Derby Contenders

Prep Race History

PDF Download Past Performances
Date Race Grade Distance Finish Chart Replay
May 5 2012 138th Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands Churchill Downs I 1 1/4 6 REPLAY
Apr 7 2012 Santa Anita Derby Santa Anita Park I 1 1/8 Miles 7 REPLAY
Mar 10 2012 San Felipe Santa Anita Park II 1 1/16 Miles 4 REPLAY
Feb 4 2012 Robert B. Lewis Santa Anita Park II 1 1/16 Miles REPLAY
Dec 17 2011 CashCall Futurity Hollywood Park I 1 1/16 Miles (S) 1 N/A

Connections

Bob Baffert

Trainer

Hall of Famer Bob Baffert won the Kentucky Derby back-to-back in 1997 and 1998 with Silver Charm and Real Quiet and again in 2002 with War Emblem. He has saddled 19 horses in the Run for the Roses. He has won the Preakness stakes a record tying five times and has won the Eclipse Award for top trainer three times. Baffert has saddled two Kentucky Oaks winners, Silverbulletday and Plum Pretty.

Martin Garcia

Jockey

A descendant of Mexico, Garcia began riding show jumping horses at the age of 14 and his abilities landed him a job galloping horses at Pleasanton Racetrack in California. Garcia burst on to the national racing scene with a win aboard Lookin at Lucky in the 2010 Preakness Stakes. He has since become Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert's first call rider. Martin Garcia was victorious in the 2011 Kentucky Oaks aboard Plum Pretty.

Arnold Zetcher

Owner

Zetcher is the former CEO of Talbots, a manufacturer and retailer of upscale women’s clothing. While attending college at Washington University in St. Louis, Zetcher began attending races at different tracks including a trip to Arlington Park where he saw the great Secretariat. In 2000, he started owning horses and his stable has included Grade 1 stakes winners Gabby’s Golden Gal, E Z’s Gentleman, and El Brujo.

  • Photo: Benoit Photo

  • Photo: Benoit Photo

  • Photo: Benoit Photo

  • Photo: Benoit Photo

  • Photo: Benoit Photo

Pedigree

Well-balanced pedigree of speed on top and stamina underneath features two warriors from the 1998 Derby trail -- Indian Charlie, that year's beaten Derby favorite, and Victory Gallop, the Derby and Preakness runner-up who went on to win the Belmont Stakes, denying Real Quiet the Triple Crown.

Ironically, Liaison's trainer Bob Baffert was also an integral player in that drama, as the conditioner of both Real Quiet and Indian Charlie. The Hall of Famer now finds himself back in the Derby spotlight with a son of Indian Charlie, and a grandson of Victory Gallop. In a further layer of interconnection, Liaison won the Real Quiet Stakes at Hollywood Park last fall.

Indian Charlie remained unbeaten through the 1 1/8-mile Santa Anita Derby, but could manage only third in the Run for the Roses, and never raced again after sustaining an injury.

His best son is the now-retired Uncle Mo, the undefeated champion two-year-old of 2010 who was scratched from last year's Derby due to illness. Freakish up to 1 1/16 miles, Uncle Mo was beaten in his only two attempts beyond that distance, albeit with some degree of excuse.

Other progeny of Indian Charlie have likewise tilted toward brilliant speed -- Indian Blessing, the champion two-year-old filly of 2007 and champion female sprinter of 2008; Indian Apple Is, Canada's champion female sprinter of 2010; Grade 2-winning sprinters Indiano and Bwana Charlie; and multiple Grade 3 victor Conveyance, who faded to 15th in the 2010 Run for the Roses.

Yet he's still capable of siring horses with greater stamina on occasion -- like Fleet Indian, the champion older mare of 2006 after romps in the 1 1/4-mile Personal Ensign and Delaware Handicap; Spinster winner Pampered Princess; and Anthony's Cross, winner of last year's Robert B. Lewis.

Baffert has noted that Liaison doesn't flash the speed typical of an Indian Charlie, and resembles more his dam's side of the family and her sire Victory Gallop. Liaison's dam, Galloping Gal, was twice a stakes winner going 1 1/16 miles on turf and runner-up in the Alcibiades on dirt. An earner of $348,269, she has produced two winners from two runners. Her first foal to make the races, One Last Dance, has also won beyond a mile, despite being by the speedy Officer.

Victory Gallop was not bottomed out by his strong performances throughout the 1998 Triple Crown, but went on to miss narrowly in the Haskell and Travers. Developing into the champion older male the following year, the $3 million-earner romped in the Stephen Foster Handicap in track-record time at Churchill and snared the Whitney Handicap on the way to his Eclipse Award.

Victory Gallop was primarily known as a stamina influence before his export to Turkey. He has sired turf marathoners Prince Will I Am and Solitaire; Free Fee Lady, winner of two Canadian fillies' classics; and millionaire Anak Nakal. Other leading performers include Japanese miler Eishin Dover and Jaycito, a smart juvenile of 2010. His daughters have produced Grade 2-winning sprinter Nicole H and recent stakes winner Tiz Flirtatious.

Galloping Gal is herself out of Indy Flash, an unraced daughter of another Belmont winner in A.P. Indy, the 1992 Horse of the Year. Although the female line has not had an abundance of top-class offspring of late, it traces to Hall of Famer and influential matron Real Delight, whose descendants include Alydar.

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