Haskin's Derby Trail: Fate Brought Palace Malice to Derby

In the movie, “Back to the Future,” Michael J. Fox goes back in time and encounters his parents as strangers when they were in high school. He must do everything in his power to make sure they meet and fall in love in order for him to be born.

Although a light comedy, the movie still is thought-provoking, as it demonstrates the intricate network of events that dictate the course we take in life, even to the extent of being born.

In the case of Palace Malice, it was a simple, but fateful, decision by Burl McBride, the trainer of the colt’s dam, Palace Rumor, that has led the son of Curlin to Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby.  

On Nov. 5, 2005, McBride shipped his 2-year-old filly Palace Rumor from his barn at Ellis Park to Churchill Downs to compete in a 1 1/16-mile allowance race on the grass, sending her to the barn of his friend Hal Wiggins. McBride had seven other horses at Ellis Park because he was unable to get stalls at Churchill.

Palace Rumor had been purchased as a weanling at the Keeneland November mixed sale for $8,000, then was pinhooked the following year to the Keeneland September yearling sale, where she sold as Hip 4602 for a meager $5,000 to McBride, representing Corbet Bryant and Tim Gavin.

Making the fifth start of her career in the Churchill allowance race, Palace Rumor, who had broken her maiden by 5 1/2 lengths at Kentucky Downs, rallied from 11th to finish fifth. McBride was about to van her back to Ellis Park after the race, but had second thoughts and decided to keep her at Churchill overnight.

“I ran her that day and she had a real tiring race, so I said, ‘You know what, I’m just gonna let her rest and spend the night at Churchill and I’ll take her back in the morning,’” McBride said. “I had borrowed a stall from Hal Wiggins to run her out of and I just kept her there that night.”

At around 2 a.m., McBride received a phone call and was told his barn was gone.  A tornado had ripped through the backstretch at Ellis Park, destroying six barns. Most of the trainers had shipped out, either to Churchill or other tracks, but McBride was one of the few who still had horses there.

Of McBride’s seven horses, three were dead and four were so badly injured, none of them ever raced again. For a trainer with a small stable, it was a devastating blow. In a heartbeat, McBride was wiped out, except for his one 2-year-old filly who had the good fortune of having raced at Churchill Downs that afternoon and the even better fortune of remaining in Louisville overnight.

Of his injured horses, one had a broken neck, one had his “shoulder ripped off,” and the other two had broken legs.

“That tornado took half the grandstand, too,” McBride said. “Just like that, I only had one horse left. If I had hauled her home that night, she’d probably be dead with the rest of them.”

For McBride, the horror was unbearable. “Bob Jackson, from Ellis Park, called me at 4 o’clock that morning to tell me my very favorite horse who was a real nice colt, had a two by four through him and they caught him running down the road with his guts hanging out, and they were gonna have to put him down. Bob also told me he had heard a cat crying in the rubble and he shined a light in there, but the walls had fallen down on these horses and all he could see were three sets of eyeballs in the dark. When they went to uncover everything, there were two horses in one stall. The wind had actually picked one horse up and put him down in the other stall and then blew the walls down on top of them. And in there with them, layin’ right next to them was my cat, Brave Heart (whose cries helped locate the stricken horses). The cat and the two horses survived, but neither horse ever ran again, they were so badly injured.

“I called Hal at about 5 o’clock and said, “I’m sorry, Hal, but I have to leave that mare there.’ He said, ‘You just leave her here as long as you have to.’ He was very kind about it. He fed her and trained her while I was away trying to save the other horses. He would call me and ask what I wanted to do with her. I was ready to quit, and Hal told me, ‘You need to come get this mare.’ I told him, ‘I was training her for a race down at Louisiana Downs; you go ahead and run her and put her in your name.’ He refused to do it, and I realized afterward he was just doing that to make me come back. That was the year they ran the Fair Grounds meet at Louisiana Downs because of Katrina.”

The following year, Palace Rumor won three consecutive races, culminating with a victory in the Audubon Oaks at Ellis Park. Later that year, she was beaten 4 3/4 lengths in the Marie DeBartolo Oaks and 5 1/2 lengths in the Remington Park Breeders’ Cup Oaks. Her next and final victory came in 2007 in a mile allowance race on grass at Lone Star Park

In 2008, Palace Rumor was put in the Keeneland January mixed sale, where she was purchased by William S. Farish for $140,000.

“We bought her for $5,000, made $111,000 on the track with her, and then sold her at Keeneland for $140,000 as a broodmare,” McBride said. “Will Farish bought her and bred her to Curlin, and guess what they came up with?

“And here’s another kicker. I got a buddy who owns a winery named Mike Post. Mike said to me, ‘Let’s go buy her baby. He was a May foal -- people don’t realize Palace Malice wont turn 3 until two days before the Derby. He wasn’t the prettiest horse in the sale, and we so we bid on him, but we couldn’t get him. The people that bought him (for $25,000) wheeled him back the following year in the Keeneland April 2-year-olds in training sale and Cot Campbell bought him for $200,000.”

The story doesn’t end there. It was McBride, a former jockey, who took a fellow New Mexican named Mike Smith under his wing.

“I put Mike Smith on horses before he started winning races,” McBride said. “He’s from Roswell, N.M. and I’m from Alamagordo. I quit riding in 1980 and that’s when Mike came around. My agent brought him out when he was bug boy. He rode some nice winners for me. I was there when he won the Derby with Giacomo and I was there when he won the Breeders’ Cup with Royal Delta. He’s a good friend of mine. I always called him an illegal alien because he was born in Roswell.”

So, of course, who will be riding Palace Malice in the Kentucky Derby? This is why racing is such a magnificent and compelling sport.

For McBride, who had been training at the recently concluded Oaklawn meet, he is getting a bad case of Derby fever, and rightly so. Every time he sees Palace Malice run, he thinks back to that fateful decision and the filly that would save his career and provide him with so many thrills.

“I was proud of her when I had her and I’m proud of her now,” he said.

There is only thing that would give this fairy tale a proper ending.

“Something drastic is gonna have to happen for me not to be at the Derby this year,” McBride said. “I know Todd’s dad, J.J., and I just hope Todd or Mr. Campbell let me in the paddock…or better still, the winner’s circle. If you could put in a good word for me to get me in the winner’s circle if this colt wins I’ll love you forever.”


Leave a Comment:


Wow, what an incredible story.  That's gotta cinch it for Palace I think.  Thanks Steve for sharing that.

19 Apr 2013 11:53 PM
joseph alva

Lovely article, Steve.  Thanks for what you bring to racing fans with these very touching stories you regularly provide.  I have yet to find another writer of the sport that can so sensitively articulate the many dimensions of the game and the industry.  

Who knows?  If Palace Malice, who seems to be thriving already in his environs at Churchill, continues to come alive, you and others may be writing more about him.  He is one of the contenders I am keeping a keen eye on.  

20 Apr 2013 12:25 AM

When Palace Malice enters the starting gates for Derby 2013, he will be making his third start in 33 days. In addition to this, he will be attempting to be competitive at a distance of 10F following two starts at 9F in span of 13 days. I fully understand his connections’ desire to contest the Derby but I doubt this desire is in the best interest of the colt.

Palace Malice is a nice colt that has only managed to win a MSW race. He had four opportunities to add to his number of wins and failed. The only excuse he had was in the LA Derby where he was severely hindered by horses that were backing up. In the Risen Star he was beaten by a 99-1 longshot who at like Palace malice had only a MSW victory to his credit.

I cannot imagine that his connections think he will be able to compete effectively against colts that are entering the Derby with lighter schedules and appropriate rest.

When the undefeated Nijinsky ll was entered the Arc, his trainer was not in favor as he was of the opinion that the race was too close to his St Leger victory that saw him completing the 1970 Triple Crown. The decision to start Nijinsky in the Arch resulted in his first loss in 12 starts.

Palace Malice has not exhibited the requisite class and brilliance to win a 10F against the best of his peers 21 days after contesting two 9F races in a span 13 days.

I fear this decision will ruin this colt and his trainer is certainly not providing appropriate guidance.

20 Apr 2013 12:54 AM

Good story Steve personaly I like his chances in the KDerby.I think him having to run in the Blue Grass on the AW probably will help him going back to dirt.

20 Apr 2013 1:19 AM

I live in tornado alley and in 1980 several twisters ripped the town apart. I know the winds can put a straw through wood. I can only imagine the terror and agony it unleashed on the poor horses. Good story, but heartbreaking. When the sirens go off I always pray for the animals who can't take shelter underground. As for the derby, we all know by now, anything is possible.

20 Apr 2013 1:29 AM
Donna Belcher

Excellent article.

20 Apr 2013 1:52 AM

Oh Steve, no one tells a story like you do.  Well done, my friend, well done!

20 Apr 2013 3:04 AM
Mike from Michigan

Wow, thanks Steve for bringing us that amazing story.  Honestly, if this colt wins the derby, they could make a movie from this story.  No doubt who I will pulling for in the derby.  Wouldn't it be fitting if this young colt were to beat the likes of Verrazano, Revolutionary, Orb and Goldencents?  Question Steve: if PM were to win the derby, would he be one of the youngest winners ever to wear the roses?  Thanks.

20 Apr 2013 5:07 AM
Lexington Bloodstock

Another story worthy to be part of a book collection.  

Thanks again Steve for giving us the "inside scoop."  THIS is what true racing fans yearn for in turf scribes.  

Not to be snarky, but, what passes for racing journalism today is convoluted typing, not writing.

Pieces like this help redeem the profession.

20 Apr 2013 7:00 AM
michael old friend

Steve, As usual, a great job.

20 Apr 2013 7:35 AM
Betty Knox

About six years ago The Dallas Morning News published a front page article about Burl's  cat Brave Heart and the role he played in helping rescuers locate horses in the collapsed barn after the tornado.  My sister and I drove out to Lone Star Park to meet Burl and the cat.  Burl was gracious to the unannounced visitors and shared the story of how Brave Heart's cries from the devastation alerted rescuers to two horses trapped in the rubble.  The last update I had on Brave Heart was that he is alive and doing well!  Thanks for the story on Burl, Brave Heart and Palace Malice.

20 Apr 2013 8:26 AM

Once again Mr.  Haskin comes up with a truly magical story.  Now I don't know who to root for in the upcoming derby-my head says Verrazano, my heart now say Palace Malice.

20 Apr 2013 8:55 AM

Talk about a spot play!  No pin the tail on the donkey this year!

20 Apr 2013 9:23 AM
Derby Dew


You are a treasure.  You never fail to come up with these rich and colorful insights into the "story behind the story".  Palace Malice is one of my dark horses for the Derby and now, after reading this story, I'll be rooting for him even harder.  With all the hardships and disappointment that comes with this game, there always seems to be a silver lining when one perserveres.  "The journey continues and hope remains alive"

(Ted Kennedy, 2008 Democratic Convention).

P.S.  I enjoyed your heartfelt tribute to T. J. Kelly.  His life was part of the golden era of racing.  His like is hard to find these days.

Thank you!

20 Apr 2013 9:32 AM
Rusty Weisner

Steve Haskin,

I like this horse a lot and will be playing him if all goes well so I'll look forward to your updates on how he looks.  I like the name, too: regal, yet tongue-in-cheek.

20 Apr 2013 9:46 AM

The timing of Palace Malice’s last two races preceding the Derby is similar to that of MSW winner and 2011 Derby runner up Nehro.  Nehro contested the 9F LA Derby on 3/26/2011 and 20 days later he contested the 9F AK Derby. He returned 20 days later to finish second in the KD.

Palace Malice contested the 9F LA Derby on 3/30/2013 and 13 days later he contested the 9F Bluegrass. He will returned 21 days later to contest KD.

Nehero had an additional 7 days to recover before contesting the AK Derby. Palace Malice is therefore attempting to be competitive in the KD in a shorter window.

The 2013 Derby field is much stronger than the 2011. The task facing Palace Malice is daunting and if he is capable of giving a maximum effort, I cannot see him being a competitive for the rest of the year as 28F in 33 days is placing too much of a burden on the colt.

Below are some horses that contested the Derby whose last two and three starts preceding the Derby were contested over 9F.

2003 – Empire Maker (2 x 9F) 2nd

2006 – Barbaro (3 x 9F) 1st

2010 - Ice Box (3 x 9F) 2nd

2010 - Paddy O’ Prado (3x 9F) 3rd

2011 – Nehro (2 x 9F) 2nd

2012 - Dullahan (2 x 9F) 3rd

It should be noted that with the exception of Nehro, the spacing between those races were an average 30 days.

20 Apr 2013 10:56 AM
Pedigree Ann

Coldfacts - Affirmed won the Santa Anita Derby on April 2, the Hollywood Derby on April 16, the Kentucky Derby on May 6, the Preakness on May 20, and the Belmont on June10. This was the tried and true method of using races to gain improved strength and bone.

Modern trainers think that 4-5 weeks rest between races is required after a hard effort, but a physiologist would tell you that such a schedule allows the muscle and bone remodeling that occurred in the first race to dissipate and go to waste.

20 Apr 2013 11:18 AM
Pedigree Ann

I was not high on Palace Malice earlier because so many were pushing him only because he was a son of Curlin. But now I understand that he is also a worthy son of Palace Rumor and worth a look on Derby day. If only he had a better name!

20 Apr 2013 11:26 AM

History has proved Any horse in the Derby can win. Forget the odds. Fate is a powerful force. No one would be that surprised to see Palace Malice in the winners circle, let alone, in the money. Throw coldhardfacts out the window.

20 Apr 2013 11:34 AM
The Doctor

Another great story Steve - you're the best!

20 Apr 2013 11:36 AM
Mike from Michigan

@coldfacts.......ever hear of 'Willy Beamin'?

20 Apr 2013 11:41 AM

Steve :  So did you talk to Todd  about getting McBride in the paddock or the winner's circle if PM wins ?  If so, can you pls add my name too ?

20 Apr 2013 12:52 PM

Coldfacts I agree on this point 3 races in a month is too much for todays 3yo.The way I look at betting in a 20 horse field is a very broad outlook(at least this year).I dont think that I can narrow down this field to one contender but I look for horses that can hit the board and give me a chance to hit the exacta and possibly the triple and a poosible lottery ticket for the $1 super.

In this sense I think Palice Malice has one more in him especially with his running style and coming off the tightener on Poly.

20 Apr 2013 1:20 PM
Old Timer

Steve nobody tells these heartfelt stories better! Whether it be tales of the "Derby gods" or a fateful connection like this one, you are always give us food for thought.

Having said that, I tend to agree with Coldfacts that the horse has had a lot of running in a short time and has not beaten the best of the best. Nevertheless perhaps he will peak at the right time. Best of luck to his connections in Louisville.

20 Apr 2013 1:44 PM


I've been reading your articles for years and finally created a Bloodhorse account today.  I don't think there is a better storyteller than you.  I consider myself a pedigree expert, but always learn something from you.

20 Apr 2013 2:10 PM
Love 'em all

This story makes me appreciate Palace Rumor more than ever.  She's a lot more than a mare with a great name ... and a talented son by Curlin.    

I'm a little confused as to the correct birthdate of Palace Malice.  I've read the date is May 2nd, but after reading this story, the date must be May 20th.  I just happen to like knowing their birthdays, and it's easier for me to remember b'days than track records.  [grinning]

And speaking of New Mexico, Peppers Pride is one day older than Palace Rumor.   That 2003 was a good year!    

Go Palace Malice!  

20 Apr 2013 2:39 PM

What an incredible story and as always written to heartwarming perfection. Thank you Steve. You are the best! Good luck to Palice Malice.

20 Apr 2013 2:44 PM
Steve Haskin

Thanks, everyone for your comments. you gotta love the Derby trail :)

I have changed that line regarding Palace Malice's birthday. For some reason when Burl said late May I had it in my head it was May 31. But it is indeed May 2.

20 Apr 2013 3:04 PM

Regarding Palace Malice's racing schedule, three races in 33 days was not atypical back in the old days. I sometimes wonder how racehorses stay fit with their current schedules. I think that trainers treating their horses like hothouse flowers is doing both the horses and the breed a disservice. I certainly don't know if Palice Malice can win the Derby, but I have to wonder how things would be if more horses ran with this kind of schedule.

Thanks again, Steve, for bringing all of the behind-the-scenes interest to life.

20 Apr 2013 4:20 PM

Thanks again, Steve, for making the Derby Trail such an enjoyable ride.  I never root for Pletcher horses, but after reading that story, I might make an exception and add Palace Malice to the list of horses I'd like to see win.  And to Pedigree Ann, thank you for being the voice of reason.  It is my firm conviction that the reason we haven't had a Triple Crown winner in so long is due to current training methods, not the fragility of the modern thoroughbred.  Sunny Jim, who won two TC's said an unfit horse will be more tired when he races and more prone to injury.  BTW, whatever happened to the concept of the betterment of the breed?  How is breeding unsound horses with speed over short distances making it better?  Weren't races at one time a measuring stick to see if your breeding was successful?  Now they breed for dollars and success is measured by auction figures.

20 Apr 2013 4:30 PM

Steve, your beautiful vignette's are what separates the 'road to the Derby' from the mundane in racing. When, I was a child I watched the movie "Kentucky " (Loretta Young) and your writing always brings back that same unspoiled beauty and drama that is racing, at it's best, is unsurpassed in sport.

20 Apr 2013 4:56 PM

Great story!  I live in Aiken, SC (home of Dogwood Stable and Cot Campbell) and have been following Palace Malice.

He's had some terrible racing luck (except for his last start) so perhaps with Mike Smith in the irons for the Derby this entire "perhaps meant to be story" will finally play out!

20 Apr 2013 6:17 PM

Secretation good post although you kind of contradict yourself from the beginning to the end.

20 Apr 2013 7:28 PM
Arts and Letters

Great story!  And Hal Wiggins sounds like such a gentleman!  I still wonder what Rachel Alexandra's career would have been like if she hadn't been sold and had remained with Hal.

20 Apr 2013 8:37 PM

Coldfacts 20 Apr 2013 10:56 AM Great post ...I've got to agree with you about Palace Malice ...and go further to say that his chances of hitting the board in the Derby are very slim. He'd certainly be a live shot for at least a minor placing in the Preakness if he were to forego the Derby.

Pedigree Ann,

It may be painful to admit but drugs/medication plus inbred propensity for unsoundness has made the "iron horse" of the past almost extinct.

Lets see how Palace Malice stands up after the Derby.

20 Apr 2013 9:43 PM

Another well written, heart warming story, Steve.  Thanks.  Someday soon, I hope you compile all these great stories you've done in a book.

To this point, I have not had Palace Malice on my list, for some of the same reasons Coldfacts pointed out.  

Pedigree Ann--You wish he had a better name?  Yes, there is something about his name, I've heard that before. Picking through the cobwebs of my brain, starting in Jerkola, down the Insane River, across the Giva Dam, through Pushover, into Shmowland to the Stronghold of Shmow, yes.... there it is: "Malice in the Palace"  the Three Stooges short from 1949.

Now, If a horse with the name of 'King Rootin Tootin' ever gets into the Derby......

Yes, Steve, you gotta love the Derby trail :)

20 Apr 2013 9:52 PM
Sail On

I feel so sorry for those injured horses. They must have been terrified.

20 Apr 2013 11:02 PM
Lise from Maine



What a story!

I just love stories like this.

He is my horse to bet on.

Thanks for sharing this story.

Lise from Maine

20 Apr 2013 11:25 PM

Chief Picawinna, I can sort of see what you mean, thanks for pointing that out.  It's true, I'm lamenting the fact that the breed has suffered because of current breeding trends while stating that the reason for the lack of a TC winner is training, not fragility.  Obviously the breed has changed because of the breeding philosophies of our day, at least in America, but I still think the larger problem at the highest level is training rather than soundness/fragility.  I have to believe that the best horses could be trained the way horses were in the past and more properly prepared for a TC run.  Not that I want to put the horses in jeopardy, but I think the older methods would still work for good horses.  Maybe those methods would also do a better job of weeding out the horses that are detrimental to the gene pool and give us a better indicator of which horses should be bred.  Those who can't withstand more rigorous training should be retrained for other purposes and not sent to the breeding shed to pass on weak genes.  I know, it's easy for a non-owner like me (who doesn't stand to lose a lot of money) to say.

I will say this, if we do get a Triple Crown winner again, I think it's going to come from a trainer who was willing to run his horse more often and get him fit for the run.  It will also probably be a horse with less than trendy breeding.  We'll see that the breeding was good, but not conventional.  

21 Apr 2013 2:42 AM

Pedigree Ann,

Your important points have been noted.

21 Apr 2013 8:20 AM


Palace Malice is from the Mr. Prospector sire line and his sire Curlin belongs to an elite category of stallions from this sire line.

If not for his crammed scheduled I would view his chances more favorably. I consider what is being asked of this May foal to be too much given requisite race day medications recovery tmime.

Lookin At Lucky was a May foal who won six of seven starts as a 2YO. He was unable with a lighter schedule and more foundation to win the Derby.

Mine That Bird was the last May foal to win the Derby. His he like Lookin At Lucky was a champion 2YO with foundation and regular rest between his two races preceding his Derby. PioneerOf A Nile and Musket Man 2nd and 3rd past the post were also Mays foals that entered the Derby off regular rest schedules and more foundation.

Modern day horses have to be given time to recover from race day drugs and medication.

I am of the opinion the certain trainers operate high octane programs. The horses from these trainers barns need more time between races. if the colt was from another barn I would not be so doubtful.

If not for race day drugs and medications I would not be so negative regarding the colt's chances as he is from my beloved Mr. P sire line.

21 Apr 2013 8:48 AM
Rusty Weisner

Coldfacts, Ranagulzion --

The Derby winner usually comes back to easily win the Preakness on three weeks' rest, after the most taxing race in his life.  I'm willing to bet the improving Palace Malice has a peak yet.

21 Apr 2013 9:36 AM

Great story, Steve. I've been looking at the prep race videos this morning, and I think Palace Malice is a live longshot. He had an awful trip in the Louisiana Derby--throw that out. My only problem with him is that he tends to switch to the wrong lead in the stretch. He did it in both the Risen Star and the Blue Grass. If he'd stayed on the right lead, he might have won both races and be going into the Derby as one of the favorites.

21 Apr 2013 10:01 AM
Pedigree Ann

Rana -

Yet we still see horses come back on 'short rest' and run well. Midas Eyes winning the Forego 8 days after a allowance score. Willy Beamin winning the King's Bishop only a few days after winning a NY-bred stakes. Don't Get Mad wins the Derby Trial and a week later runs the best race of his life to be 4th in the Derby, then winning another stakes at CD another couple of weeks later.

It's the training more than the bloodlines. Modern horses at the elite levels are undertrained and underraced.

21 Apr 2013 10:15 AM

I heard Jerry Bailey say during the Woodward/Arkansas Derby that "if I had to pick a horse to ride right now I would pick Palace Malice". Jockeys know horses and fight to get the mounts they want. I want to see Curlin's colt win anyway. Don't count Palace Malice out yet, stranger things have happened in the Derby.

21 Apr 2013 11:57 AM
Old Timer

Rusty, just to clarify, the Preakness is and has been two weeks after the Derby. The Belmont is then three weeks after that.

21 Apr 2013 11:59 AM
Love 'em all

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I remember reading 'somewhere' that Palace Malice's name is based on a 'play on words' of the 2004 brawl between the Pacers and the Pistons ... 'Malice at the Palace'.  YouTube has more than one video of the 'brawl', if you even care to check it out.

21 Apr 2013 12:14 PM

Great story, Steve; I liked Palace Malice before reading it, I love Palace Malice after reading it.  On a side note, he should be the hunch play for every Three Stooges fan because of the episode "Malice in the Palace", he's worth at least two pokes... I mean two bucks to win on him.  I have a feeling legendary Stooge and horse player Larry Fine as well as his cohort Moe Howard (who passed away 38 years ago this upcoming KY Derby Day) will be smiling from above when Palace Malice comes home a winner in the Churchill feature.  

21 Apr 2013 12:27 PM
Love 'em all

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I remember reading 'somewhere' that Palace Malice's name is based on a 'play on words' of the 2004 brawl between the Pacers and the Pistons ... 'Malice at the Palace'.  YouTube has more than one video of the 'brawl', if you even care to check it out.  

21 Apr 2013 12:47 PM
Mike from Michigan

@love 'em all.....that is correct about Palace Malice.

21 Apr 2013 4:48 PM

Secretation Ok we have somewhat different opinions,thats why they wait for us to bet, and then run the race.

21 Apr 2013 5:01 PM
Karen in Texas

X-DRFMan----For what it's worth, Cot Campbell believes Palace Malice switched leads in the Blue Grass because he saw tractor marks on the track.

Love 'em all----I read (but can't remember the source) that PM was named for the Malice at the Palace altercation as well. If I find the source, I'll post it later.


21 Apr 2013 6:07 PM
Rusty Weisner

Old Timer,

Of course, thanks.  I had the Bluegrass/Arkansas to Derby interval in mind.  Just makes the point better.  It's what makes picking the Preakness so easy.  Any fast winner out of the Derby wins the Preakness easily, being razor sharp, while any off-the-pace type winner of the Derby merits skepticism with the shorter distance and narrower configuration.

21 Apr 2013 6:26 PM
Little Bill

When they first installed poly all you heard about was how well horses came back from their works and races. I'd be more concerned if a horse was rushed to Ark three wks out.

21 Apr 2013 9:22 PM


Nehro is still eligible for n/w 2 other than.

21 Apr 2013 10:13 PM



02/25/12 - AlwOC

02/21/11 - MSW

22 Apr 2013 8:03 AM
Pedigree Ann

Very likely the naming of the altercation owed something to the name of the Three Stooges short, lurking in the hind-brains of the reporters. Since Stooges fans are predominantly guys, my husband included. Slapstick is violence with no consequences, after all.

22 Apr 2013 9:31 AM
Love 'em all

Re:  Palace Malice's name

Thanks to Mike from Michigan (The Palace of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, MI) and Karen in Texas (enjoyed the link) for your support concerning this matter.  [laughing]


For the record, I'd take Bud Abbott and Lou Costello anyday over the Three Stooges!   Red Skelton was a close second.   My favorite slapstick comedy is still .... "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World".  That is one funny movie!  Rest in peace Jonathan Winters.  

22 Apr 2013 11:02 AM

I saw Mike Smith listed as co-owner on Palace Malice's Equibase, and thought, nahhh, that can't be him.  There's a LOT of Mike Smiths in the world.  Lo & behold, it IS him.  Question:  Is it legal to ride on a horse you own in a race?  Or is it like owners & trainers - it is NOT legal to bet on other horses in a race.  If the latter is true, does that mean that Mike couldn't ride any other horse in the Derby?

22 Apr 2013 11:20 AM

Karen in Texas 21 Apr 2013 6:07 PM

Great to see that you're still around these blogs. Palace Malice probably needs shadow rolls as part of his bridle parafernalia but Todd Pletcher doesn't use them ...giving credence to criticism by my good friend, Coldfacts, of his "one-size-fits-all" bridle policy.

22 Apr 2013 1:40 PM

B0096EFSLC-Profitable Horse Racing Handicapping...google it

22 Apr 2013 2:26 PM
Karen in Texas

Hey, Ranag! Of course I'm still here; I'm one of the charter member Haskinites! I think the Aiken Standard article above says they are working Palace Malice with blinkers now; a shadow roll is not a bad idea, though...

22 Apr 2013 3:25 PM
Love 'em all

Thanks to Mike from Michigan ("The Palace" of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, MI) and Karen in Texas (enjoyed the link).  

22 Apr 2013 3:36 PM
Kathy Ray

Mcbride said that he didn't think the LA Derby didn't take anything out of Palace Malice because he didn't get to run in it,because he was up every horses A$$ but his own,lol.In Mcbride's opinion it didn't look like Palace Malice handled the poly track at Keeneland well. He thinks he is the horse to fear in the Derby if you are running against him.  

22 Apr 2013 6:44 PM
Love 'em all

Cheers!  Palace Malice made the cover of this week's issue of B-H (4/20) ... along with winner Java's War (Charming Kitten's head can be seen).   All three look very serious ... very determined.  Such blue, blue skies for the Blue Grass  that day!  Nice cover.

24 Apr 2013 11:27 AM
Mookie's Hero

Hello Steve

This is just a wonderful story ( would make a great novel or screenplay). But you have to finish the story. Did Mr McBride make the winners' circle for the Belmont?. Just a terific win for the horse, all the connections and the dam of Palace Malice.

Best regards

Mookie's Hero

08 Jun 2013 11:52 PM

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