Another fantastic episode of Past the Wire's podcast Gate to Wire brought to you by Spendthrift Farm!
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Mike Smith has one of the best resumes of any jockey in the history of Thoroughbred Horse Racing, the Sport of Kings! He is a Hall of Fame, Triple Crown winning jockey who has ridden some of the best horses in the world. Mike has also won more Breeders’ Cup races than any other rider in history and he is not finished yet.
Mike rides Taiba in the Kentucky Derby this year. Taiba is owned by Amr Zedan who also owned Medina Spirit. Should Taiba win the Run for the Roses on the First Saturday in May, Mike Smith will become the oldest jockey to win the Kentucky Derby. It will be his third win in the most exciting two minutes in sports horserace.
His first was aboard Giacomo, one of the biggest long-shots to win the race. His next was on Justify who went on to win The Triple Crown. It was Justify who ended that whole Apollo thing about no horse winning the Kentucky Derby without racing at two since, well Apollo of course who won in 1882. Taiba not only did not race at two, but he has only two starts. Interestingly enough Leonatus won The Kentucky Derby in 1883, the year after Apollo, and Leonatus had just two starts.
If Mike Smith and Taiba cross the wire first it will truly be historic, but will give Mike some asterisks that will never be repeated or equaled. It is quite the story.
Mike sat down for some One on One Q and A with Jonathan Stettin to talk a little Derby and Taiba.