As of Tuesday afternoon, Brooklyn Backstretch is officially a member of the Thoroughbred Bloggers Alliance. You’ll see the other members on the blogroll to the left, and I’m happy to say that a condition of membership is an annual donation to Old Friends. Happy to pay that price of admission, and happy to be a part of this group, many of whose names will be familiar to you.
As noted in the previous post and on the blog for the Virginia Gold Cup (and in numerous other places as well), Tuesday’s Oprah show featured an appearance by Oprah Winney, entered in the Filly and Mare Sprint on Friday, morning line odds of 6-1 (considerably less than those mentioned in the segment). As I noted in a comment on Alan’s Breeders’ Cup blog and as Post Parade discussed today, one might have thought that this offered an invaluable opportunity for some pre-BC buzz that might get Oprah’s zillions of viewers interested in watching the races this weekend. Disappointing; while it was a nice segment on the filly, the BC got little play, and I doubt that anyone not previously interested will be searching for coverage on Saturday.
One of the charities near and dear to my heart is the Belmont Child Care Association, on the backstretch at Belmont; it’s open 5 am – 1 pm every day of the year and offers very low-cost child care, for infants to five-year-olds, to the children of the backstretch workers. It’s a wonderful place; I’ve visited several times (playing in the Lael Stables playroom and on the Lemon Drop Kid playground–guess who are major donors?) and worked on their fundraiser in Saratoga this past August. One of Oprah Winney’s owners is Michael Dubb, the chairman of the board at the BCCA and one of the driving forces behind its creation. As mentioned in the Oprah segment, a percentage of the filly’s winnings will be donated to charity, and I was thrilled to receive an e-mail from the BCCA confirming that 10% of her winnings will go to the children of Anna House. Knowing that, it will be hard to root against her.
I know that I’m supposed to be regaling all of you with hardcore analysis of the Breeders’ Cup races, but really, what could I offer that smarter, far more well-informed writers aren’t already offering? I’m going to leave the race analysis to the professionals, but before Friday I’ll post a list of whom I want to win—not who I think will win, not who should win based on past performances and track biases and pedigree and speed figures, but whom I would like to win, for a variety of idiosyncratic reasons. Betcha can’t wait, eh?
Aqueduct opens tomorrow. I don’t care what the thermostat says; winter’s here.