Thursday, February 27, 2014

Mine That Bird

 On May 10, 2006, a small bay colt was born in Kentucky out of Mining My Own, with the Birdstone being the sire. As a yearling, Mine That Bird was sold to a Canadian horse trainer, David Cotey, for $9,500 and put into training in Canada. He had a nasty temperament at first, so they gelded him not long after he went into training.

 Mine That Bird began his racing career in Canada, winning four of six races, including the Silver Deputy Stakes, the Swynford Stakes, and the Grey Stakes, with jockey Constant Montpellier riding the gelding for the first two races and Chantal Sutherland aboard for the last four. By the end of his two-year-old season, he had become Cananda's Champion Two-year-old Male Horse of 2008.

 After his successful first racing season, Mine That Bird was sold for $400,000 to a ranch in New Mexico and was put under the trainer Bennie "Chip" Woolley with the jockey Calvin Borel. He arrived just in time for the 2008 Breeders' Cup Juvenile, but finished last among twelve starters.

 He didn't race again until 2009, during his three-year-old season. The season didn't begin with a any wins, starting with Mine That Bird finishing second in the Borderland Derby on February 28, then fourth in the Sunland Derby on March 29. Despite the losses, Mine That Bird qualified for the Kentucky Derby, which would be his first race that year outside of New Mexico. He arrived at the as an underdog, his odds being 50-1.

Mine That Bird in the Kentucky Derby.
 The night before the big race, rain poured down, leaving the track muddy and sloppy. Mine That Bird had trouble at the starting gate that race, leaving him eight lengths behind everyone else. By the time the rest of the pack was travelling down the backstretch, it seemed impossible for Mine That Bird to catch up. Calvin Borel urged the gelding onward, travelling along the inside rail to save time and distance. When Mine That Bird caught up with the rest of the pack, he zoomed passed them from the inside, taking the lead near the homestretch. Remarkably, he won by six lengths against horses whose odds were much better than his.

 After his amazing performance in Kentucky, which many people considered a fluke, Mine That Bird entered the Preakness Stakes under the jockey Mike Smith since Calvin would be riding Rachel Alexandra. Mine That Bird again started out slow and came from behind to pass the rest of the pack, but he was unable to catch up with Rachel Alexandra. He finished second behind her by only a length.

 Next, he entered the Belmont Stakes and was once again ridden by Calvin Borel. He came from behind, catching up with Dunkirk and Charitable Man near the end, but ended up third to Summer Bird and Dunkirk.

 He then came third in the West Virginia Derby and ninth in the Breeders' Cup Classic, ending his career. Afterward, he was nominated as New Mexico's 2009 Horse of the Year.


  1. If you haven't already you should watch the reality show on netflix called "Jockeys"

    1. I haven't heard of that one but will be something to check out.


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