Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Legend of Jimmy The Greek

"My favorite racetrack is the track closest to where I am at the time"-Jimmy The Greek

ESPN
may screw up coverage of Horse racing but their documentary series "30 for 30" is pretty good. They have run 6 documentary films so far with the last one premiering last Tuesday 11/10/09 titled "The Legend of Jimmy The Greek" . You may only remember Jimmy "The Greek" Snyder from his firing in 1988 by CBS for making racially insensitive remarks, but like all tragic figures, there was much more substance to the man.

I can't think of anyone more influential in the public acceptance of gambling. It was Jimmy that openly discussed sports gambling on network television. There are great behind the scenes information about the "NFL Today" show, which featured Jimmy from 1976-1988. This show ruled the pre-cable television era and it dominated the ratings every Sunday.

Jimmy clearly loved horse racing and there are great tidbits in the film which the horseplayer & racing fans will enjoy, including funny quotes from Jimmy and great shots of Hialeah Park racetrack.

This documentary shows the good side of Jimmy The Greek as well as the bad side. The film is well done on its storytelling. It's worth catching - here is where you can catch a replay:

11/20/09 1 am on ESPN2

11/29/09 9 pm on ESPN Classic

12/25/09 9 pm on ESPN Classic



3 comments:

Power Cap said...

Some of the redboarded $100K horseracing scores seemed questionable. In the end the guy ended up in the gutter. The main thing I took out of this was to make sure handicapping remains a recreational activity. The praise, the stardom and the fame killed Dimetrios Synodinos.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the heads up about episode of Jimmy....I remember him at Saratoga - dragging sercuity guys up to the mutual windows--if he won or not--it wouldnn't look so good if he didn't make an appearance at the windows after each race....

Anonymous said...

I also remember the image of Jimmy going the the $100 windows in the shed at Saratoga. Wearing a jogging suit with necklaces and rings.