2014-04-23

Kentucky Derby Festival to Feature the Louisville Youth Orchestra This Weekend



Founded in 1958 as an outgrowth of the Louisville Academy of Musics summer orchestral program, the Louisville Youth Orchestra has evolved into one of the more active and engaged of its kind in the country. In its nearly sixty-year history, the LYO has given hundreds of performances within the community including performances at the Kentucky Governors Mansion and numerous State Fairs. In that time, the Youth Orchestra has also toured to Chicago, Pittsburgh, Nashville and Buffalo as well as abroad to Lausanne, Switzerland where it performed as part of the International Festival of Youth Orchestras in 1971.
The Youth Orchestra has also welcomed dozens of world-class musical collaborators including conductors Robert Whitney, Jorge Mester and Lawrence Leighton Smith as well as guest artists Daniel Heifetz, Lee Luvisi and My Morning Jacket (yes, that My Morning Jacket).
The Youth Orchestra (which is a compilation of several ensembles that feature nearly 400 student musicians) has been featured each spring as a Kentucky Derby Festival main event for six years and counting. Showcasing pop music favorites from Broadway tunes to classic movies scores, the concert has become a community tradition and a staple of Derby enthusiasts that offers something for everyone.
The performances will begin at 4 pm this Sunday, April 27th. Admission is free with a 2014 Pegasus Pin.




2014-04-23

Kentucky Derby Food Countdown Pack some tradition



You're allowed to pack your lunch to take into the track just make sure it is in a clear plastic bag. As for booze, you're on your own. Many try, few succeed in getting their spirits past the security checkpoints.

We're here to talk about some traditional food to take into the track to provide the nourishment necessary for standing in line for betting, the restrooms, and buying those Juleps and beer.

Here are a couple sandwiches from The C-J's recipe archive that can play a part of the Kentucky Derby tradition.

First off is the cold Hot Brown. It's not quite the cardiologist's dream served with artery-clogging cheese sauce at The Brown Hotel. Let's be real, it's a turkey-bacon sandwich. But it's all about the name and packaging. It does have some extras to make it special.

THE COLD HOT BROWN
Prepare turkey breast a day in advance

Whole turkey breast
Salt and pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons assorted dried herbs (poultry seasoning, rosemary, thyme, sage what you have on hand and like to use) 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
Vegetables to make a roasting base:onions, carrots, celery
1 pound bacon
1 pound Kenny's horseradish cheddar Farmhouse Cheese
Miracle Whip or mayo
Romaine lettuce
Tomatoes only if you can find some good ones Multi-grain bread

Prepare turkey breast the night before. Season with plenty of the herbs and seasonings plus salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Chop in quarters two onions, scrape and cut in half 4 carrots, clean 4 to 6 ribs of celery, and place all vegetable in bottom of a roasting pan. Place turkey breast over vegetables. This allows you to use vegetables as a roasting rack. Add 1 cup water. Cover, and roast at 350 degrees for about 1 to 2 hours or until temperature reads 160 degrees on a meat thermometer. Baste turkey every 45 minutes or so. Let rest in pan for an hour or so then remove from juices. Store turkey in large plastic storage bag in refrigerator overnight.

Slice turkey breast in about 1/8-inch slices. Set aside. Fry bacon or bake in oven on 375 degrees for about 15 minutes. Slice cheese in thin slices. Set aside. Lightly toast bread slices, if desired. Dress bread with mayo or Miracle Whip.

Stack sandwich with cheese, turkey, bacon, tomatoes (if you have them), and lettuce. Top with dressed slice of bread. Cut sandwich diagonally in half to serve. Makes about a dozen sandwiches.

These sandwiches will probably keep you thirsty all day for water, soft drinks or a dozen or so Mint Juleps. Country ham is salt cured. If you take these sandwiches, be prepared to hydrate.

Both of these sandwiches should be part of the Derby tradition.
COUNTRY HAM SANDWICH SPREAD
3 cups ground country ham
3 stalks celery, minced
cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 stalks celery, minced
cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
cup Sweet Dillies zesty pickle relish

Combine ground country ham with remaining ingredients. Add additional mayonnaise to achieve desired moisture and consistency. Use as a sandwich spread, or as a dip or spread on crackers. Makes about 4 cups of spread.




2014-04-23

Bob Baffert reacts to being the bad guy in '50 To 1'



Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert is repeatedly depicted as the sneering face of the racing establishment in the new film about Mine That Bird's improbable 2009 Kentucky Derby victory. Though Baffert said Wednesday he had not seen the movie, he has heard enough about it to be annoyed.

"Chip Woolley told me, 'You were the only nice guy to me all week and they made you a rotten son of a gun in the movie,' " Baffert said, recounting a conversation with Mine That Bird's trainer. "I had an owner call me up in Arkansas and tell me, "Man, you ought to sue.' They made me the villain."

Director Jim Wilson's film traces the improbable path Woolley and Mine That Bird's owners took to the winner's circle at Churchill Downs.

Wilson, who is also credited among the film's writers, says he has known Baffert for 25 years, and that, "he can be pretty arrogant at times."

As the trainer of three Derby winners and 2009 runner-up Pioneerof The Nile, Baffert also made for a convenient and familiar foil.

"If you take a shot at somebody," Wilson said, "Baffert's the guy."

"They knocked Bobby a little bit," said jockey Calvin Borel, who plays himself in the film. "You know how Bobby is."

White-haired actor Bruce Wayne Eckelman plays Baffert with his trademark sunglasses, but without the humor that often lightens some of the trainer's more caustic comments.

"Everybody knows that horse doesn't belong here," Eckelman says of Mine That Bird in one scene. "Frankly, I wouldn't be worried if they had God riding for them.''

Baffert compared the portrayal to that of the late trainer Pancho Martin in Disney's "Secretariat." Martin, who trained the rival three-year-old Sham, was shown as obnoxious and belligerent in an effort to create an antagonist in the story of a surpassing thoroughbred whose Triple Crown campaign was short on real drama.

Baffert, by comparison, comes off as snide but not combative, and is shown in his last scene giving a grudgingly gracious post-race interview about Mine That Bird's connections.

"I'm the only one who would talk to them all week 'cause I knew them," Baffert said Wednesday outside his barn. "I knew those guys (from) the quarterhorse business. For some reason, Jim Wilson and those guys, they never asked me. That's not me at all. ...

"But what are you going to do? Luckily, I don't think very many people are going to see that movie. I don't think I have anything to worry about."




2014-04-23

Kentucky Derby update Baffert praises California Chrome



Buzz remains firmly on Santa Anita Derby winner California Chrome, which trainer Bob Baffert, in his first day at Churchill, received more questions about from reporters than his own Derby hopefuls. The Art Sherman-trained colt is expected to ship to Louisville on Monday and gallop at Churchill. He will not go out for a timed work.

"As long as he breaks and he's in the clear...he just keeps going," Bafftert said, adding that "he's a nice looking horse" who doesn't seem to tire. California Chrome reminds Baffert of 2002 Derby winner War Emblem.

Baffert talked just past 7:30 a.m. about his contenders, saying Chitu and Bayern, both of which worked Monday, will be entered in Saturday's Derby Trial. Pending defections, they could still move to the Kentucky Derby. Baffert has Rebel Stakes winner Hoppertunity squarely in the field.

Hoppertunity worked five furlongs in company with Drill, a multiple graded stakes winner, finishing in 1:00.20 on the outside. Baffert said afterward he wasn't satisfied with how Drill pushed Hoppertunity, but otherwise the workout went well.
Trainer Mike Maker's General a Rod, moved to Churchill from the trackside training facility Tuesday, went five furlongs in 1:03.40 and galloped out six in 1:17.60. Ride On Curlin and others, such as Danza, Commanding Curve and Big Bazinga, galloped Wednesday morning.

Ria Antonia, a confirmed Oaks entry for Baffert, went five furlongs Wednesday in 1:00.60 and galloped out six in 1:14.80 under jockey Rosie Napravnik. With Baffert having pulled Awesome Baby from Oaks contention earlier this week, the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies winner Ria Antonia is his only remaining contender.

Baffert said that despite Awesome Baby's fourth-place standing in the Road to the Oaks points, he never intended to enter intended to enter the Awesome Again filly, winner of all three of her starts, in the May 2 race.




2014-04-17

CAESARS INTERACTIVE TO OFFER NETELLER SERVICE (Update)



Optimal Payments Plc has extended its existing online gaming partnership with Caesars Interactive Entertainment (CIE) with the addition of payment services option NETELLER.

Optimal Payments' NETELLER service was re-launched to the broader U.S. market early last month (see previous InfoPowa report). The re-launched NETELLER service and Net+ Card was re-branded with a new look and feel and offers updated features, capabilities and security.

CIE will now offer the NETELLER service to customers of CaesarsCasino.com, HarrahsCasino.com and WSOP.com in both Nevada and New Jersey.

Providing safe, secure and convenient payments to our customers is our top focus and NETELLER allows us to do that, commented Marco Ceccarelli, senior vice president and chief technology officer, CIE. We are thrilled to offer NETELLER in both New Jersey and Nevada effective immediately and anticipate this offering will be a popular choice for existing and new customers.

Optimal Payments and Caesars Interactive Entertainment have a longstanding partnership that strategically binds our two companies, added Neil Erlick, executive vice-president, business development, Optimal Payments. We already provide CIE with gateway services related to payment processing and now, with the addition of our new NETELLER and Net+ Card stored value offering, we hope to make it even simpler for their consumers in regulated gaming markets to do business with this leader in gaming. We plan to support the company as it rolls out its social gaming offerings in the years ahead.