Horses! (from the Churchill Downs website)

As with any athlete, physical appearances are an important factor in sizing up competition. Horse racing is no different, and what your eyes tell you about the horse can be a helpful tool in betting. Here’s just a few tips on what to look for as the horses come into the Paddock, but remember that, like your mom always said, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” It’s difficult to make judgments based solely on appearance.

  1. Ears – If the horse’s ears are pricked, meaning they are large and pointed up, and its head is high and confident, you can assume that the horse is alert, aware of their surroundings, and ready to race. You don’t want to bet on a horse that’s ears are flattened back, or hanging its head low and inattentive.
  2. Hair – Like humans, a good hair day goes a long way! While the horses are in the Paddock, take a good look at their hair. A nice shiny coat is an indication that the horse is in good condition; it’s a general sign of the horse’s health and well-being.
  3. Muscle Definition – Most super-star athlete have prominent muscles and horses are no different. Be sure to look for nice, toned muscles around the horse’s chest and rib cage area. You want to bet on a horse that has defined muscles near their rib cage, and isn’t overweight or carrying too much fat.
  4. Nerves – It’s natural to have some nerves before competition, but over anxious horses aren’t necessarily a good bet. Look at the horse’s behavior in the paddock, and look closely at the sweat on his/her coat. If the horse is too fidgety or sweating too much, then the horse may be wasting too much energy before it has even hit the racetrack.

Other Factors to Consider:
The odds of winning, race history, work-outs, the jockey, the trainer, expert advice, statistical records, post position, track condition, weather, and even the horse’s birthdate.

Have Fun!

Not every wager has to be a brain teaser! Plenty of fans win big by randomly picking a horse. Some people choose their lucky number, others draw a number out of a hat, and some select their favorite color jockey silk or favorite horse name. There are lots of fun ways to handicap a horse race, so choose the best method that works for you!

OUR EXPERT PICKS (for amusement only, gamble at your own risk):
WIN: #7 Maximum Security
PLACE: #17 Roadster
SHOW: #3 By My Standards
LONGSHOT/Superfecta/Upset: #14 Win Win Win

GOOD LUCK!



UPDATED 4 MAY 2019 18:30 – THE RESULTS!
Maximum Security won the race, but was disqualified for interference….
so COUNTRY HOUSE WINS at 65-1!

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The Winner is Maximum Security! Country House!

Payouts:
Country House: $132.40 (Win), $56.60 (Place), $24.60 (Show)
Code of Honor: $15.20 (Place), $9.80 (Show)
Tacitus: $5.60 (Show)
$2 Exacta: (20-13) $3,009.60
$1 Trifecta: (20-13-8) $11,475.30

Until next year!

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Nyquist wins the 2016 Kentucky Derby!

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2017 Kentucky Derby – Always Dreaming! (Lookin At Lee, Battle of Midway)



 

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Super Bowl 50 – BRONCOS WIN!

Super Bowl 50 – DENVER BRONCOS WIN!

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It’s Monday afternoon, the day after. Did you go to work today?

I have a massive headache.

I guess it’s a good headache. I celebrated the Broncos winning Super Bowl 50!

(Read the previous Blog for the “set-up” on the Denver Broncos and Super Bowl 50)

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I predicted the Broncos would win 27-17, the final score was 24-10.

And there was much rejoicing! The Denver Orange Rush – Orange Crush 2.0 DOMINATED! Fans celebrated into the night and early morning, both in Denver and around the world. Peyton Manning got another ring, drank a lot of Budweiser and went to Disneyland today!

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We had a party and watched the game.

On the Menu: Baked Buffalo wings, crudité plate with ranch dressing, garlic hummus & fresh made guacamole with tortilla chips, pistachio nuts, Doritos cool ranch chips, lightly salted peanuts, mini twist pretzels, pepperoncini kettle chips and MEGA peanut M&Ms. NOTE: It was a non-alcohol day, so orange/pineapple/cran-raspberry juice, iced espresso and coke were the beverages of the day. And of course there were Oranges!

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ORANGE! GO BRONCOS!

Halftime Show (for better or worse)

Coldplay just sucks. Pop music that doesn’t matter. Someone asked when they saw the rainbow motif, “Are they gay?” Other really snarky comments were tweeted. Then Bruno Mars got uptown funky, and was the highlight of the Halftime show, you can’t not like him. And then we were treated to Beyonce’s crotch! I think I like her old stuff better. Nothing wrong with a little “booty-shaking” at the Super Bowl though! It was better than “Up With People” or the New Kids On The Block. I was entertained (for better or worse).

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Bruno Mars getting’ uptown funky at Halftime!

 

BRONCOS FOR THE WIN!

Big Congratulations to everyone involved! I thanked them in the previous Blog, and I’ll thank them all again! This win was sweeeeeeet!

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“Now I’ve won the Super Bowl…”

And then Peyton thanked Budweiser, G-d and Papa John…

Here’s the real CHAMPION of Super Bowl 50:
Assistant Coach of the Year Wade Phillips!

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Assistant Coach of the Year Wade Phillips, defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

And he can take a hit: (RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO SEE VIDEO) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAMJ2zXS19Q 

The Denver Defense won the game! They dominated all season long. The “Orange Rush” was the deciding factor in every game they won, and the secondary was exceptional.  the Orange Crush 2.0 excelled at pressuring the QB, executing pass coverage and making big plays when needed. And all three were key factors in the Broncos victory.

MVP Von Miller

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Von Miller earned the Super Bowl MVP with 2.5 sacks and two forced fumbles on Carolina Panther’s quarterback Cam Newton.

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The Empire State Building in New York City Lit Orange & Blue for the Broncos Win!

Aqib Talib?

Now I’m going to talk about Aqib Talib and his OUT OF CONTROL BEHAVIOR. He should have been ejected (or benched by Denver) in the first quarter! He should have been traded after the eye poke against the Colts in November! He cost the Broncos 35 yards in penalty yards in the first quarter of Super Bowl 50 with two personal fouls, including an INTENTIONAL FACEMASK!

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WTF? Personal Foul 15 yards, Automatic First Down!

Late in the fourth quarter the Indianapolis Colts had pivotal third down, but Talib was hit with an unnecessary roughness penalty for INTENTIONALLY POKING Allen in the eye. He cost the Broncos the game against the Colts and was suspended without pay for the next game against the Kansas City Chiefs for his eye-poke of Colts tight end Dwayne Allen. After the game, Talib didn’t even remember poking Allen. “I don’t even remember, man,” he told USA TODAY “Just mad. I can’t even remember, man. I don’t know.”

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This was an INTENTIONAL FACEMASK! Personal Foul 15 yards, Automatic First Down!

Here are Aqib Talib’s 2015-2016 Stats:

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What the F*ck? Is Aqib Talib’s play so valuable that he should be allowed to cost the team a win and give the Broncos a black eye along with the other team’s player? Do we need a player who commits intentional penalties and deliberately injures other players? If the Broncos had lost, there would have been a lot of questions about his first quarter play!

And what about Cam Newton? What a LOSER! He got beat. He got punished. He was sacked six times and he fumbled in the fourth quarter with four minutes left when Von Miller threw him to the ground. Not only did Newton not go for the loose football, he jumped back after the Broncos’ defenders dove for it.

After his behavior this year and all his trademark celebrations: his dabbing and dancing, his fake jump shots after touchdowns, he completed 18 of 41 passes for 265 yards and ended the game with one interception and two fumbles. He was throwing a tantrum on the sideline and in the end zone during the fourth quarter, showed little respect to the winning opposing team and then acted badly after the game.

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Cam Newton’s New Dab! What a Baby!

Cam Newton only spent five minutes an the post game press conference before bolting. “They just played better than us. I don’t know what you want me to say. I’m sorry. They made more plays than us, and that’s what it came down to. We had opportunities. It wasn’t nothing special that they did. We dropped balls. We turned the ball over. We gave up sacks, threw errant passes. That’s it. They scored more points than us.”  After the constant beating from the Broncos Defense, poor sportsmanship, bad behavior and a bruised ego was all he had left after the game.

 BRONCOS WIN! FIRE PHIL SIMMS!

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Only a few of the Tweets from the AFC Championship Game:

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And only a few from Super Bowl 50:

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Well, it was a VERY GOOD DAY! The Broncos won the Super Bowl! I am very happy.

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Oh Yeah! The Denver Broncos Win Super Bowl 50!

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This just in! Dead & Company headlining at Bonnaroo 2016 in Manchester, Tennessee on June 9th and will hit the road for a summer tour starting June 10th!

Dead & Company Tour Dates 2016
June 10 – Charlotte, NC @ PNC Music Pavilion
June 16 – Cincinnati, OH @ Riverbend Music Center
June 17 – Noblesville, IN @ Klipsch Music Center
June 20 – Camden, NJ @ BB&T Pavilion
June 21 – Saratoga Springs, NY @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center
June 23 – Bristow, VA @ Jiffy Lube Live
June 25 & 26 – Flushing, NY @ Citi Field
June 28 – Hartford, CT @ Xfinity Theatre
July 2 & 3 – Boulder, CO @ Folsom Field
July 7 – Detroit, MI @ DTE Energy Music Theatre
July 9 & 10 – East Troy, WI @ Alpine Valley Music Theatre
July 13 – Pittsburgh, PA @ First Niagara Pavilion
July 15 & 16 – Boston, MA @ Fenway Park

The jam band is also scheduled to appear on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on February 18th.

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Super Bowl 50 at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara, California

WIN BEN STEIN’S MONEY!

I am reposting an old Geocities blog story because someone brought it up on facebook. It’s not really travel related, unless you’re coming to Los Angeles to be on a gameshow, but it’s a good story.  I have the episode on videotape somewhere.

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I was a contestant on “Win Ben Stein’s Money”.

I won some (although not all) of Ben Stein’s Money!

Here is the recounting of my game show experience:

I’ve never been on a game show before, or even tried out for one.  I grew up watching gameshows, first the daytime ones with my grandmothers (The Price Is Right, Truth or Consequences and Jeopardy) and then afternoon (Match Game) and evening ones (Beat The Clock, The Joker’s Wild, Hollywood Squares, Name That Tune and the new Jeopardy) as I grew up.

I’ve been a fan of Ben Stein’s since before his appearance in “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” and often read his articles in Penthouse while I was growing up (yes I read the articles).  So when Comedy Central gave him a game show with “Jimmy The Sports Guy from KROQ” as his sidekick I had to watch.

In case you’ve never seen the show, it’s a “hip Jeopardy for the gen-x generation” although it appeals to intellectual types of all sexes, races and ages.  Ben Stein is the host and Jimmy Kimmel is the sidekick and co-host.  The show is broken down into three rounds: the first, three contestants compete to answer questions, the player with the lowest score at the end of the round is eliminated; the second, two contestants and Ben Stein (who now becomes a player) compete and the player with the lowest score is eliminated; and the third and final round is the “BEST OF TEN TEST OF KNOWLEDGE” where the remaining contestant competes against Ben, both are asked the same ten questions and the highest score wins.  If the player beats Ben he wins $5000.

So the procedure for getting on the show:

1. visit http://www.futility.com and get the number to call to be a contestant.

2. Call and leave your info on the hotline.

3. Wait a while.

4. Be ready because they’ll call when you least expect it and give you a ten question quiz (and it’s not easy) on the phone.

5. If you pass the phone quiz you’ll be invited down to KTLA and there you’ll be given a thirty question written test.

6. Then they’ll explain the procedure for you and if you pass the written test, you get to stay and audition for the game by playing in front of the contestant reviewers.

7. Wait a while.

8. If you’re right for the show, they’ll call you and let you know that you’ve made the “contestant pool” and you’ll be asked to tape sometime in the near future.

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9. Wait a while.

10. Eventually they’ll call you with a taping date and send you a contestant information packet in the mail.

11. Wait a  while.

12. When your taping date arrives they ask you to arrive at KTLA at 11:15am and be prepared to go until 7pm because they tape three or four shows a day when they tape.

I arrived at 11:15 on my taping day (after having to reschedule once and then being rescheduled once because Jimmy had decided to leave the show) and we waited until a little after 11:30 on the curb at the guardshack to walk to the stage.  We were taken upstairs to the green room and filled out paperwork (rules, waiver, release and W-2).  They reviewed the rules with us and explained the procedure for the game (including the rules in case of a tie or a technical problem).  The we sat and waited.

They came in a picked the first three to play and the rest of us waited and watched the game on closed circuit tv.  They were taping four shows on my taping day so there were thirteen people and the contestant coordinators in close quarters for a while.  The first three contestants taped the first show.  When they came to pick the next three, they picked me to play against a guy about my age and an older woman

We were miked with radio microphones, the contestant wrangler walked us down to the set, the audience was loaded in from the first taping, and the stage manager gave us instructions.  We got to test the buzzers and then we waited for Ben to come down to the set.  When he arrived he greeted us, his competitors and wished us luck.  Because of Jimmy’s sudden departure from the show, they have a new co-host/sidekick a sexy and funny woman named Nancy…but she was still learning the game and the workings of the show (it was only her third day!) so it was a little rough.  She reviewed our intros and we were ready to go.

Nancy Pimental and Ben Stein

Nancy Pimental and Ben Stein

I did well in the first round and was in the lead when it ended.  In the second round Ben smoked both me and the older woman, but because I was in the lead I won and got to face Ben in the final round.  I let Ben go first and he scored a four.  The ten questions were hard.  But I too scored a four and tied Ben!

During the second and third round I had a nice conversation with Ben about his writing and the show.  After I tied him, Ben congratulated me and thanked me for wishing him good luck (he told me that it was “very sportsmanlike”).

The show will air next season, sometime after April.  I get paid 120 days after it airs…so I’ll see the money next summer.

All in all I had a great time!  I spent about eight hours total between the audition and the taping, met Ben Stein, made it to the final round and went head-to-head with him, tied him and won some of his money!  Not bad for a day’s work!

Bueller?  Bueller?  Bueller?

Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?

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They gave all the contestants a t-shirt and I got to keep my question and answer card
(the scribbles are Nancy Pimental’s notes for asking the questions):

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