I didn’t watch the Kentucky Derby but I read almost every article there was on the story of the winner, California Chrome. I’m no stranger to race tracks considering my family has been taking me since I was little. I learned how to handicap a horse when I was around 8 from my Grandfather at Pimlico. My parents are also big on the horse racing and can be seen regularly at Saratoga in the summer as well as Gulfstream in Florida.
My father finds it relaxing to handicap horses. He spends hours calculating the stats and figuring out how the conditions of the track will affect the horses. I think he enjoys this so much because he has a very scientific mind, he’s a doctor. If my Dad is reading this, no, Dad, I do not think you have a gambling problem and I love you very much.
I never really got into horse racing but I did have a little gambling problem (poker) about 9 years ago. You know you may belong in Gamblers Anonymous when you’re kicked out of the Excalibur Hotel’s casino for fighting with a fat woman while drunk and also counting cards at a poker table. It was one of the most humiliating times of my life. I’m now 9 years clean and sober and haven’t gambled in that time as well. The worst part about that story is that I’m banned from one of the cheesiest hotels on the strip. It would have been more glamorous if I got booted from Paris Hotel or Caesars.
For the past nine years I’ve really worked hard on myself and have gotten my life back on track. I’m so far away from the girl I was who got kicked out of a really crappy casino in Vegas and I’m not the girl who used to sleep in her car while going through a divorce from my questionably gay ex husband. This brings me to the point of why I love California Chrome’s story so much. I love an underdog, being one myself.
The owners of California Chrome are Steve Coburn and Perry Martin. They’re just two average Joes. Coburn worked for a company in Nevada that makes magnetic tape for credit cards and Martin owns a California lab that tests air bags and landing gear. They worked 9 to 5 jobs and are everyday working men. You wouldn’t see them wearing plaid pants and Izod shirts at the country club with their kids named Muffy and Brad.
They scraped together $10,000 to get California Chrome. They were lucky and got their horse to the barn of Art Sherman, who at 77 became the horse’s trainer. Art Sherman started off as a jockey then became a trainer in 1980. “I never had the big stables or the moneyed people behind me, just mom and pop operations and people that’s always good friends,” he said. ” … It’s a different ballgame for me. Beating all the big boys and maybe they had their doubts that this horse wasn’t a runner … When you run against him you find out. He’s the real McCoy.’ Art said about Chrome and the Kentucky Derby.
Earlier in the week before the Kentucky Derby, Sherman visited the grave of Swaps, the 1955 Derby winner who he accompanied to the Kentucky Derby an exercise rider. He said he said a prayer, asking that California Chrome run as well as Swaps did. We all know what the power of prayer can do.
Coburn, one of the owners of California Chrome said, “we knew within our souls what kind of horse we had.”
Yeah this horse had destiny all over it. When you live in the spiritual world as I do, your gut instinct is God and God was taking care of this horse, its trainer and their owners all the way to the winners circle; past the wealthy upper class owners of the other horses. The tears of gratitude fell from the faces of everyone involved with California Chrome. The horse also brought glorious sunshine to the Kentucky Derby compared to last year’s chilly, overcast and rainy weather.
It was California Chrome’s destiny to win the Kentucky Derby. The horse is a true miracle, making the seemingly impossible, possible for a bunch of regular guys with big dreams. Miracles happen every day if you have faith and believe in them. To quote Wayne Dyer, “I’m realistic, I expect miracles.”