Skip to main content

Kenny Mayne, Too Hot for TV?

Well I sure hope the demographics department at ESPN didn't come up with a blunder by scaling back analyst Kenny Mayne's airtime.

Yes we know that racing is watched by over 55's, yes we know we are not a "young person's sport" (well we tend to be with betfair, but that is a whole other story), but sheesh, can we not recognize talent in a broadcast that can help us grow?

How much of your work with ESPN revolves around horse racing?
"It's changed over time. It used to be none, and then it became a lot, and now it's back to very little. Not because I don't want to; it just kind of turned out that way with the new contract I have. I'm only going to be at the Triple Crown races, the Breeders' Cup and maybe one or two prep races. ... It was kind of funny -- for better or worse, they decided that when it came time for the really big ones -- the Belmont, the Breeders' Cup -- that I was a little too wild for the general audience. I can understand it to a certain degree because I definitely do things slightly less conventionally than the next guy, but it was accepted pretty well in horse racing. I mean, if (racing analyst) Randy Moss and (ex-jockey) Jerry Bailey are telling me they love the way it's going, then that's enough for me. ...


Here is a video piece from this brilliant racing fan, that injects fun and humour into our game. Click the watch the video graphic to make it play.

Here is what Kenny does for football. I don't think that is too wild, do you? I think this is one of the highest rated pieces in the pre-game. I know I watch this pre-game show, just to see what he will come up with.

I don't think people who watch racing over 55 years of age find anything different than most in these pieces - they are funny, and in our sport we need more of it. Not to mention it is from someone with a passion for racing.

How did you get hooked on the horses?
"I started going to Longacres when I was 9, usually with my Uncle Gordy. He was an attorney by trade, but he ended up with a little Laundromat in Kent, so me and my friends, we'd work for him, clean the dryers, mop the floors. We'd come in early on Saturday, have a late breakfast, buy the Racing Form and head down the West Valley Highway to the track. Those memories are still some of the fondest in my life. It's just a feeling; it's almost indescribable. It's the same feeling that others describe when they say, oh yeah, my uncle or my dad used to take me to Wrigley, or to Shea Stadium, or whatever it is. I really have that same feeling thinking back to those Longacres years, and I haven't found a track that perfectly replicates it. I think Santa Anita is close; that's the closest one."


I hope we see more of him, not less.

Comments