Preakness Stakes 2011: Does Animal Kingdom Have to Win to Maintain Fan Interest?
Preakness Stakes 2011 Is Coming Up, But Does Animal Kingdom Have To Win?
As far as horse racing's popularity in this country goes, we only get ourselves pumped up for two races a year.
We cannot wait for the Kentucky Derby to see who wins the biggest race in the sport. Then, we look forward to the Preakness Stakes and hope that the Derby winner can make it two-in-a-row and continue the pursuit of the Triple Crown.
Usually, we don't get that, but if we do, then all eyes are on the Belmont. If not, we sort of tune out and catch the winner's name in a headline on the Internet a day after the race. We have a short attention span as it is, and no one wants to watch a race without any real intrigue.
Why do you think that we don't see horse racing all year long? We only get it on TV when it's the biggest races of the year and when all of the drama is gone, we walk away from it, only to get excited for it a year later.
That is why Animal Kingdom has to win if the sport wants to keep the good times rolling. The Kentucky Derby was a huge success at the track and on TV and everyone is going to tune in to the Belmont to see if Animal Kingdom can continue to chase history.
If it loses, I would hate to see the ratings for the Belmont, because people will have completely forgotten by then and moved on to something else.
That's the type of society we live in, especially when it comes to sports. By the time the Belmont comes around, we'll be even more wrapped up in the NBA and NHL playoffs and won't even have one part of our brain tuned in to horse racing.
TV executives everywhere are going to be hoping and praying that Animal Kingdom can bring them good fortune, because if he wins, it's going to be a ratings bonanza for the Belmont.
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