Author Archive: John Asher
The growth of the Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill Downs has been a wonderful thing to experience since the stature of Churchill Downs’ mid-year race for older horses started to rise in the 1990s.
Another Triple Crown campaign has come and gone and our streak without a horse that could sweep the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes stands at 35 years.
No Triple Crown will be at stake when Orb, winner of the 139th Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands, and Oxbow, the front-running victor in the Preakness, meet a close-to-full gate of rivals in Saturday’s Belmont Stakes.
By the time a period is added to the final sentence of this piece and the time it meets your eyes, four major players in the Belmont Stakes will probably have worked at Churchill Downs in preparation for the final jewel of the 2014 Triple Crown.
As the realization of a lifelong dream unfolded before him on a soggy first Saturday in May at Churchill Downs, Claude Ray “Shug” McGaughey was not watching from a warm and cozy spot on Millionaires Row, over even one of the Churchill Downs boxes in Section 318 where the connections of Kentucky Derby runners spend some of the most anxious two-minute increments of their lives.