Description: The 141st running of the Kentucky Derby was run May 2, 2015 at Churchill Downs. 170K fans packed the historic race track under sunny skies. The track was fast and the turf was firm. American Pharoah (KY) B , C, foaled February 2, 2012 (Pioneerof the Nile - Littleprincessemma, by Yankee Gentleman) broke alertly from his outside #18 post. Regular rider Victor Espinoza sent him along the outside of front runners Dortmund and Firing Line down the stretch the first time and around the Clubhouse turn. Carpe Diem raced along the rail in the 4thd spot as the field turned up the back stretch. Firing Line kept moderate pressure on Dortmund while America Pharoah measured that pair as they went into the far turn. Dortmund couldn't keep up with Firing Line midway around the turn and American Pharoah chased after Firing Line, both going extremely wide, as they entered the stretch. Frosted and Danzig Moon were making up ground as Firing Line and American Pharoah battled for the lead, however, American Pharoah went on past nearing the 1/16th marker and went on with it to win by 1 length over firing line Dortmund held on well for the show, 2 lengths further back holding off Frosted by a neck. Danzig Moon was another 3 lengths back in 5th. American Pharoah has reeled off 5 in a row. His domination started in the 7 furlong $200K Grade I Del Mar Futurity September 3, 2014. He went wire to wire, winning by 4 3/4 lengths. On September 27 American Pharoah traveled to Santa Anita for the 8.5 furlong $300K Grade I Frontrunner Stakes. He went from flag fall to finish on the lead to win by 3 1/4 lengths. These two victories earned American Pharoah the Outstanding Two Year Old Male Eclipse Award for 2014. He was given some time off and resurfaced in the 8.5 furlong $750K Grade II Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park March 14, 2015. He again went wire to wire over a sloppy track to win by 6 1/4 lengths. American Pharoah came back to win the 9 furlong $1 million Grade I Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park. He tracked the pace set by Bridget's Big Luvy then blew by him to draw out by 5 lengths down the stretch as Far Right running late. American Pharoah was coasting home at that point and won by 3 lengths. Victor Espinoza has been American Pharoah's rider since his debut MSW when he finished 5th with Martin Garcia aboard at Del Mar August 9, 2014. American Pharoah is 5-0-0 from 6 starts and he has earned $2,830,300. He is a homebred of Zayat Stables and is being trained by Bob Baffert. American Pharoah gave Zayat Stables their first Kentucky Derby win.
Firing Line (KY) B , C, foaled January 19, 2012 ( Line of David - Sister Girl Blues, by Hold for Gold) began his career with a second place finish to Alright Alright, coming from far back to miss by a 1/2 length in the 6 furlong MSW at Santa Anita October 25, 2014 under jockey Mike Smith. He and Mike Smith came back to win a 6.5 furlong MSW at Del Mar November 30th, coming off the pace to win by 4 1/4 lengths. On December 20th, Firing Line battled with Mr. Z to the top of the stretch, took the lead but couldn't hold off Dortmund, he lost by a head under jockey Rafael Bejarano in the 8.5 furlong $500K Grade I Los Alamitos Futurity at Los Alamitos. Firing Line came back in the 8.5 furlong $150K Grade III Robert B. Lewis Stakes at Santa Anita February 7th, 2015. He sat back under jockey Gary Stevens and came on to battle Dortmund at the 3/4 pole. Those two went at it from there with Dortmund winning it by a head. The others were 21 1/2 lengths out of it. Firing Line got into the Kentucky Derby field with the 50 points he earned with his commanding victory in the 9 furlong $800K Grade III Sunland Derby at Sunland Park March 22nd. He battled with Why Two to the 3/4 pole and then he and jockey Gary Stevens went on to win by 14 1/4 lengths. Firing Line is 2-4-0 from 6 starts and he has earned $974,800. He was bred by Clearsky Farms and he is owned by Arnold Zetcher. He is being trained by Simon Callaghan.
Dortmund (KY) CH , C, foaled February 7, 2012 (Big Brown - Our Josephina, by Tale of the Cat) came into the Kentucky Derby undefeated with 6 wins. Jockey Martin Garcia has been aboard for all of his races. Dortmund won his first out, a 6.5 furlong MSW event at Santa Anita November 2, 2014, coming from off the pace to win by 4 3/4 lengths. He traveled to Churchill Downs November 29th to win an AOC (no tag), coming off the pace to win by 7 3/4 lengths. Dortmund traveled back to California December 20th to win the 8.5 furlong $500K Grade I Los Alamitos Futurity at Los Alamitos. He sat slightly of the pace, engaged Firing Line at the 3/4 pole and those two went down to the wire, Dortmund winning it by a head. He then went to Santa Anita for the 8.5 furlong $150K Grade III Robert B. Lewis Stakes February 7th, 2015 where he and Firing Line again hooked up for six furlongs, Dortmund won it by a head while the others were 21 1/2 lengths further back. On March 7th Dortmund went wire to wire in winning the 8.5 furlong $400K Grade II San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita by 1 1/4 lengths. On April 4th, Dortmund won the 9 furlong $1 million Grade I Santa Anita Oaks wire to wire to win by 4 1/4 lengths. Dortmund is 6-0-1 from 7 starts and he has earned $1,489,400. He was bred by Emilie Gerlinde Fojan, owned by Kaleem Shah, and is being trained by Bob Baffert.
Drawing by Daily Racing Funnies ®.
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