In many ways, this year's Kentucky Derby, just 11 days away, will be a horse of a different color.
The actual two minutes of racing should not be a departure from the past. There will be a large field. The start will be a cavalry charge. The best horse may or may not win, depending on jockey pilot success in finding a crack in the usual Great Wall of Churchill that the horses create as they turn for home.
And, within 30 seconds of the winner's crossing the finish line, the horse's connections will be asked about winning a Triple Crown.Indeed, the Derby is the happiest time of the year for racing.
But then, this year's especially needs to be, because much in the sport leading up to it hasn't been a belly laugh.