Princess of Sylmar and Her Saratoga Court (Video)

Princess of Sylmar and Her Saratoga Court (Video)
Photo: Sue Kawczynski/Eclipse Sportswire

There are moments in life that serve as markers in which a person can longingly sigh and say, "I was there..." and recall the sights, sounds and feelings the day invokes. Such was July 20, 2013 for yours truly, Bada Bing. The opening weekend of Saratoga's 150th season was special enough, but the memories forged in meeting Princess of Sylmar, interviewing, spilling into the winner's circle and then attending her victory party with her gracious human connections turn through my mind like a fairy tale.

I mean we are taking about a princess and Saratoga, so story book magic is not out of place in the most mythical of race courses. Funny, I never even saw the Coaching Club American Oaks unfold - I was too busy filming the Stanco family as they unleashed joyous cheers throughout the entire stretch run that Princess of Sylmar turned into a never-in-doubt victorious red carpet romp. (Please click here to see that cheer-filled video, if you haven't already.)

Beyond a second straight amazing, come-from-behind win for Princess of Sylmar, I was left with images of beaming pride and shared joy of Ed Stanco, principal owner of King of Prussia Stable and breeder of Princess of Sylmar, his extended family and all of the Princess' partners as they basked in the rarest of feats - coming together to celebrate one victory, the Kentucky Oaks, and witnessing another in the process. 

To say that Ed Stanco and his family and friends are kind and generous is an understatement. Bob Murphy and I, nobodies representing Horse Racing Nation, were effortlessly accepted into their fold. Some may dismiss this as the fruits of victory, but in spending parts of morning, noon and night with the Stancos and King of Prussia Stable it was evident that good things do happen to good people.

And you, my loyal reader of this blog, will get to see what I mean in watching The Princess and Her Court Take on Saratoga. Enjoy.  

Tony Bada Bing began his lifelong quest of finding winners more than 35 years ago as a fifth grade student. This is when his grandfather first took him to the many Off Track Betting facilities sprinkled throughout Long Island, NY. While many kids his age were clamoring to hit the beach or an amusement park during summer vacation, Bada Bing was spending it in stuffy, smoked-filled rooms filled with retirees and reprobates listening to Marshall Cassidy on tape delay calling Saratoga.

This passion was further lit by his father, who took Bada Bing to East Boston's Suffolk Downs, only after Bada Bing learned to read the Racing Form. For most of his young adult life a summer rotation of NY OTB, Suffolk, and the now shuddered Rockingham Park in Salem, NH filled his betting days. 

Notable winners along the way: Willow Hour's and Runaway Groom's Travers wins as well as Derby winners Grindstone, Thunder Gulch (which he called in print the day before) and Super Saver. His latest quest is to hit the Kentucky Derby superfecta.

Bada Bing plays tournaments at Derby Wars, bets through several account wagering sites and has blogged about Thoroughbred racing for the past four years. He prefers the bigger meets of NYRA and California as well as seasonal meets of Gulfstream, Churchill and Oaklawn. He likes vertical, multirace wagers like Pick 4s.

He has produced several Horse Racing Nation videos, in addition to blogging. He can be found at Twitter @tonycbadabing. While away from the track Bada Bing enjoys time with his wife, who tolerates and supports his passion, and his two children.


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