Midnight Train to Jonesville

Larry Jones horse whispering to Buy the Barrel (wendyu)

Get ready to hop aboard the midnight train to Jonesville, Larry Jones-ville that is! Not only are the Hennegans following Jones around with with their cameras this weekend (and hopefully twittering soon! hint, hint), Joe Drape’s feature in the NY Times is currently the lead story on the Times’ sports page. I don’t know about you, but I’m already liking this year’s Derby hype coverage waaaay more than last year’s!

No doubt you’re waiting to see how everyone does tomorrow before you place your futures wagers for both the Derby and the Oaks. Don’t forget, this year’s wagering menu introduces the futuracta!

Speaking of the Oaks, this year’s TV coverage is being dropped by ESPN. However, it’s being picked by Bravo, who had already planned to do a one hour Oaks day special, geared towards the ladies.

Churchill spokesman John Asher said Bravo’s Oaks coverage has the potential to reach new fans.

“While ESPN did cover a considerable chunk of Oaks Day, we’re very excited that we’ll be able to reach a new audience for the Kentucky Oaks on the Bravo telecast of activities surrounding the Kentucky Oaks and Susan G. Komen for the Cure. We think that presents wonderful opportunities.

While ESPN gets a big thumbs down for this move, bravo to Bravo. Plenty of racing fans of the female variety, myself included, have mentioned that making the game more accessible to women would be a great thing, so cheers for that. On the other hand, part of me thinks this has the potential to be similar to the new insipid positioning of menswear inspired women’s wear as “boyfriend”wear.

It’s times like this I try to remind myself that not everyone has to experience racing in the same way to find it enjoyable. I’ll be watching the simulcast signal, but if Bravo can attract some new folks to the game or at the very least broaden it’s appeal, that’s probably not a bad thing. Particularly compared to no coverage at all.

And finally, this fan of racing and technology is very happy to see Jessica blogging again at the newly upgraded Railbird v2. Newly expanded focus, same smart observations. Other recent smart observations include Pull the Pocket on thinking like a marketer and the Wind Gatherer with an appeal.

I’m off to do a bit of handicapping, best of luck this weekend!