3 is my lucky number. And Purple is a very spiritual and healing color. With my system for picking horses, do you think I should play the horses?

3 is my lucky number. And purple is a very spiritual and healing color. With my system for picking horses, do you think I should place a bet?

I love horses.

The Triple Crown races are the only sports events I watch on TV (well, except for dog agility–now there’s a sport worth watching if you can find any network covering it)!

I'm telling you, People, you'll be sitting on the edge of your Laz-E-Boy!

I’m telling you, People, you’ll be sitting on the edge of your Laz-E-Boy!

2014 could be the year to break the 36-year Triple Crown dry spell.

California Chrome with his XXXL Breathe Right Nasal Strips in place might just do it. Or not.

He's the only horse that doesn't snore.

He’s the only horse that doesn’t snore.

We’ve been here before.

Since the Triple Crown began only 11 horses won all three races (The Kentucky Derby, The Preakness, and the Belmont Stakes).

11 horses since 1978 won two of the races and finished in 2nd or 3rd in the other race. So we’ve had some close calls, but close only counts in horse shoes, not horse races.

The first one dates back to 1919.

3 of the 11 won in the 1930’s.

4 of the 11 won in the 1940’s.

3 of the 11 won in the 1970’s.

We’ve had bupkis, zilch, no-jumpy-up-and-downy since.

Since I really can’t face more rewrites on my book care about horses and a thrilling horse race, I’ve been pondering why the heck I have to try to remember what it was like in 1978 when Affirmed won the Triple Crown. Thank goodness my long-term memory still sort of works.

I was 17 and looking good. Senior year was about to end and I was named class Valedictorian. My boyfriend still loved me and my blonde hair was long. I played my guitar and sang love songs to him…and anyone else who would listen. I wanted to get a tan. And all internal organs were present and fully functioning. Man, those days were good.

Imagine me singing you a love song while strumming my Martin guitar, which I still have, by the way...

Imagine me singing you a love song while strumming my Martin guitar, which I still have, by the way…(the guitar, not the long hair or 17-year-old smooth looks)

But this tells me nothing about what was different between then and now in the thoroughbred world that makes winning the Triple Crown so darned tricky.

Being a hippophiliac (crazy horse-lover) doesn’t make me an expert in deducing why the Triple Crown has been a no-go for 36 years, but being uninformed hasn’t stopped me yet.

Here’s what hasn’t changed:

1. The names and places of the three races. It’s not like some National Horse Federation Monkey-Monk pulled a switcheroo and didn’t tell the horses.

2. The length of the races. They are all different and go by really fast.

3. The size of the jockeys. They all come in extra-small.

Make sure to wind him up real good right before race time!

Make sure to wind him up real good right before race time!

Here’s what may have changed:

1. The starting gates might be more high tech. Maybe horses are like me and other older people, they can’t keep up with all the new-fangled techno-crap.

2. Feed mixtures and feeding routines may be different. Some dog foods make the dogs on commercials run and jump over fences. You’d think they could come up with horse food that could put more zippity-do-da in those thoroughbreds.

3. The weather. Never rule out global climate change as the cause for any freaky-deaky thing that you can’t explain otherwise. I’m beginning to think my tummy troubles are caused by the weather.

According to this weather map, something fishy is happening to a large portion of America...

According to this weather map, something fishy is happening to a large part of America…

Here’s what has definitely changed:

1. Thoroughbreds today are bred for looks and quick speed, not endurance. (I learned this from reading an expert on thoroughbreds). They are more “delicate” and prone to injury, so owners and trainers are more cautious with them.

This is the Kentucky Derby, after all. If I make a decent showing here, I could be put out to stud. Not a bad life, eh?

This is the Kentucky Derby, after all. If I do well here, I could be put out to stud. Not a bad life, eh? (The horse is speaking, not the old guy, just to clarify.)

2. The horses that are entered, even though they are 3-year-olds, haven’t had as many races under their belts as the horses in the 30’s, 40’s and 70’s. Seems like winning one leg of the Triple Crown is good enough for many owners to get their money’s worth from the horse.

3. The same horses aren’t necessarily running against each other in the last leg of the Triple Crown. The “Contender” for the big win may be running against several horses that are fresh and haven’t just run two races in a short time span. Kind of seems unfair.

In the end, all I really want is for every horse and every jockey to have a safe and good, clean run.

But it sure would be nice to see another Triple Crown winner before I totally lose my faculties and start rooting for the Shetland Sheep Dog to win the Kentucky Derby.

When did it become a Finish Ring and not a Finish Line?

When did it become a Finish Ring and not a Finish Line?

Saturday, June 7 will tell the tale… Will this be the year that ends the Triple Crown dry spell?

(All photos courtesy of Google Images)