It’s hard to go wrong with practical and sentimental picks for the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby. Keeneland’s Bill Thomason made both today. In his first appearance before Lexington Rotarians as the track’s president, Thomason said his head goes with the morning-line favorite ‘Orb,’ but his heart favors ‘Charming Kitten.’
“And I did it for completely sentimental reasons for Ken Ramsey who is such a fabulous ambassador for racing. He’s on a storybook ride this year with all of the races that he’s won and the way that he’s enjoyed himself and brought his whole family in it. I’m just so much in his corner and wish him so much the best that I hope Ken runs well in the Derby,” said Thomason.
Ramsey’s horses have fared well at Thomason’s track….breaking a record this spring for the most wins by a single owner.
Thomason also talked about his track’s connection and commitment to the horse industry.
“We’re committed to bring young people into the sport. We’re committed to strengthening the breeding community across the country and across the world. We gonna do everything we can possible do to keep attaching this American public and showing them that we have a sport that’s relevant to the modern sports fan and keep them engaged in horse racing,” added Thomason.
Ten three-year-olds entered in Saturday’s Derby were sold at Keeneland. They include multiple graded stakes winners Verrazano, Overanalyze and Revolutionary.