Larry Collmus, the voice of the Triple Crown and the Breeders’ Cup, will become the announcer at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club this summer, stepping in for long-time announcer Trevor Denman, track officials announced Wednesday.
Collmus, with 35 years of race calling experience, will replace Denman for the summer season, after Denman recently told Del Mar officials that he and his wife Robin did not wish to travel away from their Minnesota farm in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Denman has been the racetrack’s caller for the past 36 years.
“When Trevor told us of his situation, we naturally had to respect what he was feeling,” said Josh Rubinstein, Del Mar Thoroughbred Club’s president and COO. “We immediately worked up a short list of possible replacements and Larry was the man we zeroed in on. Happily, he said he was available and would be delighted to call our meet. We’re very pleased to be able to have him be the guy in our booth when we’re off and running on July 10.”
Collmus, 53, called his first race at the age of 18 at Bowie Race Course in Maryland and has manned the mic at various racetracks from California’s Golden Gate Fields to New York, with additional tours at such noteworthy racing venues as Gulfstream Park, Churchill Downs and Monmouth Park.
Since 2011, the native of Baltimore has taken on the role of race caller for the Triple Crown series and the championship Breeders’ Cup races on NBC. In fact, he’ll be calling the race on Saturday when the Belmont Stakes in New York does a reversal of its usual role and becomes the first leg of this year’s Triple Crown.
Collmus was the man who got to tell a national audience about the Triple Crown heroics of American Pharoah in 2015 after 37 years without a Triple Crown winner. And just three years later he got to shout out yet another “Triple” when the undefeated colt Justify earned a Triple Crown en route to his Horse of the Year honors.
“It is an unexpected but welcome thrill to be joining the great team at Del Mar this summer,” Collmus said. “I’m very excited to be calling the races at such an amazing and iconic venue for the sport.”
Although Collmus will be making his Del Mar seasonal debut, he called the Breeders’ Cup races at Del Mar on November 3 and 4, 2017.
Denman, who has called every race at Del Mar since taking over for Harry Henson in 1984, told Del Mar officials he would be returning to the track for its fall season scheduled from October 31 to November 29.
–City News Service