The Saturday Special – April 8

Here we go. The second weekend of April, time for the Master’s, opening weekend at Keeneland, Easter Sunday, baseball in full swing and buds on the trees. Some say it’s the best time of the year. Hard to argue, considering the slate of racing action across the country Saturday. Kentucky Derby preps galore with the … Read more

The Saturday Special – April 1

Happy April Fool’s Day. Or as we prefer to say, Happy Birthday Joe. Our man Joe Clancy turns, well, we’ll leave that for another day or let him tell you. Either way, it’s April 1 and the start of the second quarter of 2023. With the start of April comes crunch time on the Derby … Read more

The Saturday Special – March 25

Spring is here and we couldn’t be more thankful. The first full week of the new season packs a big punch, with the start of the National Steeplechase Association season, Dubai World Cup, Louisiana Derby Day, Jeff Ruby Steaks, New York Claiming Championship and so much more on tap. We’ve got it all and more … Read more

Cheltenham Day Four. The Gold Cup.

The curtain falls on the Cheltenham Festival. Four days. Twenty-eight races. A million moments. Highs and lows. Upsets and certainties. Stars and scars. Dreams achieved. Dreams shattered. Pints downed. Kings crowned. As always, it’s delivered. The perfect goodbye from Honeysuckle. The return of Envoi Allen. The subtle brilliance of Rachael. The domination by Willie. The … Read more

Cheltenham. Day Three.

Two down, two to go. Halftime at Cheltenham. Stars firmly in the sky. Stars still to come. On Wednesday…Impairre Et Paisse toyed with rivals in the Ballymore. Sam Twiston-Davies engineered a gem from The Real Whacker to hold off Gerri Colombe in the Brown Advisory. The plotted-up Langer Dan won a three-horse photo in the … Read more

Cheltenham. Day Two

Constitution Hill. Honeysuckle. A meteor in full flight. A star with her last swing. Hello, champion. Goodbye, champion. Two races. Two legends. One day. One hour. Cheltenham, the sport, at its breathtaking best. That was yesterday, a day that will live forever in pubs and parishes. As for today… Race 1. 9:30. The Ballymore Novices’ … Read more

Cheltenham. Day One.

I’m not there. OK. I said it. I have accepted it. Life’s challenges are still challenging us, so Cheltenham has been shelved for the third consecutive year. I was proud of my first streak, 2002-2015 and then another, 2017-2020. Yes, I made it four months after Miles was born, I made it the Covid year … Read more

The Saturday Special – Feb. 18

The countdowns are on in earnest as we rolled past the midpoint of February and enjoyed a slightly concerning stretch of extremely mild weather here in the Northeast. Which countdowns you ask? How about the start of the American steeplechase season, just five weeks from Saturday. What about the Kentucky Derby? That’s only 11 weeks … Read more

Thank you, Mr. Kelly

Veteran trainer Pat Kelly announced his retirement this week. The backstretch won’t be the same. Here’s one of my favorite Cups of Coffee, Cans and Carrots, written July 29, 2016. Pat Kelly parked his bike, a spray-painted, no-brand beater with a fading Free John Veitch bumper stick, a trash bag on the seat, a brass … Read more

The Saturday Special – Feb. 4

Weekends like this are made for sojourns to all points south, fireplaces or at the very lease hunkering down on the couch with a warm beverage and an even warmer blanket. Welcome to the deep freeze edition of The Saturday Special, a week removed from the Pegasus Day edition when temps were in the mid-70s … Read more