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Horse Racing – 1986 – ESPNs Kentucky Derby Pre Race Festivities – Host Greg Gumbel + Sharon Smith


The 1986 Kentucky Derby was the 112th running of the race….which took place on May 3, 1986….as this ESPN Pre-Race Special was aired live at Churchill Downs the day before the race….featuring hosts Greg Gumbel and Sharon Smith in a program that is highlighted by Derby betting line expert, Mike Battaglia…. who provides the betting odds going into the race….with Ferdinand being 10 – 1, Mogumbo at 10 – 1, Wise Times at 12 – 1, Bold Arrangement at 12 – 1, Icy Groom at 12 -1, Southern Appeal at 12 – 1, Rampage at 20 -1 and Vernon Castle at 30 – 1….so, there wasn’t any heavy favorite going into this 112th Kentucky Derby.

Gumbel and Scott then provide a video overview and synopsis of all the potential winners of the race…. which includes interviews with D Wayne Lukas….the trainer of Ferdinand….who was ridden by legendary jockey Willie Shoemaker…..on what would turn out to be the great Willie the Shoe”‘s final Kentucky Derby victory….along with his 11th and final Triple Crown races final victory….capping off an incredible career. This section of the program also provided an in depth interview with Jockey Chris McCaron….who would be up top of Bold Arrangement for this Derby.

Longtime ABC horse racing broadcasting expert, Jack Whitaker finishes off this wonderful 1987 ESPN Kentucky Derby Pre-Race production….in a fashion that only Whitaker could do….as he always seemed to have just the right thing to say about an upcoming race.  

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