Travis Stone

Today I got the thrill of listening to my friend Travis Stone call the Kentucky Derby.  Pretty cool to see someone I’ve been privileged to call a friend get a chance to shine on the biggest stage and knock it out of the park. He sounded like he’d been calling the race for 20 years.  He’s worked his butt off to become an elite announcer and each opportunity he’s been given he’s risen above expectations (IMO) and i’m just tickled that he nailed the Derby call.  I always joke that he’s had to carry the banner for the 2006 Announcer Pledge class and he’s done the class pretty proud.  I think i’m the only other member of the class and I’ve certainly held us back if anything :)

I always say I like when good things happen to good people.   And Travis is legit good people.  Couldn’t be happier for my friend.

“Oh I’m gonna mess this up, this is just my luck.  Over and over and over again.  I’m sorry for everything for everything I’ve done.  From the second that I was born it seems I”ve had a loaded gun.  Then I shot, shot, shot a hole through everything I loved.  Oh I shot, shot, shot a hole through every single thing that I love”–Dan Reynolds

 

How I Handicap the Derby; mostly by the names

Last year I picked my first Derby winner!  And I did it by handicapping based on names, personal geographic preferences and stuff like that.  Here’s that story http://jasonbeem.com/2014/05/02/kentucky-derby-preview/

So I thought I’d do the same this year.  So here is the only analysis you’ll need, straight from the mind of the weirdest handicapper around.  Going in order of Derby points.

International Star–So he’s not really International as he was born in NY, but he did win a race in Canada, and we all know how international a city that is 90 miles from Buffalo is.  I can’t decide if the image of Ken Ramsey with a smile two feet wide leading in his horse to the Derby winner’s circle is a positive or negative, so I’ll pass for now.

Dortmund–He’s named after a soccer team which is reason enough to completely toss him.  Soccer = Socialism.  And racing is all about capitalism.

Carpe Diem–If I have to read another “Seize the Day” pun about this horse I might puke.  I told my friend Travis Stone if he says “Seizes the Derby” if this horse wins then i’m unfriending him on Facebook.  But he’s trained by the Toddster who is uber dreamy, so he deserves a look.

American Pharoah–I personally like the name spelled wrong.  It’s like Quentin Tarantino spelling Inglourious Basterds with both words spelled wrong just because he it added some artistic cache.  And when I think artist I think Ahmed Zayat. Anyone who can orchestrate 137k twitter followers when nobody else in the sport has more than 30k is an artist.  The Chalk and should be.

Frosted–Every year I chuck the Wood Memorial winner and/or participants so he’s out.  Honestly the only thing I associate the word frosted with is “frosted tips” like boybands had for hairdos, another reason to toss.

Nobody should root for frosted tips

Nobody should root for frosted tips

Mubtaahij–My number one angle for handicapping Dubai races over the years has been pick horses whose names end in B,Q, or J.  This guy meets that criteria and if you love weiner puns you’ll love trainer Mike de Kock.  A must use!

Materiality–I believe in the curse of Apollo.  Look at all the bad things that have happened to ‘Apollos’.  Apollo Creed was killed by a juiced up Russian.  Apollo 13, blew the hell up in outer space.  Apollo Ohno, had that horrific soul patch.  The curse is real!

Apollo Creed, killed by a Russian.  #CurseOfApollo

Apollo Creed, killed by a Russian. #CurseOfApollo

El Kabeir--New York prep horse, toss him.  El Kabeir is actually spanish for ‘The Kabeir”

Upstart–I kind of don’t have anything funny to say about his name, well cause it kinda sucks for a horse name.  So he’s out.

Far Right–Now I don’t consider myself a very political person, but I know that the Far Right are embraced in Kentucky.  I mean he’s home, he’s around his people.  However the Derby can attract a very diverse crowd, which they don’t like, so i’m thinking he’ll be too annoyed to perform well.

Itsaknockout–Beaten by 21 lengths is a bit of a turn off. But the biggest fight of the last decade is Derby night so maybe there’s a hunch play there?  That being said, Mayweather isn’t a knockout guy and he’ll likely just beat Pacquio on points.  So no knockout.

Firing Line–Firing Lines are making a comeback.  Utah just last month remade it available to get killed that way.  What’s old is new again.  Give this guy a shot! #Heyooooo

Danzig Moon--I know Danzig is a good breeding line, but to me that name will always be synonymous with the man below.  And he rules.  So this horse gets a look from me.

War Story–This horse will be an underlay because Loooooch will buy $800,000 worth of tickets on the horse and say he’s going to give them all out to his twitter followers.  Then he’ll try and challenge Ken Ramsey to a bet and Ramsey’s horse will beat him again.  Autotoss on principle.

Tencendur–This horse sounds like the name of weird hybrid horse/cat from a nerd movie like Lord of the Rings or something.  “Quick, someone tell Tencendur that we’ve come upon the Molnink Village and we have to find Smingledore”  Nerds.

Stanford–I went to U of Washington so I would chuck any horse named after a Pac 12 school not named Huskies.  Well maybe Wazzu.

Mr. Z--I tend to root against any horse named after it’s owner.  That’s almost worse than naming your kid your name with a Jr.  What kind of ego does it take to saddle your kid with your name and all that comes with it?  Good lord let them carve their own niche you megalomaniac.  Ok, back to Mr. Z.  He’s not gonna win.

Ocho Ocho Ocho–Why would you bet a horse whose name tells you not once, not twice, but three times where he’s gonna finish.  8th.

Bolo–To me this sounds like the name of a Vegas night club geared towards country folks.  I don’t like clubs and a Bolo is a terrible fashion accessory.  Toss

Keen Ice–This sounds like a 1950’s desert from the neighborhood soda fountain.  “Hey Mr. Roberts, can I have one of those Keen Ice’s.”  “You betcha Billy, that’ll be five cents!’  “Gee thanks Mr. Roberts, this Ice sure is Keen!”

Frammento–I had a venti sized Frammento just the other day at Starbucks and it gave me a panic attack so I just can’t endorse this horse.