"Upset" in horseracing

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Thu Nov 14 19:10:17 UTC 2002

OK, so this all leaves me with the question with which I believe I started
the original thread some time ago:  If the term "upset" meaning an
unexpected victory does not derive from the Man o' War loss, isn't it
remarkable that a horse named Upset pulled off the biggest, or one of the
biggest upsets of all time?  Even if the owner chose the name because he
had some dreams of the horse someday doing something terrific, what are
the chances that the horse would ever be in the position to pull off an
historic win, or that the horse would be good enough to pull off the win
but not so good as to make it not an upset?

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                             Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and     YALE DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS
  Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press,
Yale Law School                             forthcoming
e-mail: fred.shapiro at yale.edu               http://quotationdictionary.com

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