Posts Tagged ‘Mine That Bird’

WinStar Farm Visit (Part I): Dullahan and the Studs

We recently visited WinStar Farm in Versailles, KY. This is my first in a 3-part blog series. In this edition, I will look at the WinStar stallions.

Dullahan

RIP Dullahan

Part II takes a look at the horses in the Training Barn. In Part III, I will take a behind the scenes look at WinStar.

Before discussing the sires, I have to mention Dullahan.

Unfortunately, we were one of the last people to see Dullahan at WinStar. We saw him last Wednesday and were shocked to hear that he had to be put down due to colic less than four days later.

I respect all of these amazing athletes, even when they cost me money. I needed Take charge Indy (also at WinStar) to finish 4th to cash my 2011 BC Juvenile superfecta, but along came Dullahan to nip me on the wire.

I had no idea that Dullahan was rehabbing at WinStar and was pleasantly surprised to see him last week. He was a magnificent looking animal and will be missed.

Colonel john

Photos by Stacy Edwards

The WinStar stallions read like a who’s who of my losing Derby selections, beginning with Colonel John. Don’t worry big guy, you redeemed yourself in the Travers!

Colonel John is off to a fast start at stud. He could run on anything and the versatile sort seems to be passing that valuable trait to his offspring.

Oh, look who’s right across from Colonel John. It’s my Kentucky Derby 2008 losing pick Pioneerof The Nile. The latter is a feisty one and reportedly tried to bite someone recently. Don’t turn your back on this one! He seemed a bit keyed up on Wednesday and is ready for the upcoming breeding season.

Pioneerof The Nile was dusted by one of the most unlikely Derby winners of all time, Mine That Bird. Earlier this year, it was fun to see Mine That Bird frolic with energetic miniature horse Winston at the Kentucky Derby Museum at Churchill Downs.

Distorted Humor

Distorted Humor

Distorted Humor put WinStar on the map,  siring the likes of Drosselmeyer, Funny Cide, and Flower Alley.

Distorted Humor laid the foundation and paved the way for 2-time Breeders’ Cup Classic hero Tiznow, who might be the most popular stallion on the magnificent grounds.  Colonel John’s papa is also responsible for Well Armed, Tizway, and fellow WinStar stud Gemologist.

Tiznow

Tiznow

Tiznow beat me in the 2001 BC Classic. I was at Belmont Park that day, and the tragic memories of 911 were fresh in everyone’s mind. In a surreal world, snipers were perched on the roof, and the crowd got lost in the moment when Tiznow turned back Sakhee to win one for America.

Other stallions at WinStar that we got to spend some time with include Bellamy Road, Bodemeister, Gemologist, Hold Me Back, Kodiak Kowboy, Maimonides, Speightstown, Spring at Last, Street Hero, Super Saver, and U.S. Ranger.

We were told that Bodemeister does not care about his appearance – typical dude! Maimondes is very sweet and and owns an outstanding pedigree but is the forgotten sire standing for a mere $2,500.

Thank you to WinStar for allowing us to visit and for taking us behind the scenes. If you would like to learn more about the WinStar StableMates program, check out their website.

If you would like to see more of Stacy’s WinStar photos, please visit her Kentucky horse racing photos page, The Runaway Horse.

Mine That Bird Returns to Churchill Downs

Mine That Bird, improbable 50-1 winner of the 2009 Kentucky Derby under jockey Calvin Borel, returned to the scene of his greatest triumph on Monday morning. No, he is not coming out of retirement. The 7-year-old gelding is a temporary resident of the Kentucky Derby Museum.

Mine That Bird

He arrived at Churchill Downs shortly after 11am on Monday with trainer Chip Wooley and owners Mark Allen & Leonard Blach. The press and fans were out in full force to welcome the rags to riches gelding from Roswell, New Mexico.

Contrary to popular belief, Mine That Bird was not a one hit wonder. He won 5 of 18 career starts and banked more than $2.2 million. In addition to dusting my top choice Pioneerof the Nile in the Kentucky Derby,  he won the Silver Deputy Stakes, Swynford Stakes, and G3 Grey Stakes at Woodbine as a juvenile, and finished 2nd in the Borderland Derby, 2nd in the G1 Preakness, 3rd in the G1 Belmont Stakes, and 3rd in the G2 Virginia Derby as a sophomore. He failed to hit the board in his final six career starts and retired in 2010 after finishing 10th in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Mile.

If you would like to visit Mine That Bird, you can see him free of charge at Churchill’s Kentucky Derby Museum in the outdoor paddock behind the gift shop through the fourth of July. He is stabled with his new miniature horse buddy, Winston.

For more on our fun day with Mine That Bird & Winston at Churchill Downs, please visit Stacy’s Kentucky horse racing photos page.

Belmont Stakes 2012 Bloodlines: Dullahan

Which horse has the best pedigree to handle twelve furlongs in the final leg of the Triple Crown on Saturday, June 9 at Belmont Park? My Belmont Stakes alphabetical list continues with Dullahan.

Dullahan

Can Dullahan win away from Keeneland? – photo by Eclipse Sportswire

Dullahan’s sire Even The Score raced 29 times from 2001-04. He won the G2 Mervyn LeRoy and G2 Californian before finishing 3rd in the G1 Hollywood Gold Cup to end his career in 2004. He banked more than $751k in his career. His current stud fee is $10k and in addition to Dullahan he is also responsible for multiple grade one winner Take The Points.

Even The Score’s sire Unbridled’s Song (by Unbridled) earned more than a cool million on the racetrack and was on the Triple Crown trail in 1996. The ’95 BC Juvenile hero won the G1 Florida Derby and G2 Wood Memorial before finishing 5th as the favorite in the ’96 Derby.  He is responsible for more than 90 stakes winners including Unrivaled Belle, Midshipman, and Mission Impazible.

Read the rest of this post at HorseRacingNation.com.