My friend and regular Spectator reader Jay Swiatek, who loves following the Sport of Kings, is out with his annual Kentucky Derby predictions. He studies these things. Then he assigns personalities to the ponies, using some sort of cracked anthropomorphizing psychologizing. I don’t get it, but sometimes it means he’s right. So, if you are betting, here’s Mr. Swiatek going all Che Guevera over a horse called “Revolutionary”:
REVOLUTIONARY: What to say about this sparkling son of War Pass? He is a race horse: one of
the most magnificent creatures in the good Lord’s creation. Tough. Quick. Commanding. Just
a bit wacky. Above all, versatile: can set the pace the whole route or hang poised back of the
pack, snake along the rail, then blast through a wall down the stretch. Push the button, watch
him go! High, low, wide—this horse would dig a tunnel around the oval if that’s what it took to
reach the wire first. Win he will, in a divine performance.
As for me, I read about these horses for about a week. I am overly affected by the horse’s names. And I am unduly impressed by my record of picking the Derby winner three years in a row, including two long-ish shots… and I try to ignore the fact that that run of success was nearly a decade ago and that my more recent record in Kentucky is somewhat worse than, well, the political launch success rate of Ashley Judd.
Despite all that, let me note confidently that the real likelihood of victory by the favorite Verrazano narrows (pun intended) with every passing hour, and that I further fear an unfortunate Oxbow incident on the back stretch.
Instead, the winner, just as in 1066, will be Normandy Invasion. And if you want an exacta, it’s actually a good thing to Overanalyze.
You heard it here first. Or maybe you heard it here worst. Either way, enjoy your mint juleps.