Mine That Bird is Cinderella at the ball.
The 2009 Kentucky Derby ended in a true fairy tale. Mine That Bird became the true Cinderella of the ball. The odds were stacked against the young horse and his jockey, Calvin Borel, who had just recently become acquainted with his new partner.
In fact, the odds were near impossible at 50-1. The best part about sports upsets is that no one sees them coming, but when they happen everyone revels in the triumph of the underdog.
The Kentucky Derby is the most coveted of horse races. Most jockeys and trainers spend a lifetime chasing after it.
Mine That Bird captured the unattainable. There were tears, smiles, and emotions of pure shock and elation.
Borel blew kisses of gratitude to the heavens as he proceeded to accept his trophy and blanket of roses. For Mine That Bird’s trainer, Chip Wooley, this was a historical day. He would now be in the presence of true racing greats.
Borel and his two-year-old gelding bullied their way to the front and through a hole inside Join in the Dance and ran away with the win. A gelding is an interesting choice for a race horse—once retired he would not have a lucrative time at pasture like a stallion would. But Wooley wanted a real race horse, not a stud.
Mine That Bird has not come out of nowhere, however. He has won five of his nine major races—not a bad track record. Mine That Bird was only estimated to be worth an embarrassing $9,500. However, his owners paid close to $400,000 for him after he won four straight races.
However you look at it, Mine That Bird turned out to be worth the bet. This long shot horse, old trainer, and scrawny jockey certainly got their fairy tale ending.