This is a post for everyone (like us) who tunes into horse racing just once a year, on the first Saturday in May when the Kentucky Derby is run. Here are three horses that those who pay much closer attention say you should know about:
-- Goldencents. Andrew Beyer of The Washington Post is the nation's best-known horse racing writer and he's "betting on Goldencents." According to Beyer, the colt's "most recent speed figure towers over his rivals' and [his] running style ought to give him a significant tactical advantage." This morning, Goldencents was a 5-1 choice to win (you can see the horses' odds, which are likely to change, here).
-- Orb. The Daily Racing Form says that during workouts this week, Orb has "looked very happy ... and has given every indication he's taken readily to the Churchill Downs surface, with a series of eye-catching gallops." His odds of winning as of this morning: 7-2.
-- Normandy Invasion. The colt is one of Beyer's "serious contenders." And he's also, according to The Louisville Courier-Journal, become a "rallying point for WWII veterans." So if you like sentimental favorites, he may be your horse. His odds are a little long, though: 12-1 as of this morning.
Another horse, Verrazano, was getting 4-1 odds to win this morning. But Beyer says he's "prepared to take a stand against Todd Pletcher's undefeated colt." Verrazano's recent performances, according to Beyer, have turned what looked to be "a budding superstar earlier in the winter" into a horse that "appears to be on the downgrade."
Our friends at Louisville's WFPL, by the way, have collected their Derby coverage here. Later today, the station's Gabe Bullard is due to have a report on All Things Considered about Kevin Krigger, who's set to become the first African-American jockey in more than a decade to ride in the Derby (aboard Goldencents), and Rosie Napravnik. She riding Mylute (15-1 odds) in the race.
The Code Switch blog is planning to post highlights from Gabe's report.
Post time for the Kentucky Derby is 6:24 p.m. ET (NBC-TV's coverage begins at 4 p.m. ET).
And though it's getting late to plan one, Kitchen Window has advice on "how to throw a Kentucky Derby party."