Two-Minute Lick - Mike Kane and Allan Carter
“150 Years of Racing in Saratoga” - Authors Allan Carter and Mike Kane take a look back at some of the epic moments and other important but neglected stories which took place at Saratoga Race Course. The book also presents statistics from the pre-NYRA years and a rundown of the greatest fields assembled at America’s oldest track.
Mike Kane was a newspaper sportswriter and columnist for thirty years, twenty-five of them at the Schenectady Gazette and acted as the communications officer at the National Museum of Racing. Kane won the Red Smith Kentucky Derby Writing Contest in five consecutive years and is the former president of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association. He resides in upstate New York with his wife and family.
Allan Carter was a law librarian at the New York State Library for thirty years, retiring in 2003. In 1995, he was given the West Excellence in Government Law Librarianship Award. Prominent among his many publications were New York State Constitution: Sources of Legislative Intent and Public Library Law in New York State. He joined the National Museum of Racing as an assistant to the historian and became the museum’s historian in 2004.
Names: Allan Carter and Mike Kane
What I do for a living:
AC: Retired. I was a law librarian.
How and when I was introduced to Thoroughbred racing:
AC: A friend practically forced me to go with him to opening day in Saratoga, July 31, 1967.
MK: Visited Saratoga Race Course with some friends as a fan in the late 1960s.
My favorite racetrack:
AC: Saratoga. Where else?
MK: Saratoga Race Course
My favorite Thoroughbred racing event:
AC: The Travers
MK: Kentucky Derby. I’ve been to the Derby many times and it always delivers. The sound that the crowd makes when the gates open is amazing.
Other sports/teams I follow:
AC: Baseball and tennis
MK: Lifelong fan of just one team, the New York Yankees, but I follow most sports, especially baseball, hockey and international soccer.
What I would like to see more of in Thoroughbred Racing:
AC: More prominent 3-year-olds race at four
MK: Track officials who truly appreciate the sport, listen to their customers and are clever promoters; uniform rules and penalties across the country; more coverage in mainstream media, especially television.
What I would like to see less of in Thoroughbred racing:
AC: Prominent 3-year-olds retiring at three
MK: Long programs padded with extra races
Three words that define what Thoroughbred racing means to me:
AC: Pageantry, courage, beauty
MK: History, drama, competition
Favorite all-time Thoroughbred:
MK: Personal Ensign
My personal best moment in the sport of Thoroughbred racing:
AC: Being at Belmont Park for the 1973 Belmont [Stakes].
MK: Favorite race is the 1994 Travers with Holy Bull holding off Concern ... by a nostril over Blame-Zenyatta. A career highlight was covering Funny Cide and the Sackatoga Stable gang through that remarkable run.
My favorite jockey:
AC: Angel Cordero, Jr.
MK: Jerry Bailey
My favorite trainer:
AC: Sidney Watters Jr.
MK: Mack Miller.
AC: John Kennedy, Ann-Margret
MK: Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Nelson Mandela
What would surprise those who know me:
MK: Though I’ve made my living as a journalist, I had no confidence in my writing ability when I was in college and avoided classes that required papers. Difficult to do when your concentration is on history.
My favorite athlete of all time:
AC: Willie Mays, Roger Federer, Secretariat
MK: Muhammad Ali
Most treasured possession/memento:
MK: Music collection
A pet peeve:
AC: Owners and trainers who retire champion 3-year-olds by saying they have nothing more to prove
MK: Close-minded people
What book(s) I am reading or have recently read:
AC: “The Art of Losing”; “An Indian Summer” (about India seceding from the Great Britain
MK: “The Oath” by Jeffrey Toobin; “My Cross to Bear” by Gregg Allman; “The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest” by Steig Larsson
MK: The New Yorker, Sports Illustrated
AC: Brooklyn Backstretch, Paulick Report, BloodHorse.com, New York Times
MK: I visit daily/weekly: New York Times, Daily Racing Form;Thoroughbred Daily News
Person in Thoroughbred racing I’d like to have dinner with:
AC: Harvey Pack
MK: Allen Jerkens
If I could go back in time, a person in Thoroughbred racing I would like to meet:
MK: Sunny Jim Fitzsimmons
My philosophy on life:
AC: Don’t waste a day.
MK: Work hard, tell the truth but don’t forget to have some fun along the way.
Favorite quote or motto:
AC: Carpe Diem.
MK: Calm and confident.
Favorite animal other than a horse:
MK: Dogs. We have owned Shih-Tzus for many years.
Favorite non-Thoroughbred racing sports event I have attended:
AC: U.S. Open (tennis), World Series
MK: Olympic Games
AC: I’ve never been a twitterer or a twitteree.
MK: None. Thus far, I am Twitter-free.
No. 1 Bucket List Item:
AC: To see the Melbourne Cup, the English Derby and the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe
MK: A long, slow “Blue Highways”-type journey around North America