Kenny Mayne, the iconic figure from ESPN's SportsCenter, provided an entertaining call of the fifth race on Sunday at Santa Anita. While Mayne stuck to some of racecalling's storied traditions, his opening line “And they've left the machine” was not among them.
The long-time racing fan did manage to name off the leading horses correctly, even identifying the one “female horse” in the open contest, at least, for the first portion of the maiden claiming sprint for California-breds. As the field rounded the turn for home, the gray Mighty Mousse had the lead but was about to face a stiff challenge from Nardo in “the checks,” referring to jockey Flavien Prat's silks.
Those two came down to the wire together, and Mayne's winning call was: “And it's Mighty Mousse by a neck… I think.” Unfortunately, Mayne was wrong, as Nardo nailed Mighty Mousse on the wire to win the race for trainer Mike Puype. Frank Mirahmadi, one of the race callers vying for the position at Santa Anita, Tweeted shortly after the race that Mayne just “needed the race.”
The unfortunate thing for @Kenny_Mayne is that his instincts were correct when he gave Nardo the first call mid-stretch.He “needed the race”
— Frank Mirahmadi (@FrankMirahmadi) January 17, 2016
ESPN posted a video account of the race call on their website on Tuesday, available here.
The reaction on Twitter was immediately polarizing:
Somwhere, Steve Harvey is laughing his ass off right now #mightymoussebyaneckithink
— Mark Ratzky (@TashmanMortyS) January 17, 2016
Given how his Seahawks' season just ended today, I'm impressed @Kenny_Mayne's race call wasn't just two straight minutes of tears!
— Mark (@ShamIAmNot) January 17, 2016
Good thing Kenny's one-race gig didn't include him being the placing judge. https://t.co/WnGIDFUNaU
— Art Wilson (@Sham73) January 17, 2016
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