NEWS&VIEWS by Jacqueline Bennett

Posts from the “Sports” Category

“Riders Mount Your Horses” – Why is Kentucky Derby Day Special?

Posted on May 6, 2017

By Jacqueline Bennett   Even for those who do not typically follow horse races, the Kentucky Derby is an exception. First held in Louisville, Kentucky at Churchill Downs on May 17, 1875, it may well be the most storied Thoroughbred race in American History. The quality of the horses that compete in the Kentucky Derby is a major aspect of what makes it so special. It is not easy to obtain a berth in this race which is described as the longest running sports event in the United States. Aptly, the Kentucky Derby is characterized as “iconic.”    And, every horse has a story…   Today the 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby will take place. Which magnificent 3-year old will come away…

Tom Brady Tosses Out Ceremonial First Pitch at Red Sox 2015 Season Home Opener

Posted on April 14, 2015

Write-up by Jacqueline Bennett   Another chapter has been added to the storied history of Fenway Park.   What better way to launch the April 13, 2015 Red Sox season home opener at Fenway, “America’s oldest ballpark”, than to have New England Patriots Super Bowl MVP, Hall of Fame bound quarterback Tom Brady, toss out the ceremonial first pitch. The video, that can be viewed in the tweet below, is posted on and was shown on this morning’s NESN “Update”.   Brady caps pregame ceremonies with first pitch via @mlb — newsandviewsjb (@newsandviewsjb) April 14, 2015   Wearing a Rex Sox cap, Brady made the throw which turned out to be a grounder to the Sox’ David Ortiz. This occurred after…

Classy Farewell from NE Patriots Vince Wilfork & Salt in an Old Wound

Posted on March 6, 2015

Commentary by Jacqueline Bennett   Whenever a popular player from one of my favorite teams, who has not only performed well but with loyalty and integrity, is shown the door it feels like salt in an old wound for me. That being the devasting 11th hour trade of Ronnie Francis from the former National Hockey League Hartford Whalers.   Known to virtually everyone in Connecticut by his first name during his time with the Whale, “Ronnie” was traded on March 4, 1991. He was traded along with Ulf Samuelson and Grant Jennings to the Pittsburgh Penguins after Francis spent close to ten seasons with the Whalers, most of those as captain, reportedly scoring 264 goals, 557 assists and “setting nearly every offensive record in franchise history.” Rightfully so, he was beloved…

Sour Grapes Meant to Deflate Patriots AFC Championship?

Posted on January 22, 2015

Commentary By: Jacqueline Bennett   “… The officials do a great job of being sure everything is up-to-date. With all the procedures they take, I find it hard to believe that someone could take two bags of 12 balls and deflate them. I don’t see where you could go with this large bag of balls. Do you lock yourself in a room? It’s not very feasible.” Gil Brandt, former vice president for player personnel with the Dallas Cowboys and current analyst for NFL Media, as quoted January 20 in The New York Times.   I am a New England Patriots fan. Like most Pats fans I was on top of world after the AFC championship game victory over the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday, January 18, that…

Manchester Thanksgiving Day Road Race Seeks to Document Longtime Runners

Posted on November 24, 2014

Write-Up & Photo by Jacqueline Bennett One of New England’s premier sporting events is only three days away – the Thanksgiving Day Road Race, being held for the 78th year in Manchester, Connecticut. As of this morning online registration remained open with a total of 14,183 runners signed on to participate, according to their website. This year the road race committee wants to chronicle longtime runners and “is establishing a program to record and recognize the longevity of its perennial participants.” A longevity record database is slated to be posted to the road race website at some point down the road …. no pun intended. The committee is said to be looking for men who have run the race 45 times or more and…

NFL Player Chris Baker Promotes Literacy Foundation at the Legendary Bart’s Drive-In

Posted on July 15, 2014

Article & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett   When he was a youngster NFL player Chris Baker and his friends rode their bicycles to “that  hot dog place” just down the street from where he lived in Windsor, Connecticut. “That hot dog place” being the iconic Bart’s Drive-In Restaurant. On July 11, Baker was at Bart’s to promote the Chris Baker Foundation, a literacy foundation. He became the most recent among notable professional athletes and Hollywood celebrities whose presence at this Nutmeg state institution have added to its mystique since it opened more than sixty years ago. Much to the delight of customers and the staff of Bart’s, that shares a connected space with The Beanery and Bear’s Smokehouse BBQ,  Baker tried his hand…

Gallant Effort from Team USA in 2014 FIFA World Cup Soccer

Posted on July 2, 2014

Commentary by Jacqueline Bennett The last time I had sat captivated by a soccer match, I was wrapped in a heavy corduroy jacket sipping hot chocolate in 20 degree weather on campus in Storrs, Connecticut. It was late autumn, circa 1987-1991. At the time, I was a reporter for the Manchester Herald and I remember seeing one of the paper’s photographers, Patrick, on the sidelines shooting the game along with a host of other photogs. UCONN soccer was still riding its heyday of fan support after former men’s Head Coach Joe Morrone turned the sport into a Sunday afternoon religion throughout the state. The matches drew overflow crowds and – for a brief moment – UCONN soccer nearly usurped the popularity of collegiate…