Tony Kornheiser of ESPN’s Pardon the Interruption said it best today.
“Three industries that are completely on the downswing are boxing, newspapers and horse racing.”
They are clearly replaced with poker, blogging and ultimate fighting.
But this weekend at least horse racing and boxing, which were gigantic in the American cultural sports fabric forty years ago, made the headlines.
In the boxing world, Bernard Hopkins of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania became the oldest boxer Saturday night to win a World Championship title. At 46, he won a twelve-round decision over Montreal’s Jean Pascal to win the WBC Light Heavyweight Title at Montreal’s Bell Centre in front of 17,560 fans. Hopkins broke George Foreman’s record.
Foreman became the WBA and IBF Heavyweight champion at age 45, when he knocked out Michael Moorer in 1994. But it should be noted that he retained his IBF title for another five months when he defeated Axel Schulz of Germany in April, the following year.
In horse racing, for the 33rd straight year, there will not be a triple crown winner. Shackleford prevented a late charge by Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom to win Saturday’s Preakness. Animal Kingdom had a very slow start and excellent finish.
The Preakness, is the most anticipated horse racing event of the year, more than the Kentucky Derby. The reason is because now everyone knows what horse to watch out for and which one has a chance of making history.
Animal Kingdom did not deliver Saturday, which means Affirmed, in 1978, remains the last horse to win the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes in the same year.