Giving my record at Churchill Downs I’m not the one you want breaking down the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby this Saturday but I wouldn’t bet against Goldencents. Louisville head basketball coach Rick Pitino is a 5% owner and with the roll that he is on I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets an unusual Triple Crown of his own; a National Championship, a Hall of Fame Induction and winning the Run For the Roses. Goldencents earned his spot in the Derby field by winning the Santa Anita Derby after overcoming adversities similar to the way Pitino’s Cardinals did later that night in their Final Four victory against Wichita State.
His 5-1 odds make Goldencents the 3rd favorite behind Orb and Verrazano but considering how the clouds and rain cleared for him during his first jog after arriving at Churchill, everything seems to be going their way. Twenty minutes later it was pouring. Fate or maybe destiny? I don’t know but the only thing missing is a start from the 5th gate, Kevin Ware jersey number. Instead he will be starting from the 8th gate. (Siva did wear number 3 so add Wares 5 and you get 8, just sayin.)
Its been an impressive turn around for Pitino considering he was contemplating retirement following a public scandal and a 1st round exit in the NCAA tourney just a couple years ago. He overcame these adversities just to make back-to-back Final Fours with a National Championship and a Hall of Fame induction. Goldencents could add a Kentucky Derby victory to this list as well.
Louisville capped off their championship celebration as the men’s and national runner-up women’s basketball teams served as Grand Marshalls for the Pegasus Parade, a part of the two weeks of festivities leading up to the Derby. You could call it a Triple Crown celebration; first it was a celebration in front of 20,000+ at the KFC Yum Center the Wednesday following the NC games, next was the half time salute and autograph sessions during the spring football game with over 30,000 fans and now finally the Pegasus Parade.