Hawley still has what it takes
Back in the saddle at age 59, Sandy Hawley led all the way aboard Tribal Chief to earn his 6,450th career victory in the Living Legends race at Santa Anita on Saturday.
Hawley and seven other Hall of Fame jockeys came out of retirement for the race that officially counted in their career totals and was specially approved for legalized parimutuel wagering.
The riders’ combined career earnings totaled more than $1.5 billion from 49,164 victories. None of their mounts Saturday came close to matching the quality of the horses they rode to numerous Triple Crown wins over the years.
But the race was more about getting a chance to return to their previous lives for a brief time.
“It was like an ‘E’ ride ticket at Disneyland back in the day,” said Gary Stevens, who like Jerry Bailey, now works as a TV racing commentator.
Hawley and Tribal Chief took the lead out of the gate and went on to a 6 1/2 -length victory in the 7-furlong race. Bailey was second, Stevens third, Pat Day fourth, Julie Krone fifth, Jacinto Vasquez sixth, Chris McCarron seventh and Angel Cordero Jr. last.
We always knew he was fast
Everyone knows Reggie Bush has speed, but did you know he now has a speedometer?
During its broadcast of the Oct. 6 game between New Orleans and Minnesota, ESPN used some nifty optical- tracking technology to show the Saints star reached a top speed of 22 mph on one of his two punt returns for touchdowns.
If you don’t think 22 mph sounds that fast, consider this: Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt averaged 23.07 mph over 100 meters when he took the gold medal with his blistering 9.69-second performance in the Olympics. That’s according to EliteFeet.com, which also translated the times of star runners Maurice Greene (21.0 mph in the indoor 60 meters), Michael Johnson (20.71 in the 400), Florence Griffith Joyner (21.32 in the 100), among others.
Yes, those speeds are averages over the distance, as opposed to Bush’s top speed at a given point.
But those runners also weren’t carrying a football and saddled with a helmet and pads.