Funny Cide Marketing Boom Rocks Upstate New York

Forget about the number of memorabilia items that can be purchased on the Funny Cide web site, the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner will have his name on a number of products from Saratoga to Syracuse and Rochester.

According to Sackatoga Stable managing partner Jack Knowlton, there is now Funny Cide lite beer, brewed at Old Saratoga Brewery in Saratoga, that has become an instant hit; Funny Cide label wines; Funny Cide donuts at the Dunkin Donuts in Saratoga; Funny Cide ice cream and chocolate mints, and a soon-to-be released Funny Cide hot sauce.

"We wanted to do things around Funny Cide that people can have some fun with," Knowlton said on a national teleconference Tuesday. "People want to attach just about everything to his name. The lite beer is being distributed to some 300 food stores in upstate New York, and they'll be shipping some down to Monmouth on Haskell Day. So far, everyone seems to like it.

"People really enjoy being connected to the horse, and it keeps Funny Cide in everyone's eyes. We have no plans to make any rapid expansion outside of New York, but if it becomes popular, it might identify with some outside markets. We're working with a New York City agency that will pick up the ball, and once it is finalized they'll probably take it to a level we're not prepared to."