Sunday, May 22, 2011

Preakness 136 Epilogue

As I sit in my living room - watching Sox-Cubs - on Sunday night, I thought I'd provide some passing thoughts on my first and likely only Preakness experience.

  • First, hats off to my wife - of now 14 years - for agreeing to go to the Preakness to celebrate our wedding anniversary. C'mon it doesn't get better than that! 
  • Upon being shuttled into Pimlico, I  was reminded of coming into Atlanta in 1996 to see the Olympic Track and Field Trials some 15 years ago. In both cases, I was among mostly white patrons/fans being transported through poor, primarily African American neighborhoods to sit for an event before being bused out again. There was no Siro's, Cask N' Flagon (an old Fenway haunt) or any tavern, restaurant or place that 102,000 fans were going to stop and patronize on Saturday night.
  • Our third floor grandstand seats were excellent. We sat just a hundred yards from the finish line and directly up from where Dialed In, Mucho Macho Man and Animal Kingdom were saddled up for the Preakness. My wife, our cousins and I also occupied seats 8-11 and 9, 10, and 11 also belonged to the three horses mentioned above. I thought with karma like that, some combination of a  9-10-11 finish was in the cards, so I played a $5 trifecta box with those numbers. 
  • I took a beating most of the day, while the Mrs. hit a few modest exactas. I was alive with Animal Kingdom in a Pick 4, threw down $50 on him to win and had him in several other superfecta and trifectas. My best score on the day was mistakenly betting $5 to win on Shackleford
  • The A/C was modest inside the grandstand and getting outside was almost impossible, due to over zealous ushers. (Every seat location was color-coded and if you had the wrong code you were quickly sent away.) If you are willing to take a chance and attend yourself, try the outside grandstand seats, as I felt these seats gave the best view, were shaded most of the day and even offered some protection if it were to rain.
  • It was good to meet some of my blogger friends - Geno from Equispace and Steve from WirePlayers - in person. Just as personable and knowledgeable in the flesh as they are in cyberspace. An interesting and diverse community, we, Thoroughbred bloggers are. 
  • Thanks also to mom for sending some much needed wagering funds our way for an anniversary gift, ensuring that we could wager to our hearts content. 
  • Below are some pictures from the Preakness...
 The starting gate during the undercard
 Not a cupcake top, but one of the many decorative hats
 Here I am trying to find the Bruins game in an unoccupied horseman's box in front of our seats.
 Our view of Animal Kingdom saddling up.
 Astrology walks by...
Shackleford before he heated up and won...
Animal Kingdom walks by...
 Me and the Mrs...
Animal Kingdom getting a much needed bath afterwards. 
Shackleford walks off his Preakness win before entering the winner's circle.


  1. Looks like you guys had a good time! :-)

  2. Tony, great to meet you, enjoyed the pictures above! See ya at the Spa!


  3. A big win in the fun department, if not in cashing tickets. Good times...onto Belmont, Spa and Del Mar....

  4. Looks like you had awesome seats and a great time!