Turns out California Chrome was the favorite for a reason. He ran a good race today, despite having never run over the Churchill Downs track.
California Chrome was a sentimental favorite as well as a fast one. Owned by a stable called DAP — it stands for “dumb ass partners” after they were called ridiculed for their decision to get into the racing game and buying their first horse, California Chrome’s dam, an $8000 claimer who won only one race and breeding her to a stallion standing for just $2,500. To this day, their silks feature a jackass on the back.
But now their investment has more than paid for itself and their David and Goliath story has captured the heart of the nation.
But it doesn’t end there. California Chrome was the first Derby entry for 77-year old trainer Art Sherman, whose only other Churchill Downs appearance was as an exercise rider for Derby winner Swaps in 1955. He is now the oldest trainer to have won the Derby.
California Chrome is only the fourth California-bred to win the Kentucky Derby and the first since Decidedly in 1962.