You’re going to need to know something about horse racing to survive social outings around here the next week and a half or so. I recommend keeping up with videos like this one, produced by Churchill Downs and featuring Jill Byrne, that chronicle the road to the Derby for the horses and their connections.
Names to know — American Pharaoh, Dortmund, Carpe Diem, International Star, Frosted, Itsaknockout. And be aware that if you think you’re talking politics at your next cocktail party, Far Right, at least this week, is a horse, not a philosophy. Materiality is a horse, not a bad personal trait. Upstart is a horse, not that new millennial they just hired in the office.
The star trainers are here, and you’ll be hearing plenty of quotes from Bob Baffert and Todd Pletcher from the barns on local newscasts. And there will be great stories about the crazy people who go into horse racing as owners, such as Jack Wolf, the Louisville native who will send out the longshot Itsaknockout.
So get ready, and start studying. Starting with this: