The gang's all here, well, most of the gang anyway. Horse vans are rolling in and out of the stable area at Keeneland Race Course, particularly in the barns off Rice Road, as the countdown to the Breeders' Cup World Championships continues.
Activity picked up considerable in the barns and on the racetrack Monday morning, a stark contrast to a week earlier when the majority of the horses training were locals or others running in the final days of the Keeneland fall meet. Horses with the purple Breeders' Cup saddle towels were out in force this Monday and even more are expected.
Rain - most likely a lot of rain - is also expected Tuesday and Wednesday, some estimates reaching into the five-inch range. Now that's a serious amount of the wet stuff. The rest of the long-range forecast looks good for Friday and Saturday, but this is Kentucky, where the weather can change on a dime.
We can't do anything about the weather, but we can serve up an edition of Here & There, Breeders' Cup style. Enjoy.
"I'm good at begging."
Old Friends' Michael Blowen talking about fundraising
"Running. Hearing about all that running makes me sick."
Robbie Medina, assistant to trainer Shug McGaughey, after TIHR's Tom Law told him about last week's Bourbon Chase
"One for the old school."
Trainer Andrew McKeever after being congratulated for winning Thursday's allowance feature at Keeneland with Werewolf
"You're late to the party."
Todd Pletcher to TIHR's Tom Law at the end of a impromptu press conference outside his barn last week
"It's just what you need, to get kicked."
Guadalupe Preciado to fellow trainer Greg Burchell as an anxious filly walked the shedrow near their stalls on Rice Road. Earlier in the morning Burchell announced that Sticksstatelydude wouldn't be entered in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile
"I ain't been kicked since '78."
"No moss grows on this side for sure."
Trainer Brian Lynch, discussing the hectic last few days of moving barns
"I told him I'd take care of the horses, you take care of the people."
Exercise rider and assistant Heather Smullen in Ralph Nicks' tack room Monday morning
By the Numbers
1: Traffic cone stuck under Lexington Herald-Leader Turf writer Alicia Wincze-Hughes' car in Rice Road barn area Monday morning.
2: Turf writers it took to get it free - TIHR's Tom Law and The Blood-Horse's Frank Angst.
3: Trainers tied for the top spot at the recently concluded Keeneland fall meeting.
10: Breeders' Cup saddle towels hanging outside Todd Pletcher's shedrow Monday morning.
25: Wins for leading rider Corey Lanerie at Keeneland meet.
14,159: Average daily attendance during Keeneland meet.