Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Louisville coach chasing Derby win as a co-owner
Kentucky Derby » Pitino hopes to ride personal hot streak to winner’s circle.
First Published May 02 2013 08:49 am • Last Updated May 03 2013 12:19 am

Louisville, Ky. • Rick Pitino became a Hall of Famer and an NCAA champion on the same day. Now the Louisville basketball coach is positioned to become a Kentucky Derby-winning owner if Goldencents wins on Saturday.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Talk about the greatest four weeks ever.

Despite attempts to downplay his hot streak, Pitino’s appearance for Wednesday’s workout at Churchill Downs showed how much people like being around a winner. He looked every bit the rock star wearing sunglasses as he walked through a throng of Cardinals and race fans who had waited patiently outside the barn.

And to think, Pitino owns just 5 percent of the horse that is a 5-1 choice to win the Derby from the No. 8 post. But given his current roll, it’s hard to bet against him.

"Obviously, we’re rooting for Goldencents, but the Derby is something that you never know" how it will evolve, Pitino said. "If we don’t win it, I’d like to see someone like (trainer) Shug McGaughey win it. He’s never won the Derby, he’s a great trainer and a friend of mine. I’d like to see a Goldencents-Orb exacta, that would be awesome.


story continues below
story continues below

"It’s anybody’s ball game. It’s not like basketball, where you can look at a team and say they’ve got a little bit more firepower. You just don’t know in the Derby because you don’t know who’s going to get into racing trouble."

Perhaps, but Pitino is an active participant in thoroughbred racing’s crown jewel because Goldencents overcame adversity to win last month’s Santa Anita Derby and earn his way into the 139th Run for the Roses.

After moving outside to surge past pacesetter Super Ninety Nine on the final turn, the brown colt held off Flashback for a one-length victory that came just hours before Louisville rallied past Wichita State 72-68 in a national semifinal in Atlanta. Goldencents instantly became part of a phenomenal roll for Pitino, the school and the city, boosting local rooting interest for the Derby.

Two days later, Pitino was elected to the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame and the Cardinals went on to beat Michigan 82-76 for their first national championship since 1986. Louisville’s women’s team reached the NCAA final before their amazing run ended with a blowout loss to Connecticut.

Euphoria remains evident nearly a month later with Goldencents T-shirts joining the sea of Cardinals red championship gear. Many are hoping the karma is just as strong on Saturday when the horse battles morning line favorite Orb (7-2) and unbeaten Verrazano (4-1), the second choice.

Next Page >


Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Login to the Electronic Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.