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Blog - LEGENDS

Bob Ehalt sees a similarity between 2011 Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom and 2014 Derby contender Dance With Fate (Photos by Eclipse Sportswire).

History has an unfailing habit of repeating itself, especially in a sport with a long and rich tradition such as horse racing.

In one way or another, a champion of today can often be likened to a hero of the past. The tie might be tenuous at best, but it’s still a similarity.

Kentucky Derby winners offer an excellent example of this phenomenon. Since 3-year-olds follow a relatively narrow path to Churchill Downs on the first Saturday in May, there’s usually a little something in a horse from this year’s race that’s reminiscent of a past runner.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at this year’s starters and their doppelgangers from bygone days

2014 Horse

Past Derby winner

California Chrome

Big Brown

The skinny: Both were unknown at two but were so dominant at three that they went off as the betting favorites.

Wicked Strong

Pleasant Colony

The skinny: Both ran well in the Remsen, disappointed in Florida and then won the Wood Memorial.

Dance With Fate

Animal Kingdom

The skinny: Both won their final prep on a synthetic surface.

Vicar’s In Trouble

Grindstone

The skinny: Both won the Louisiana Derby.

Samraat

Funny Cide

The skinny: Both are New York state-breds who finished second in the Wood Memorial.

Danza

Sunny’s Halo

The skinny: Both won the Arkansas Derby.

Intense Holiday

Super Saver

The skinny: Both are trained by Todd Pletcher and finished second in their final Derby prep.

Wildcat Red

Thunder Gulch

The skinny: Both won the Fountain of Youth in a photo finish but lost in their final prep.

We Miss Artie

Animal Kingdom

The skinny: Both won the Spiral in their final prep.

Ride On Curlin

Giacomo

The skinny: Both were are longshots who were Grade 1-placed at two but lost their final three preps while finishing fourth or better.

Chitu

Mine That Bird

The skinny: Both ran in the Sunland Derby.

Tapiture

Super Saver

The skinny: Both won the Kentucky Jockey Club but lost their final two preps.

General a Rod

Go For Gin

The skinny: Both lost in the Fountain of Youth and Florida Derby.

Medal Count

Street Sense

The skinny: Both were second in the Blue Grass on Polytrack.

Candy Boy

Ferdinand

The skinny: Both won a Santa Anita stakes at three and then finished third in the Santa Anita Derby by 7 or more lengths and were ridden by jockeys older than 50.

Uncle Sigh

Count Turf

The skinny: Both finished off the board in the Wood Memorial.

Vinceremos

Real Quiet

The skinny: Both lost a 3-year-old prep by 20 or more lengths.

Harry’s Holiday

Charismatic

The skinny: Both ran in a maiden claiming race.

Commanding Curve

Giacomo

The skinny: Both had just one win entering the Derby.

Image Description

Bob Ehalt

Bob Ehalt has been an avid fan of Thoroughbred racing since that day in June of 1971 when he and his father walked from their Queens Village, N.Y., home to Belmont Park to see Canonero II fall short in his bid for the Triple Crown. A veteran sports writer and correspondent for Thoroughbred Times magazine, Bob has covered horse racing for more than 20 years and has won three awards in the Associated Press Sports Editors national writing contest for his coverage of the sport.

Now working at the New Haven Register in Connecticut, Bob has also owned Thoroughbreds since 1995 and was a member of the syndicate that raced Tale of the Cat. He also writes a racing blog for ESPNNewYork.com and is the co-founder of the New York Hot List handicapping service, which is offered at InterBets.com.

His NTRA.com blog received first-place honors in the 2008-09 Breeders' Cup Media Awards, winning in the initial year of competition in the Social Media category.  You can follow him on Twitter at @BobEhalt

 

Image Description

Bob Ehalt

Bob Ehalt has been an avid fan of Thoroughbred racing since that day in June of 1971 when he and his father walked from their Queens Village, N.Y., home to Belmont Park to see Canonero II fall short in his bid for the Triple Crown. A veteran sports writer and correspondent for Thoroughbred Times magazine, Bob has covered horse racing for more than 20 years and has won three awards in the Associated Press Sports Editors national writing contest for his coverage of the sport.

Now working at the New Haven Register in Connecticut, Bob has also owned Thoroughbreds since 1995 and was a member of the syndicate that raced Tale of the Cat. He also writes a racing blog for ESPNNewYork.com and is the co-founder of the New York Hot List handicapping service, which is offered at InterBets.com.

His NTRA.com blog received first-place honors in the 2008-09 Breeders' Cup Media Awards, winning in the initial year of competition in the Social Media category.  You can follow him on Twitter at @BobEhalt

 

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