Names are snapped up to reflect photo finish

Presidential horse race to gallop on through likes of Don't Countess Out

Sports Plus

January 21, 2001|By Andy Knobel | Andy Knobel,SUN STAFF

The presidential election is finally over, but as Janet Patton writes in the Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader, its namesakes will be running for years.

The Jockey Club, which hands out names for thoroughbreds, has recently approved dozens of election-related ones, including:

All Four Chads, Chad, Chadsanddimples, Count The Chads, Dangling Chad, Don't Countess Out, Electoral College, Florida Recount, No More Chads, Palm Beach Ballot and Win for Chad.

Her favorite: Tooclosetocall, which was the Herald-Leader headline in its final post-Election Day edition.

No one has requested President Bush's media nickname of "Dubya."

One of the recently granted requests, according to John Cooney, spokesman for the Jockey Club's registrar's office in Lexington, comes close:

Gee Dubya.

There was already a Dubya Dubya (a 1973 gelding) and a Dub Yu (a 1993 gelding), and there have been several George W.s.

After 10 years, names can become available again if the horses aren't famous or if they haven't been used in breeding.

The Jockey Club just released more than 46,000 names for reuse, including - interestingly enough - Bush.

A lot of geldings' names get recycled. That explains the 1939, 1962, 1984 and 1998 versions of George W.

The most recent George W. is now a 3-year-old, but unless he gets faster in a hurry, he's unlikely to make a run for the roses. He left the starting gate four times as a 2-year-old, mostly in New Mexico, with total earnings of $640.

In case you're curious, there is a Gore out there, but he hasn't excelled either.

Although he's the offspring of A. P. Indy and sold for $350,000 at Saratoga as a yearling, the 5-year-old has won only one race and $26,040 in six starts in New York.

So, just how many foals have been given election-related names?

Says Janice Towles, the Jockey Club's manager of registration services:

"We're still counting them!"

Horsefeathers

Say your idea of a major event isn't a presidential election but rather a Super Bowl.

And say you want to name your horse after a certain pro football team from Baltimore.

Here are some names already taken: Raven, Ravena, Raven Belle, Raven Blaze, Raven Bold, Ravenbrook, Raven Factor, Raven Feather, Raven Fest, Ravenhawk, Raven Hill, Raven King, Raven Lane, Raven Master, Raven Norwegian, Rave Notice, Ravenous, Raven Raven, Raven Red, Raven Review, Raven Riot, Raven Rotten, Raven Ruhl, Raven Ruken, Raven Run, Raven Runner, Raven's Baguette, Raven's Bride, Ravenscourt and Ravenscraig.

You also couldn't use Sharpe, Lucky Sharpe or Speedy Sharpe Depot.

Or Baltimore Birdie, Baltimore Bound, Baltimorebudweiser, Baltimore Dancer, Baltimore Express, Baltimore Gray or Baltimore Joe.

The good news? These names were just recently freed for future use: Raven Gem, Raven Marie, Raven Nevermore, Ravens Child and Raven's Ridge. As were Sharpe as Iron, Sharper Edge, Sharper Guy and Sharper Than Ever.

Of course, of course

The real name of television's Mr. Ed, the talking horse, was Bamboo Harvester.

One man, one vote

The Bush-Gore race isn't the only election that just ended.

Last week, the returns came in on journeyman pitcher Jim Deshaies' playful Internet bid to get one vote - out of 511 ballots cast - for the Baseball Hall of Fame.

On Tuesday, Deshaies, known more for hanging curveballs than hanging chads, basked in the glow of victory.

"As you know by now, this campaign fell 386 votes shy of reaching the Hall, but the fact that we reached our stated goal is a testament to the validity of our effort, as well as to the wisdom of never setting one's sights too high," said Deshaies, a noted cutup.

"Today we acknowledge the will of the voters and accept their mandate. I have called the winners [Dave Winfield and Kirby Puckett] and left a message of congratulations, but they have yet to call back."

Perhaps you'll name a horse after Deshaies.

Unfortunately, Vote Getter already is taken.

Compiled from wire reports and Web sites.

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