Like a lot of Americans, I don’t really follow horse racing but still get a kick out of the Kentucky Derby, mainly because it’s a good excuse for a party. So on Saturday I baked a derby pie, put Uni Watch designated raceday tomato Amanda Madden on my arm, and headed over to Watch Your Back impresario Brian Corrigan‘s pad, where a TV/BBQ party was in full swing. In between bites of grilled chicken and swigs of beer (no mint juleps for me this year), I made the following observations:
- The jockeys’ silks were a mixed bag. My favorites were the ones worn by Shaun Bridgmohan, who was riding Zanjero.
- Winning jockey Calvin Borel looked fairly sharp, bow tie and all. I kept wondering what happened to the propeller on his beanie, though. Also: I know it was muddy out there, but why did he have four pairs of goggles (here’s another view)? Was he switching them on the fly during the race? If anyone knows more about how this works, fill us in.
- I liked how the tape on some of the horses’ ankles created the equine equivalent of striped socks.
From there I headed over to the Mendez Boxing Club in Manhattan, where I joined No Mas principals Dave Larzelere and Chris Isenberg to watch the Mayweather/De La Hoya bout. It was a pretty raucous scene, never more so than when Floyd donned that big-ass sombrero for his ring entrance. He also wore the Mexican colors on his robe, trunks, and shoes, plus his cornermen were wearing “Mexico Loves Mayweather” T-shirts, all of which seemed like an obvious ploy to steal De La Hoya’s Mexican-identified mojo. Since turnabout is fair play, I was hoping Oscar would come out in blackface and some gangsta tattoos, but wit has never been the Golden Boy’s strong suit. Anyway, it was way too loud at the Mendez for me to hear any explanation that Jim Lampley or Larry Merchant might have offered for Mayweather’s Mexican-themed attire. Did they discuss it?
Meanwhile, anyone know the story behind the little portraits appearing on Mayweather’s WBC belts? Like, are they the faces of the current champions in the various weight divisions? The faces of fighters Mayweather beat to win his titles? If anyone knows, kindly fill us in.
Missing Persons Dept.: Hey, Ben Nickerson, if you’re reading this, please get in touch asap. Thanks.
Uni Watch Midwestern Road Trip Update: I’m happy to announce that the venue for this Saturday’s Uni Watch Chicagoland party will be the Montrose Saloon. So the weekend party itinerary is now set: We’ll be convening in Minneapolis this Friday evening, 7:30pm, at the very wonderful Nye’s Polonaise Room. And then, precisely 24 hours later, I’ll see all you Chi-town folks at the Montrose. Looking forward to it.
Uni Watch News Ticker: Not sure how we all missed this until now, but someone on the Chris Creamer boards alertly noticed that the Mariners have switched from using nameplates (that photo is from last season, and so are this, this, and this) to direct-sewn lettering (as additionally seen here, here, here, and here) — a major improvement. … Good slide show here on the history of sponsorship in the German Bundesliga soccer league (with thanks to Jeremy Brahm). … Interesting eBay items here, here, here, and here. … The Giants did the Gigantes thing for Cinco de Mayo. … Interesting note from Kel Hinkle, who writes, “I was at my daughter’s softball game on Saturday and the opposing team’s pitcher wore a mask.” Yikes — looks like Hannibal Lechter on the mound! … Bit of golf attire commentary here (as spotted by Seth Horowitz).