Orb Delivers Kentucky Derby Glory

Orb Delivers Kentucky Derby Glory

Orb wins the 2013 Kentucky Derby.

Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt/The Horse

Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable's Orb stormed to the lead in the stretch of a sloppy Churchill Downs strip to win the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands. The homebred son of Malibu Moon covered the 1 1/4 miles in 2:02.89 and topped Golden Soul by 2 1/2 lengths.

The winning rider was Joel Rosario, the hottest rider in the world off a record-breaking Keeneland Race Course meet and a victory aboard Animal Kingdom in the Dubai World Cup sponsored by Emirates Airline.

Golden Soul rallied for the place spot, topping Revolutionary by a length. Normandy Invasion was a head back in fourth.

Orb delivered the first Kentucky Derby win for Hall of Fame trainer and Lexington native Shug McGaughey.

"It means everything to me," McGaughey. "I'm thrilled to death for the Phipps and Janney (families) and all the people involved with the horse."

McGaughey had sent out six runners in the Derby before this year. The pair of Pine Circle (sixth) and Vanlandingham (16th) were his first in 1984; Seeking the Gold was seventh in 1988; the favored entry of Easy Goer and Awe Inspiring ran second and third in 1989; and Saarland was 10th in 2002.

The pace was swift in the Derby. The Todd Pletcher-trained Palace Malice was the unexpected early leader, shooting immediately to the front and zipping through :22.57, :45.33, and 1:09.80 fractions under jockey Mike Smith.

As the pace wilted up front, Normandy Invasion made is way to the front in early stretch, but Orb was moving best of all and was clear and widest of all down the stretch. After a mile in 1:36.16, he collared the leader and drew clear of the field. Revolutionary, with Calvin Borel up, came up the rail for third.

Orb, the 5-1 favorite in the race, paid $12.80, $7.40, and $5.40. Golden Soul paid $38.60 and $19.40, and Revolutionary returned $5.40. The 16-4 exacta paid $981.60.

Normandy Invasion was followed by Mylute, Oxbow, Lines of Battle, Will Take Charge, Charming Kitten, Giant Finish,Overanalyze, Palace Malice, Java's War, Verrazano, Itsmyluckyday, Frac Daddy, Goldencents, Vyjack, and Falling Sky.

The Kentucky-bred winner is out of the Unbridled mare Lady Liberty.

Orb broke his maiden in his fourth try at 2 years old last November at Aqueduct Racetrack. He came into his own this winter in South Florida.

Orb won an allowance/optional claiming race Jan. 26 at nine furlongs. He then came from sixth to win the Besilu Stables Fountain of Youth Stakes and was ultra-impressive winning the Besilu Stables Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park March 30.

Four-for-four this year and the winner of five in a row, Orb has a 5-0-1 mark from eight starts and has earned $2,280,900.

The Kentucky-bred winner is the fourth foal out of the Unbridled mare Lady Liberty. Lady Liberty won four races in her career. She is out of the Cox's Ridge mare Mesabi Maiden, who won the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes in 1996 for Janney III and McGaughey. Mesabi Maiden also placed in the Monmouth Breeders' Cup Oaks. Mesabi Maiden is out of the stakes-winning Steel Maiden, a half sister to Private Terms, the beaten Derby favorite behind Winning Colors in 1988.

Private Terms and Steel Maiden are out of the Janney family's Laughter, a half sister to the legendary Ruffian and top sires Icecapade and Buckfinder.

Malibu Moon, a son of A.P. Indy--Macoumba, by Mr. Prospector, was bred by B. Wayne Hughes. A winner of one of two starts, Malibu Moon began his stud career at the Pons' family's Country Life Farm in Maryland and was later moved to Hughes' Spendthrift Farm near Lexington.

This year's Derby was worth $2,174,800, with $1,414,800 going to the winner. The runner-up earned $400,000, third-place $200,000, fourth-place $100,000, and the fifth-place finisher received $60,000.

Attendance at Churchill Downs on Derby day was reported as 151,616, the ninth-largest in the history of the race.

Originally published on BloodHorse.com.

About the Author

Evan Hammonds

Evan Hammonds is the Executive Editor for The Blood-Horse.

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