Jenny Kellner is an award-winning journalist and educator who has written about horse racing for more than 20 years. She has been a media specialist with NYRA for the past four years.
So, in one corner you have Preakness runner-up First Dude, who indeed is named after the First Dude himself, Todd Palin.First Dude Palin is a four-time winner of the Iron Dog competition, a 1,971 mile (!) snowmobile race in Alaska. Palin is known as a superb navigator in the snowy wilderness, and we trust this means his namesake will have no trouble navigating “The Big Sandy.”
And in the other corner you have Lone Star Derby winner Game On Dude, simply referred to around the barn as “The Dude,” famously played by Jeff Bridges in “The Big Lebowski.”
Not surprisingly, this has led some people to starting calling the Belmont Stakes the “Battle of the Dudes.”
But most of these people aren’t from around here, and they are forgetting something very very important. (And no, it’s not where they left their car).
Seriously, in New York, there is only ONE dude.
Go on. Make his day.