BY MATTHEW OSTROW
The commentary for the Breeders Cup was spot-on and even exceeded my expectations for the telecast. The team of Joe Tessitore, Randy Moss and Jerry Bailey did a great job setting the stage for the race as well as making you feel like you were at Church Hill Downs. The commentators made the event seem historical and classy like horse racing should be.
I am not a huge horse racing fan, but I tune in for the Triple Crown races. So, my knowledge for horse racing is very limited. That makes the job for the commentator more difficult because the majority of the audience must be informed of the basics of horse racing compared to an NFL game were most of the audience is very familiar with the sport. The commentators did a great job of informing you of how long the race is and what course conditions can do to affect the race.
The broadcast also had great personal stories about the jockeys. The biggest story was the jockey of Game on Dude, Chantal Sutherland. She was trying to become the first female jockey to win the Breeder’s Cup and the commentators did a great job framing the story for the audience.
Then came the race. If you have ever seen a horse race, you know the horses change place constantly and it is very hard to tell what is going on. The telecast did a great job helping the audience know what is going on by having a helpful graphic at the bottom showing who was in first, second and third. Along with the graphic, Tessitore added to the excitement and said the horses’ names with what place they were in and said who was winning, in order, quickly. For example, he would say, “Game on Dude, Game on Dude,” followed by, “Drosselmeyer, Drosselmeyer making a move, Drosselmeyer!”. That style of commentary made me more excited and kept me informed about the race.
At the end of the race, Drosselmeyer barely beat out Game on Dude and the jockeys turned out to have dated, which was a interesting fact that they provided. The post-game coverage was good, reporters on horse caught up to the winner and runners-up right after the race to get their reactions.
The broadcast for the Breeders Cup Classic did a great job at informing the audience about horse racing, making the race exciting and keeping its historical feel.