This past weekend included the fourth of May, which is generally considered to be Star Wars day to the geek kingdom. To those not hip to ‘Wars, you may be wondering why there’s a connection between an arbitrary date and an epic saga loved my many.  To those people, “May the fourth be with you.”

You pickin’ up what I’m puttin’ down?  Excellent.

May 4th was also a big day in Louisville, Kentucky with the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby.  I lived in Louisville for a few years when I was a kid, and derby time was always fun – not only on race day and every having fun at parties but the weeklong festival that led up to it.  One of my favorite parts of the derby (and all the other races that are run at Churchill Downs) is the nutty and sometimes outright ridiculous names of the horses.  A horse named Orb won the whole thing this year, but was followed by Golden Soul and Palace Malice.  Other horses had some great names too, like Normandy Invasion, Overanalyze and Will Take Charge.

So given that these two days coincide, I decided to come up with names for horses throughout the day that could potentially run in a Star Wars themed Kentucky Derby.  You know, just for fun.  Eventually some other people started playing along, giving us a huge stable of named horses.  Since there were 20 horses in the race this year, I picked my favorite 20 for the Star Wars Derby (in no particular order, and you can see the whole list on twitter using the hashtag #starwarsderby).  They’ll be loading into the gate as follows:

  • Hell Hoth No Fury
  • 12 Parsecs to Kessel
  • Alderaan Places
  • Ackbar’s Warning
  • Gone Baby Qui-Gon
  • Dr. Kyle and Mr. Katarn
  • Biggs’ Mustache Comb
  • Lando Milk and Honey
  • AT-AT The Wire
  • Buns of Steel
  • This Is Not The Horse You’re Looking For
  • The Phantom Mare
  • Adventure and Excitement
  • Lando’s Triple Cross
  • Don’t Tell Me The Odds 
  • Disturbing Lack of Faith
  • Wedge Can’t Hang
  • I Know
  • Oo Tee Dee
  • May the Horse Be With You
  • He’s My Brother
  • Star Orb A New Hope
  • Lando’s Colt 45
And they’re off!  Hell Hoth No Fury charges ahead of the field out of the gate followed by 12 Parsecs to Kessel with a good run, The Phantom Mare running almost unseen moving towards the inside rail.  This is not the Horse your Looking For trying to make a move to the outside, looking for Lando Milk and Honey and Alderaan Places in the middle of the pack.  Coming up on the turn Oo Tee Dee happily squeals his way into the inside, leaving Don’t Tell Me the Odds and Biggs’ Mustache Comb sifting through slings of mud.  On the backstretch is He’s My Brother side by side with Buns of Steel, catching up to Hell Hoth No Fury who is still ahead by 2 lengths.  Ackbar’s Warning staying cautiously steady towards the middle, Gone Baby Qui-Gon and Dr. Kyle and Mr. Katarn split to the outside.  Wedge Can’t Hang looks to be losing his steam, overtaken by Star Orb A New Hope who squarely takes 4th position in the series.  Approaching the turn I Know turns on the juice, leaving Adventure and Excitement in his wake, sluggish like he just came out of a Carbonite bath.  May the Horse Be With You tries to make a move and Lando’s Colt 45 takes a shot but gets sloppy and blows the turn wide to the outside.  Lando’s Triple Cross takes advantage of the situation and finishes the turn at number 5 ahead of Disturbing Lack of Faith coming to the home stretch, AND DOWN THE STRETCH THEY COME!  AT-AT The Wire charges ahead on the outside against Hell Hoth No Fury, closing to within one length.  AT-AT The Wire and Hell Hoth No Fury are neck and neck, but what’s this?  Ackbar’s Warning goes to the whip and makes a charge, speeding to the front of the pack!  It was a trap!  It was a trap!  Ackbar’s Warning on the straight and narrow cutting between AT-AT The Wire and Hell Hoth No Fury, closing the gap at a good clip, overtaking them before the line and Ackbar’s Warning takes the race!  Ackbar’s Warning wins, with Hell Hoth No Fury with the Place and AT-AT The Line for Show.

Phew, what an exciting race – see you kids when this happens again in 2019.

thanks to the folks that participated: @GreyAreaPodcast, @BigMikeyOcho, @neophiyte, @Mitzula, @TheRoyLRumble and @armstrongda

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Author and creator of Technical Fowl. IT/Tech hero. Jiu Jitsu purple belt. Enjoying the venn diagram intersection of tech, gaming, business, and politics.

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