Epicenter represents Bowling Green in the Kentucky Derby – Reuters

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – It’s that time of year again in the Bluegrass State. The Kentucky Derby is ready for its 148th edition!

While Churchill Downs is over an hour away, the sport’s most exciting two minutes have deep ties to Bowling Green. Westwind Farm is located on Three Springs Road in Bowling Green and is home to one of this year’s race favorites, Epicenter.

“I mean, it’s something you always strive to have a horse in the derby, but it doesn’t happen too often,” Westwind Farm owner Mike Hill said.

Mike Hill bred Epicenter on his farm before selling the thoroughbred to Ron Winchell. Winchell also has deep ties to Bowling Green. He is co-owner of the city’s Mint Gaming Hall and the Kentucky Downs. Epicenter’s Bowling Green identity is huge for Winchell.

“You know, bringing the horse from Bowling Green and having our man-in-home facility that we opened in December,” Winchell said. “It’s just a great connection to you know, this area and the breeder and kind of, you know, at the time we bought them, I hadn’t realized it from Bowling Green. So, it It was kind of a nice little extra, especially right after the Mint plant opened in Bowling Green.

But what makes Epicenter so special?

“What made Epicenter stand out a bit was how we moved, you know, even at slow speeds,” Epicenter coach Steve Asmussen said. “He’s best described as a slinky. You know, he’s just an extremely fluid and complex mover.

“I knew he was special,” Hill said. “I mean, it’s beyond even dreaming of him being in the Derby, but I knew he was a really good horse. You know, one of the best we’ve bred. But he’s all the parts that are in the right place. It’s really balanced.

The 2019-born horse will be launched from third position and he will be the epicenter of Bowling Green’s attention this Saturday.

“A platoon of 20 horses makes it difficult. The best horse doesn’t always win, because there are a lot of traffic problems, but you know, we hope for the best.

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