"Six Weeks in Saratoga" available! Go get it!

"Six Weeks in Saratoga: How Three-Year-Old Rachel Alexandra Beat the Boys and Became Horse of the Year" published July 1, 2011. Keep it locked here, at The Carryover or go to SUNY Press to order your copy ... right now! Or head on down to your favorite bookseller.

Praise for "Six Weeks in Saratoga"

“Going behind the scenes of three-year-old filly Rachel Alexandra’s 2009 triumph … O’Meara makes her story gallop and gleam.” — Chronogram

“The [book] is one of enjoyable promise, and as the author recounts little moments and inside conversations, he provides an intimate glimpse into the lives of the figures he covers. The narrative keeps game pace with outside literary standards and features bursts of brilliance, and I found it a refreshing change from the selection of racing-themed volumes available today. As O’Meara brings his subjects to life, you find yourself thinking this is the kind of guy whose work I want to follow.” — Claire Novak, ESPN.com

“O’Meara … provide[s] a tremendous amount of detail from behind the scenes that the reader would not have otherwise enjoyed … Six Weeks is essentially a Rachel book, but it’s told without neglecting the always rich backdrop of a Saratoga meet. That means there’s history, surprises, characters (human and equine), great racing, foggy mornings and sun-splashed afternoons—plenty of material through which O’Meara could exercise his descriptive abilities.” — Schenectady Daily Gazette

“O’Meara fell for a magical place and magnificent horse, which is a lovely malady that often befalls horse people, and with a great deal of heart he tells us how and why. You’ll never forget his Six Weeks in Saratoga, either.” — Joe Drape, author of Our Boys: A Perfect Season on the Plains with the Smith Center Redmen

“Brendan O’Meara tells the story of this proud horse with verve and great historical insight. Six Weeks in Saratoga marks the debut of an exciting new talent.” — Wil Haygood, author of Sweet Thunder: The Life and Times of Sugar Ray Robinson

“Brendan O’Meara’s Six Weeks in Saratoga is a victory to be savored by those who treasure good writing in general and tales of the track in particular. Horses may win races, but they also win hearts as this impressive book proves beyond doubt. A memorable, sure-footed debut.” — Madeleine Blais, author of In These Girls, Hope Is a Muscle

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Kentucky Derby Live Blogging

Heeeere we go again, people.  Live blogging yet again from Churchill. 

This is the big one, the big julep.  Should this day go well, I will bathe myself in bourbon.  Should this day follow suit with every other day, I'll drink that bourbon.

Good Ol' Pete and I have put the ABC on a treadmill, the steambox and fed it Hydroxycut and the results are amazing.  The videos are trimmer, shorter and possess an unrivaled sex appeal.  Check out the new videos for Oaks Day Recap and Kentucky Derby Preview.  Or don't.  Jerks.

11:19 ... All insults aside, it's nice to see my dirty turf writer colleagues actually dressed up for a change.  I don't see one Hawaiian shirt and no traces of body odor.  I think many of them shaved as well.  It's like the prom all over again.

So you KNOW something special is going to happen.

11:24 ... If you tried to place your bets ahead of time and got a dirty look from your teller, it was because I Want Revenge scratched this morning and she's tired of telling people about it.

The morning line favorite as of Wednesday was scratched this morning after an undiagnosed problem was detected in his left front ankle by trainer Jeff Mullins.

Mullins begins a suspension tomorrow for bringing illegal substances into the security barn on the Wood Memorial undercard, not to mention the slew of infractions he has accrued over the years.

Any believers in karma need look no further than here.

11:43 ... Time to start gambling.  I'm getting cold sweats.

12:07 ... 50 cent Pick 4 just started.  I went wide since this was somewhat affordable.  I hit the first leg with 4-1 Glenwood Canyon.  He took the lead from Northern Prince at the top of the lane and drew away with an eighth to go.  

Next leg I've got two horses in Why Tonto and Mr Maccool.  Why Tonto, why anything?

12:10 ... it is a bummer that Revenge is out.  It would have been nice to see the 19-year-old jockey Joe Talamo get a shot here at roses. 

"Really, I'm at a loss for words," he said. "I'm just glad the horse is OK. It could have been a lot worse. Something could have happened on he track. I'm just glad it happened in the stall and I believe everyone did the right thing by the horse. He's the one who got us here, so you have to the right thing by him."

12:42 ... Dead.  Calvin Borel strikes again with 16-to-1 Jazz in the Park. Desert Wheat took second and Pick Six was third.  What does all this mean?  Losing never rests.

1:01 ... Friesan Fire is the 4-1 favorite right now five hours to post.  Funny, if you did an Oaks-Derby Daily Double with Rachel Alexandra and Friesan Fire, you would make less money than if you simply bet Friesan to win.  

1:25 ... Hit first leg of rebound-Pick 3 ticket with the mudlark Accredit.  Alive with Four Gifts and Auspicious.  Dead with hope and good cheer.

1:30 ... We need more votes for ABC feedback.  Call it insecurity, call it what you will, I call it research.  This survey extends beyond just the pilot, but also to our shorter clips.  Get used to the shorter clips.  They are easier on the eyes.  

We are working on a Fat Head of Jeannine Edwards.  Stay tuned.

1:42 ... I'd like to say hello to the most gracious employers I have ever had in the Fleet Feet crew at Adams Morgan, Washington D.C.  My flat arches have never felt better.  Overpronators unite. Hello to Shawn, Roger, Kim, Jan and Phil.  If I have left anyone off this hello, too bad.  

2:14 ... Great win for Four Gifts.  Great only because it kept me alive in a Pick 3 and gave Good Ol' Pete a $760 win.

2:34 ... Will pays for me are $111 or $375.  A more accurate term is Possibly Pays.  If I had to define it, it would be Never Pays.

That said, it's julep time.  See you soon.

3:13 ... Like I said, Never Pays.  

3:14 ... Pi entry ... The time between races is agonizingly long now.  Up next is the Humana Distaff.  Game Face should wins this.  

So, I've been alive heading into the last leg of my Pick 3's twice this weekend and they have all been flushed down the toilet like a goldfish.  

Tizaqueena ran a gutsy race in the Churchill Distaff Turf Mile.  She ran away from challengers the way my dates run for the exit.

3:37 ... I'm gonna go get my GAME FACE on.  Uh huh, that's right.  My face is ready for the game.  My face is going to be in the winner's circle.  

As I said yesterday, my hope is that I can at least get a whiff of success.  But, success is like a good perfume, you can only smell it from close up.  However, you can only smell it when the wearing allows you to be close.  

Hence my lingering stench of failure.

4:14 ... I hate this sport.

4:16 ... Seriously, I mean it.

4:20 ... I'm not taking it back.  

The problem is that losing never gets old even for the perpetual loser.  I mean this in a handicapping sense, but it is easy for this to bleed over into other facets of life, say, everything.

Is losing the opiate of losing?

4:59 ... Excuse me, please excuse me.  I'm in a terrible, terrible mood.  

Well, Einstein held off Cowboy Call in the Woodford Turf Reserve.  There was really never any doubt.  Sure, he was contested, but when a horse like Einstein locks eyes he is not going to lose.

That makes two Grade I wins on two different surfaces for this horse-of-all-trades — his other big win coming in the Grade I Santa Anita Handicap.

5:06 ... So we got our first "hated it" vote for ABC and I almost have to agree.  I need more feedback.  When 20 percent of all voters hate it, one has to listen.

5:14 ... Leanne Rimes just sang the National Anthem.  Frankly, the one she did when she was 9-years-old at Texas Stadium was better.  I have no basis for this.

6:53 ... So angry.  Mine That Bird won the most prestigious race in the world. 

7:03 ... Mine That Bird had nothing going for him.  Nothing.  His highest Beyer was an 81.  He had zero significant works.  His only graded earnings came in a third-place finish in the Grade III Grey at Woodbine as a 2-year-old.  

The only thing — and I mean only thing — he had going for him was that his sire is Birdstone.

7:07 ... This is your classic Taco Bell day.  I think I'll have a Grilled Stuft Burrito, hold the dignity.

7:08 ... So I watched this useless race in the winner's circle, and when Calvin Borel stormed up the rail, he pointed his whip right at me — and only me — as he shocked the world.  

Birdstone screwed us again.  First by spoiling Smarty Jones' bid at the  Triple Crown and now THIS.  

This is the end, this is the end of horse racing.

7:15 ... Well friends, we've had a lot of fun, ups and many downs.  Thanks for sticking with me.  We'll bring you the ABC Kentucky Derby recap tonight, sure to be filled with rage and tears.

So long!


Anonymous said...

I'm pairing Hold Me Back with Papa Clem in the climax - ask the HOT one what he thinks of that! His dam mare is going with 5-11-15 in a huge tri-box.

Brendan O'Meara said...

It looks like you're pairing a couple of losers which would give you a lot in common with both me and this supposed hot one.

Anonymous said...

Wow! HOT and rich... no wonder he wears Joseph Abboud suits. One would have to assume his co-host is spending too much binocular-time studying the fillies. Come on, win one for the RickSir.

Stan Hudy said...

I would announce on your blog that Pete and I will be taking over ABC after I correctly selected Mine That Bird as the Kentucky Derby winner!
Have fun covering Little League this summer!

jlein said...

Was there ever a time the GSB let you down? I'd put money on "no".