Not the beverage koozie.
A couple of weeks that have been choked by distraction for Doug O'Neill and his
He was supposed to adorn koozies -- yeah, those things that keep your beer from getting warm -- given to fans today.
O'Neill, despondent, declined comment.
OK. That last sentence isn't true. But the trainer on the cusp of running for the Triple Crown did take unusual action this morning when he brought his horse to the track at 5:30, right when it opened.
“It’s been very hectic the last few days, so we thought we would take him out when it’s quieter,” O’Neill said. “The detention barn setup with all 12 of the
The horse galloped and jogged at a reasonable pace, and continues to do well, O'Neill said.
I'll Have Another has been portrayed by O'Neill as an unreasonably calm -- verging on lazy -- horse when he's not on the track. And O'Neill is as personable as can be, dealing with the media onslaught in New York with the same sarcastic, self-effacing humor he employed on quiet days in Baltimore before anyone really thought he could win a Triple Crown. But today's actions are an ackowledgement that the last few days, with the attention intensifying, have taken a toll.
Team O'Neill was scheduled to throw out the first pitch at
It should be noted that not every omen has gone against O'Neill in recent days. Following racing at Belmont Park yesterday, a light rain fell through puffy clouds and two bright, full rainbows stretched through the sky to the East. O'Neill, who is Irish (could you guess?), wears a lucky shamrock tie for big races.