KENTUCKY DERBY THOUGHTS: MONDAY
We're finally here after a good number of years. We're waiting for a final word from B. Wayne Hughes that he's not going to run Mister Triester.
A million things go through my mind.
One of my first thoughts is of my old man, who I drove with all night from Levittown, Pa. to Louisville the Friday before the Derby in 1978 to see Affirmed get the job done in the Derby. I'd give anything to have him with our group next Saturday. Maybe he'll give us a little help at the quarter pole with Bull if we're good enough.
We've had so many horses. Some were just not as good as we thought. Some were good but unsound. Some were good but unlucky. The funnel filters them out pretty quickly in this game. The attrition rates are absolutely staggering.
Boy, this ride with Flashy Bull sure has made me forget about most of the other less successful ones we've had.
It will be a busy week. Over 100 people are traveling to join the West Point parade. My kids are coming out on Thursday. Erin's going away to college in September. We'll have a chance to walk over as a family. It's a dream we've thought about for a long time.
Congie's traveling to Kentucky with his mother Roberta for his first Derby.
I can't help but think about the 40,000 foals born in the spring of 2003. Most everyone said when they were born. "This is the the one to get me to the derby." Here we are one of the final 20.
We have some new partners and some long-time partners in Flashy Bull. One of the first West Point partners was John Leonard and his Marchfore boys. They've stepped up for many years with limited success. I can't wait for all of us to look up at the twin spires on Derby Day and realize we are at the big dance.
John McMahon is another long time guy. He's flying in on Derby morning from Florida,
I realize now that the big part of West Point's growth has been with people like this, and so many others, who step up, year after year.
I think we have a chance to win it. How many times do you have to make real history? This is the big dance, and we're in the dance contest.
The horse is a hard-trying grinder. We want a killer pace with all the stars scrambling up front. We want to pick up the pieces at the quarter pole if we're good enough.