- About 25 minutes after walking calmly around the pre-parade ring at Royal Ascot today prior to the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes, Animal Kingdom suddenly stopped, turning his head left as his nostrils flared while he took in a scent, and dropped his penis and started acting stubborn. It was not a simple matter of Animal Kingdom having unsheathed his sword. The personal member was on display for quite a spell. The horse was gone.
"It happens to the best of us, " said pedigree expert and 4 and a half day a week guest on At the Races with Steve Byk, Sid Fernando, this morning via an Apple product.
"I remember this one time I was on twitter and people were talking about the Vietnamese Dong, trainer Richard Head and my old pal Mike De Kock. I was working on a pedigree at the time for a potential mating for a client and I simply got really distracted. The next thing you know my preferred cross turned into a Tapit mare being bred to a Clydesdale. Boy was my face red." he admitted.
"Lord knows I can relate," Joe Drape the New York Times racing writer told me today.
"Remember that story last year about mangled horses or whatever? I was writing a story originally about the majesty of horse racing and how much I like and adore Sunland Park, when I smelled hot dogs. I love hot dogs. It threw me off, and before I even realize it, I am handing in a completely different article."
"We all have bad days," noted Ray Paulick, from his private bunker at an undisclosed location.
"Just last week we were sitting in the sitting room and Flatliners came on. I've seen the movie 1000 times and know the Kevin Bacon lines by heart, but I watched it again of course; like seriously, who wouldn't? I got so distracted my article on the quarterhorse dude that had that horse die at Ruidoso suddenly had Baffert's name attached."
"What can I say, Kevin does that to me sometimes. I love the guy and get all giddy." said the purveyor of the Paulick Report.
Buffalo News racing blogger and the extremely pro-Buffalo Gene "Equispace" Kershner also feels the ills of distraction.
"One day I was happily writing my horse racing blog about how great a city Buffalo is to live in if you are a racing fan, and then boom, just like that, a replay came on showing Scott Norwood's kick go wide right. It threw me off so bad that I actually wrote a nice article about Erie Pennsylvania. Like, really. Erie freaking Pennsylvania!"
So before you decide to slag Mr. Irwin for his excuse (or hire him as a writer), just remember we all get distracted. And when we do get distracted - man, woman or beast - we simply can't do our best work.