Watching jockey Calvin Borel win his third Kentucky Derby last Saturday was about as exciting as two minutes can be. Thinking about the race as a sales metaphor isn’t nearly as exciting, but it is instructive.
Borel had done his homework and according to Super Saver’s trainer Todd Pletcher (whose record IN the Derby was 0-24 before Saturday’s race), “I don’t think I’ve ever had a jockey come to the paddock more focused. He was in the zone.” But focus wasn’t the only skill the Louisiana native had going for him.
Before the race even began, circumstances and challenges presented themselves. Eskendereya, another of Pletcher’s horses and the early Derby favorite, scratched due to an ankle injury. The relentless rain turned the track into mush, which favors different horses than a dry track and thus inevitably changes the dynamics and the jockey’s race strategy.