Trying to catch Calvin Borel for an interview during his last day of racing at Saratoga was like attempting to pin down a darting dragonfly, and the Cajun jockey looked the part in Bill Farish's brilliant green and yellow silks as he scurried back to the private courtyard behind the jockeys' room before the fourth race of the day.
By Dan Liebman - Thankfully, someone at the time did have an interest in standing Danzig, Storm Cat, and Mr. Prospector, respectively. And, our breed has been changed forever because of their decisions.
Though there are four more months left in the 2007 racing season, Street Sense's narrow victory in the Aug. 25 Travers Stakes (gr. I) is sure to provoke discussion of whether he has already done enough to sew up the 3-year-old championship.
The Travers blanket - red and white carnations, white "T" in the middle - hangs in front of Street Sense's stall at the barn of Carl Nafzger and Ian Wilkes. The bright colors are still vibrant, and Nafzger is still savoring the victory this morning
The canoe in the infield pond has been painted in James Tafel's colors of yellow and blue. Street Sense is safely recovering from his exertion. Another Travers is in the record books. Talk about feeling the air go out of the balloon
He was the favorite for a reason, and Saturday afternoon Street Sense proved he belongs at the top of the 3-year-old division when he turned back a determined Grasshopper after hooking up in a fierce duel at the head of the stretch in the 138th running of the Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course.
Carl Nafzger walks across Clare Court with Street Sense striding beside him. The colt is alert, but relaxed; he walks confidently, as if he owns the track. Once over the Clare Court training track, he stops and pricks his ears. Lifts his head. Looks for cameras. Definite pose.
Carl Nafzger says he does not worry about the competition going into a race, because you can only train one horse, and that's your horse. Were he concerned about a specific runner for Street Sense to beat in Saturday's running of the Travers (gr. I), however, it would be the Phipps Stable's Sightseeing, who is coming into the Aug. 25 race in what trainer Shug McGaughey terms the "best mental condition" this year.
While slightly difficult, it is entirely possible to come to Saratoga without watching a horse race. You can come, for instance, to enter the hot dog eating contest Ã¢â‚¬" and if you are like Crazy Legs Conti from New York City and can consume 21.5 hot dogs as he did yesterday, you can also win.
The general consensus is that the $1-million Travers Stakes (gr. I) will be a cake walk for Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) champion Street Sense. When the post positions were drawn Aug. 22 and the son of Street Cry was installed as a 3-5 morning line favorite, that line of thinking was confirmed.
Wednesday morning, the cameramen are in full swing at Saratoga. In the paddock, they cluster around for the Travers draw, tripods balanced like long-legged storks. In the winners' circle, they form an orderly line for Senator Bruno's conference on the fight against horse slaughter. Down near the rail, they lift cameras to shoulders and zoom in for local track reports.
Street Sense, winner of this year's Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), will start from post position number four in Saturday's running of the $1 million Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course.
Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) champion Street Sense turned in a five-furlong breeze over Saratoga's main track Aug. 21, his final work for the 138th running of the $1 million Travers Stakes (gr. I).
Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Street Sense galloped 1 1/8 miles over Saratoga's main track Aug. 20, and weather permitting, will perform a five-furlong work tomorrow in preparation for the 138th running of the $1 million Travers Stakes (gr. I) Aug. 25.
Curlin breezed for the first time in three weeks as well.
With one week remaining until the $1-million Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga Race Course, top trainers in New York are aiming for a single target in the stalwart form of Street Sense, who will head up the field of the Aug. 25 "midsummer Derby" with a solid bullseye on his back.
There was the rubber match between Street Sense and Curlin in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I). Didn't Happen. There was the showdown between the two in the Travers Stakes (gr. I). Not going to happen. There was Rags to Riches headlining Lady's Day at Belmont for the CCA Oaks (gr. I). Didn't Happen. There was Rags in the Saratoga limelight for the Alabama. Not going to happen.
Street Sense, winner of the May 5 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) and the July 29 Jim Dandy (gr. II), was back on the main track at Saratoga Race Course Aug. 15 at 7:30 a.m. for another workout.
Street Sense is back and so is Rags to Riches. All is once again right with the racing world. If Curlin emerges victorious from next week's Haskell Invitational Handicap (gr. I), then the Breeders' Cup World Championships will have the star power it so desperately needs.
Trainer Carl Nafzger will saddle Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Street Sense in the Jim Dandy (gr. II) July 29. The race will make his first start since finishing a neck behind Curlin in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I).
The Super Derby at Harrah's Louisiana Downs will double in value to $1 million if Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Street Sense, Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Curlin, or Belmont Stakes (gr. I) winner Rags to Riches participate in the Sept. 22 race.
Spend a perfect day at the Spa... There will be a few hours to lose at the Oklahoma training track, and you'll stand at the rail and breathe the pungent, pleasing odor of sweaty flanks and dew-stained grass, watching as horses and riders come lolloping over the freshly-turned dirt course.
Any number of horses -- Lava Man, Street Sense, Rags to Riches, Papi Chullo, Sun King, Any Given Saturday, and Curlin -- could fill the void left by the recent departures of some of racing's biggest stars.
The 2007 running of Monmouth Park's $1-million Haskell Invitational Presented by Vonage (gr. I) promises to be one of the best ever, with Preakness (gr. I) winner Curlin, Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) runner-up Hard Spun, and the undefeated Cable Boy heading the field.
James Tafel's Street Sense, winner of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), turned a few heads at Churchill Downs Thursday morning, breezing five furlongs in a bullet :57 2/5, in preparation for his return in either the Haskell Invitational Handicap (gr. I) or grade II Jim Dandy Stakes, the more likely spot of the two.
James Tafel's Street Sense, winner of the 2007 Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), continued to train toward his summer and fall campaign with a five furlong workout July 13 at Churchill Downs.
Jockey Calvin Borel was the recipient of this year's ESPY award for top jockey and received the award during a presentation ceremony at Hollywood's Kodak Theatre July 11, said the jockey's agent, Jerry Hissam.
The second season for 3-year-olds began on July 4, with the emphatic victory by Any Given Saturday in the Dwyer Stakes (gr. II), and judging from the works turned in by Curlin and Hard Spun on Monday, as well as Street Sense's work on Sunday, the heavy hitters from the Triple Crown are all primed and ready for their respective returns.
The winners of this spring's memorable first two Triple Crown races were in action at Churchill Downs July 1 as Street Sense, winner of the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), and Curlin, who edged the Derby winner to take a memorable renewal of the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), each worked five furlongs under the historic Twin Spires.
Calvin Borel, regular rider of Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Street Sense, and Robby Albarado, rider of Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Curlin, head up this year's list of nominees for ESPN's ESPY Awards in the top jockey category.
James Tafel's homebred Street Sense, winner of the 2007 Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), took a first step toward his summer and fall campaign with a solid four-furlong work on Sunday at Churchill Downs.
Jockey Calvin Borel and trainer Carl Nafzger, who teamed to win the 133rd running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) with champion Street Sense, will participate in a charity autograph session benefiting the Permanently Disabled Jockeys' Fund at Churchill Downs on Saturday.
All the superlatives and accolades have been written. The 139th Belmont Stakes (gr. I) and the performance of Rags to Riches will forever be a part of Triple Crown lore, and will go down as one of the sport's greatest moments. But it was not all about one horse. There is another who deserves near-equal billing for his remarkable accomplishments.
By Ray Paulick - What fans got this year were three incredible horse races that ended with three very accomplished and deserving winners, punctuated by the history-making performance of Rags to Riches, the first filly winner of the Belmont since Tanya in 1905.
Nationally-renowned equine artist Robert Clark will be painting live at the Kentucky Derby Museum at Churchill Downs on Saturday, June 16, as he works on a portrait of 2007 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense for the second annual Horsemen's Education Benefit.
The Equine Wellness Foundation will present a post-race "Happy Hour" following the June 16 Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I) in support of the Klein Family Learning Center and The Race for Education, the Kentucky Derby Museum announced June 7.
As post positions were drawn Wednesday for Saturday's Belmont Stakes (gr. I), the field finally settled in at seven runners after a few horsemen decided that the Belmont would be, then wouldn't be, a fine race in which to run their horses.