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California Chrome wins 140th Kentucky Derby

California Dreamin'

By BETH HARRIS
AP Racing Writer

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- A horse with a humble pedigree. A couple of working stiff owners. A 77-year-old trainer with his first Kentucky Derby horse.

Even Hollywood couldn't have made this up.

California Chrome made it look easy on Saturday, pulling away down the stretch to win the Derby by 1 3/4 lengths.

Art Sherman became the oldest trainer to win the Derby, 57 years after he traveled from California as an exercise rider for Derby winner Swaps. He watched that race from the barn area; this time he smelled red roses in the winner's circle.

"It's been a long haul," Sherman said, smiling. "I'm just the same old Art Sherman, except I won the Kentucky Derby."

California Chrome ran 1 1/4 miles in 2:03.66 and paid $7, $5.60 and $4.20. The chestnut colt was sent off as the 5-2 favorite by the crowd of 164,906, the second-largest in the Derby's 140-year history.

In a sport dominated by wealthy owners and regally bred horses from Kentucky's bluegrass country, this was a victory for the little guys. Owners Perry Martin and Steve Coburn bred an $8,000 mare to a $2,500 stallion to produce the winner of the world's most famous race with their one-horse stable.

"This is just a dream come true and a great birthday present,'" said Coburn, who turned 61 on Saturday.

California Chrome extended his winning streak to five races by a combined 26 lengths. It was the second Derby win for Espinoza, who rode War Emblem to victory in 2002.

"I thought he rode him perfect," said Sherman, a former jockey. "I was riding the last 70 yards with Victor, so I think he was riding two. He had a lot of weight on him, I can tell you that."

Espinoza had California Chrome sitting comfortably in third in the 19-horse field as Uncle Sigh and Chitu set the early pace.

California Chrome made his move on the final turn in tandem with Samraat. It looked like those two would decide the outcome, until California Chrome sped away to become the first California-bred to win the Derby since Decidedly in 1962.

Commanding Curve, a 37-1 shot, rallied for second, with Danza third. Wicked Strong was fourth and Samraat finished fifth.

Commanding Curve returned $31.80 and $15.40, giving trainer Dallas Stewart his second straight runner-up finish with a double-digit longshot. Danza, named for actor Tony Danza of "Who's the Boss?" fame, paid $6 to show.

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Jean May 03 2014 at 10:09 PM

Congratulations to California Chome....You did it beautifully, and when you came around the backstretch I cried all the way to the finish line. A winner! See you at the Preakness.

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christopherhorn1 May 03 2014 at 11:14 PM

Sounds like a great success story for a battler!.

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1 reply
Nancy christopherhorn1 May 04 2014 at 1:28 AM

ummm what does baffert have to do with this? he is not chrome's trainer and god forbid, he becomes his trainer, as we will have an another injured animal on our hands.

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Steve May 03 2014 at 11:19 PM

WOW!! What a day for the "little" guy!! Chrome is one heck of a race horse and has done California breds well. It will be a Derby that will be remembered by me forever.Congrats to the 77 year old trainer and what a 61sy birthday present for the ppartner/owner that had the guts to live out his dream. Bet they are glad they didnt take that sure thing 6 million that was offered for 51% ownership. HURRAY FOR THE LITTLE GUYS!!!!!!!

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NSOULMATE2 May 03 2014 at 11:24 PM

yeah!!!

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ronminami May 03 2014 at 11:28 PM

Very happy for the owners, but you never know in horse racing if a horse will come out of the race as good as he went into it. Hope he can continue on his winning street, but there have been many great ones before him who couldn't get the second and third portions of the triple crown.

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1 reply
Bert Heyder ronminami May 04 2014 at 2:41 AM

Bring on the next two of the Triple Crown "CC" can win it ALL!

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diempostdiem May 03 2014 at 11:30 PM

Look at the other items on Huff Post. This site is so up the butt of Obama that it can't see. I am sick of Huff Post. They can go to hell.

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6 replies
Lynn May 03 2014 at 11:31 PM

Chrome can win any race with the blessings of God and the hard work of his trainer and the conviction of his owners. People need to stop nay saying loses even before they happen and horses that lose one race go on to win many more or are put out to stud and if I had a mare I would be proud to breed to such a specimen and the Chrome! People get over yourselves and let the winners have their 15 minutes and if it's the triple crown then how are you going to dismiss that and still not sound like the jerk you do now?

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1 reply
johnmccarry73pct Lynn May 04 2014 at 3:57 AM

I like to pick horses for fun. I am not a gambler. I do it on paper only, I picked California Chrome early Sat morn from mornimng paper. I was not home when race was run, but I saw it on the 10pm news. Can anyone tell me what my imiginary bet of $ 100.would have paid me
Thanks, BTW CONGRATS TO ESPINOSA

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1 reply
Daniel johnmccarry73pct May 04 2014 at 11:49 AM

The win-place-show odds had the winning horse at $7. You would have won $700.

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gwolfdog May 03 2014 at 11:53 PM

Much like Obama the little guy with Heart, Courage and Speed out ran BIG MONEY (horses) and championed the American Dream.

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5 replies
redreg1234 May 04 2014 at 12:07 AM

I've known Art Sherman for many years when I was in the Horse game, He is a class act and is liked by everyone who has known him, and his wife and children. It could not have happen to a nicer man and no one should have deserved it more then Art Sherman.

Tony L.

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1 reply
# 1 Realtor redreg1234 May 04 2014 at 12:24 AM

Well said and very happy for all!!

Congrats!!!

Carol Jablonski Brewster

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rosi May 04 2014 at 12:39 AM

AP Writer Beth Harris Should Have Asked Victor Espinoza Something. After All, Espinoza Rode the Winning Horse. I Wonder if Writers Just Assume Spanish-Surname Folks Don't Speak English. Or Do Writers Just Not Care What Hispanic Winners Have to Say. You Don't See That In Football, Basketball, Where Players Who Can Hardly Speak English Are Always Asked For A Comment. Let's See Some Journalistic Integrity!

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2 replies
watersportz1 rosi May 04 2014 at 1:19 AM

should have asked to see his green card

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1 reply
Lucille watersportz1 May 04 2014 at 3:57 AM

Why do you assume all hispanic last names aren't as American as you are? Or are you American?

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barngirrl rosi May 04 2014 at 1:43 AM

That's racist. I know you didn't mean your comment to be racist, but it is. How about asking the winner of the race's jockey wasn't interviewed and not referring to him by race. That's why a lot of people have problems with Mexicans, they are racist!

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2 replies
Lucille barngirrl May 04 2014 at 3:59 AM

Yes he did mean it to be against hispanic last names? Racist hmmmmm hispanic isn't a race is it?

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Daniel barngirrl May 04 2014 at 11:47 AM

Hispanic is not a race. There are three races, their being Caucasian, Oriental and Negroid.

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