Jun 11 2011

The Belmont Stakes

Are we through yet?

I’m sorry about my lack of enthusiasm, but as I’ve mentioned it’s the busiest time of the year.  This third race of the Triple Crown is the longest even though it doesn’t get the hype or coverage the other two do and usually serves as a reminder that we aren’t going to have a Triple Crown winner, not that it’s important.

For one thing Thoroughbred race horses are as ridiculously inbred as any Hillbilly, Hapsburg, or Versailles Villager (yes, I’m talking about you Luke Russert).  For another it’s just stupid to judge them on the basis of 3 races when they are a mere 3 years old.

But we’ve indulged in Bullfighting and Bear Baiting for thousands of years and cock and dog fights are still popular with a certain sadistic mindset.  Horse racing, as cruel as it is, isn’t necessarily harmful to the ponies or those that watch them.  It is a spectacular display of wasted resources by our oligarch upper class.

The Belmont Stakes are perhaps the most democratic of the Triple Crown Races even though it is held in Queens.  Indications of that are they can’t settle on a song or a drink.  The song has ranged from Sidewalks of New York, a charming Tin Pan Alley tune better known as East Side, West Side, to the Theme from New York, New York (as performed by Frank Sinatra and appropriated as the Yankees anthem and not the original Liza Minelli rendition), to 2010’s Empire State of Mind by Jay-Z (I can’t believe that will last for long).

Likewise the drink has changed from the absolutely un-potable White Carnation to the refined trashcan punch that is the Belmont Breeze.

I suggest instead the classic Cosmopolitan.


  • Ice cubes
  • 1 1/2 fluid ounces lemon vodka
  • 1 fluid ounce Cointreau
  • fluid ounce cranberry juice
  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Long thin piece orange zest


Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add the vodka, Cointreau, and cranberry and lime juices. Cover and shake vigorously to combine and chill. Strain the cosmopolitan into a chilled martini glass. Twist the orange zest over the drink and serve.

Note: The drink can also be stirred in a pitcher.

In my club, we used to call this a Woo-Woo and there are 2 things to remember about it.  First, you can never have enough ice.  Second, no toast is too long.

May the camels of your great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, grand children be numerous and healthy.


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  1. ek hornbeck
  2. TMC

    Today is the anniversary of Sir Barton’s winning of the Belmont Stakes in 1919, becoming the first winner of the Triple Crown

    Ross placed Sir Barton in the hands of trainer H. Guy Bedwell and jockey Johnny Loftus. At three, he made his season debut as a maiden in the Kentucky Derby. He was supposed to be the rabbit for his highly regarded stablemate, a horse named Billy Kelly. (A rabbit is a speed horse set up to wear out the rest of the field, thereby allowing another horse to win.) However, it was Sir Barton who led the field of 12 horses from start to finish, winning the race by five lengths. Just four days later, the horse was in Baltimore and won the Preakness Stakes, beating Eternal. Again he led all the way. He then won the Withers Stakes in New York and shortly thereafter completed the first Triple Crown in U.S. history by easily winning the Belmont Stakes, setting an American record for the mile and three-eighths race, the distance for the Belmont at the time. Amazingly, Sir Barton’s four wins were accomplished in a space of just 32 days. He was voted the 1919 Horse of the Year, American racing’s highest honor.


    Picture was taken at Belmont.

  3. TMC

    The Race track isn’t in Queens, its in the town of Hempstead, in Nassau County. L.I.

  4. ek hornbeck

    Same suit, same shirt, same tie.

    Dressing up your twins is only cute if they’re two.

  5. ek hornbeck

    Do people ever get tired of being wrong?

  6. ek hornbeck
  7. ek hornbeck

    Thank goodness the Yanks are going nowhere this season.

  8. TMC

    One horse decided that the song was the signal to run

  9. TMC
  10. TMC
  11. ek hornbeck

    hello fodder,

    Here I am in, Camp Grenader.

    Camp is very entertaining,

    And they say we’ll have some fun if it stops raining!

  12. ek hornbeck

    He got tomain poisoning last night after dinner!

  13. ek hornbeck
  14. TMC
  15. ek hornbeck

    Shackleford takes the early lead.

    Animal Kingdom dead last after a disasterous start.

  16. TMC

    almost lost his rider. 12 lengths behind Shackleford

  17. TMC
  18. ek hornbeck

    4 most romantic words in the English language.

  19. TMC

    but I think it was a factor. That and the bad start by Animal Kingdom and the pre-race sprint by Shackleford

  20. TMC
  21. ek hornbeck

    I promise to care this time.

    No, really.

  22. ek hornbeck

    Stay Thirsty

    Brilliant Speed

    Tell me you’ve heard about a single one of these horses before today.

    I dare you.

  23. ek hornbeck

    but when I do…

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