If only Maximum Security could be granted some Mr. Ed-like powers of speech, just so we could hear him tell his owner to chill out already.
Hey, Gary West’s initial disappointment — even devastation — was understandable. The disqualification of his horse, which crossed the wire first at the Kentucky Derby only to be taken off the board for impeding the progress of other horses, was unprecedented and controversial.
But at some point, don’t you have to get over it?
First West blasted the stewards for their decision on horse racing’s biggest day. Then he pulled Maximum Security out of the Preakness. Then he filed an appeal to the Kentucky Horse Race Commission, which was denied. Then he filed a lawsuit in federal court, saying the disqualification process was “unconstitutional.”
Sheesh. Even New Orleans Saints fans look at this guy and say, “Hey, brother, sometimes life ain’t fair.”
West’s latest attention-seeking move was to release a statement on Friday, challenging four other Kentucky Derby horses to a high-stakes rematch of sorts.
“Most experts agree that Maximum Security was the best horse in the Kentucky Derby,” West said. “I don’t care to discuss the controversy surrounding the events of the race and the disqualification of my horse at this time, but I firmly believe I have the best 3-year-old in the country and I’m willing to put my money where my mouth is.”
He’s offering $5 million apiece to the owners of Country House (the Kentucky Derby winner), War of Will, Long Range Toddy and Bodexpress if any of their horses finishes ahead of Maximum Security in a race before Jan. 1, 2020.
The catch? Those owners would have to risk their own $5 million apiece, too.
Don’t get me wrong. I’d totally tune in for this. If all five horses appeared in the same race, it would create the biggest prize pool in the sport’s history. West would stand to lose $20 million if Maximum Security somehow flopped.
But his demand that the other owners put up the same amount that he does is crazy. He’s the one issuing the challenge. He’s the one who’s certain he has the best 3-year-old in the world. The rival owners should only have to put up $1.25 million apiece, essentially sweetening their pots with odds.
If Maximum Security were to beat them all, West would get $5 million. But he’d have to beat them all, like West is sure he can.
Here’s what I’d love to see: They run the race, Maximum Security wins by 10 lengths — and gets disqualified in a truly bogus ruling.
Then, before West can open his mouth to begin Phase 1 of his endless complaining, his horse turns to him and says, “Sell me to a stud farm. Please.”
Biff? More like whiff
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported on Tuesday that the city’s sports books were getting hammered by wagers on Tiger Woods to win the grand slam, with odds ranging from anywhere from 50-to-1 to 100-to-1.
A Wisconsin man who made headlines last month by cashing a $1.2 million ticket on Woods to win the Masters put $100,000 on Tiger to win the next three majors, as well.
“It won’t stop. I’ve never seen tickets like this in my life,” William Hill sportsbook director Nick Bogdanovich told the paper. “They keep betting it like it’s ‘Back to the Future’ and they’ve already read the headline. It’s the damnedest thing I’ve ever seen.”
Unfortunately for the gamblers, it doesn’t appear any of them got their hands on Biff Tannen’s famous sports almanac. Woods shot 5 over par in the first two rounds and missed the cut at the PGA Championship.
Loosely related fun fact: The actor who played Biff Tannen in the “Back to the Future” movies, Thomas Wilson, has a son who pitches in the New York Mets organization. Tommy Wilson threw seven no-hit innings in a Florida State League start earlier this month.
Maybe the kid got all the secrets.