Sunday, May 07, 2006

Something's Missing at the Kentucky Derby

In case you missed it, yesterday's Kentucky Derby was won in convincing fashion by a horse named Barbaro. I'm not a huge horse racing fan, but I like watching the Derby and the other Triple Crown races. Unfortunately, ever since NBC got the TV rights to the Derby, my favorite part of the race has been missing.

I'm talking about announcer Dave Johnson, and his signature "Down the stretch they come!" call at the Derby. Nothing captures the excitement of the Kentucky Derby quite like the sound of Johnson's voice as the horses gallop towards the finish line, but he works for ABC and ESPN, so we don't get to hear from him anymore.

Anyway, being the intrepid Internet explorer that I am, I did manage to find a sound bite of Dave Johnson's call. So if you need a fix, here it is.


jimbo said...


Good lord, you're right on the money about Dave Johnson. I pretty much only watch horse racing during the Triple Crown races, but the last couple of years I've turned down the sound just so I could hear Dave Johnson on the radio. I thought I was the only one out there wishing they would put him back on the air.

If NBC can screw up something so easy, like putting the Keith Jackson of horse racing on on the air for the Derby, makes you wonder how back Sunday Night Football is going to be.

Chuck from Maine said...


I have to agree. I'm not a really big horse racing fan. I do watch the entire Kentucky Derby. But, it's the call by Dave Johnson that really sells it. I watched it last year and there just isn't any magic in it anymore. For me, hearing "Down the stretch they come!" means that Spring is finally here. Michael Bougher has his "Let's get ready to rumble!" The Kentucky Derby has...or should I say had Dave Johnson. As far as I'm concerned it should have been a package deal.