Thursday, April 30, 2009

A bittersweet tale of Chocolate + Roses

OK, I am officially declaring my Derby choice ~ the delectably delicious CHOCOLATE CANDY. The reasoning ... the Derby is presented by Yum! Brands and we all know Chocolate Candy is yummy! He is out of a mare by Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew, and his 2nd dam sired by Alydar is a half-sister to Triple Crown winner Affirmed. He is owned by a really cool lady, business guru Jenny Craig and and most importantly he is the baby of a real modern day love story ...

Bred by Sid & Jenny Craig, Chocolate Candy's current success is particularly poignant as the colt is by one of the Craigs' top runners, Candy Ride (Arg), who captured the 2003 Pacific Classic (G1) and retired undefeated. Sid Craig loved horse racing ---- he died last summer during the racing season at the Del Mar racetrack, his favorite time of year ---- and the one thing he wanted to do most in the game was win the first leg of the sport's Triple Crown races.

"We saw the movie 'The Bucket List' together," Jenny Craig said, "and afterwards I asked him if there was anything he hadn't done that he really would like to do, and he said, 'Yes. Win the Kentucky Derby.'

This isn't the Craigs' first foray into the Kentucky Derby; they have owned three previous Derby entries. The couple enjoyed a unique Derby experience in 1992 when Jenny purchased English Group 1 star Dr Devious (Ire) for $2.5 million for her husband's 60th birthday, with a view toward winning the Kentucky Derby (G1). Unfortunately, he finished seventh in the Run for the Roses, but he returned to England to capture the Epsom Derby (Eng-G1).

In her 2004 autobiography, “The Jenny Craig Story: How One Woman Changes Millions of Lives,” Jenny offered the following portrait of her husband: “Sid … has the charisma of a Jack Kennedy, the intelligence of an Alan Greenspan, the creative mind of a Steven Spielberg, and the humor of a Jackie Mason, along with the good looks of a Clark Gable.”

To date, CHOCOLATE CANDY is Craig's best contender to capture the roses, "I have a lot of people that are pulling for Chocolate Candy to win. If that means anything, then we have a good shot. This has been a very emotional ride. It's bittersweet because I'm thrilled we're getting the opportunity to run in the Derby, but I truly wish Sid was here... It was his dream."

Source: North Country Times &


UR new crop of foals carries our own rosey dreams for a Derby win too. This year's colts are rich with the blood of many Derby winners; Unbridled 1990, SEATTLE SLEW 1977, WHIRLAWAY 1941, Fusaichi Pegasus 2000, Dust Commander 1970, Nothern Dancer 1964 and War Admiral 1937.

Unbridled's grandson (pictured) is beginning a tale of his own ...

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