Bolt d’Oro: Once Upon A Favorite On The Derby Trail

October 10, 2019

Photo Credit: Robert-Mauhar.

To set the scene it was 2017 and what looked to be a strong Kentucky Derby trail candidate in Bolt d’Oro he quickly went derby favorite to playing second fiddle to others who were progressing. It’s not an uncommon thing. This happens more than many realize. Those in the industry know the drill, the rigors of such a campaign can be very grueling on a young colt.

Winning his first three starts like he was shot out of a cannon, Bolt d’ Oro quickly put himself on the map as a serious contender to contest the first Saturday in May, the Kentucky Derby. Bred in Kentucky by Winstar Farms, out of the great sire Medaglia d’Oro whose best known for producing the likes of Rachel Alexandra and Songbird. Bolt d’Oro was the second foal out of the mare Globe Trot, a daughter of A.P. Indy who produced a first foal named Sonic Mule who was extremely fast.

Bolt d’Oro fetched $630,000 at the Fasig-Tipton yearling sale and was purchased by Mick Ruis a Southern California owner who was also his trainer. It’s been said that his name was inspired by Usain Bolt because of the speed he possessed and how easy he apparently made it look when he ran. Bolt d’Oro finished his two-year-old season off with three wins and a third in the Breeders Cup Juvenile where he stumbled at the start and lost to Good Magic.

3-Year-old Season

Bolt d’Oro started his 3 yo season a little behind missing a pre-mapped out prep race due to body soreness and his first start was pushed back until March in the San Felipe Stakes. Bolt d’Oro was favored in the field over a Bob Baffert entry in the name of McKenzie. Bolt d’Oro ran a really good race as he and McKenzie were battling down the stretch together. There was some bumping going on back and forth and McKenzie forged ahead to the lead. Subsequently there was a steward’s inquiry which resulted in McKenzie coming down and Bolt d’Oro getting the win. Unfortunately, this was the last race Bolt’ d’Oro would ever win. His next start came in the Santa Anita Derby where he faced off against another Baffert monster. A young unraced Justify.

Justify put away Bolt d’Oro by setting the early fractions in the race, Bolt d’Oro did offer a bit of a challenge until Justify had hit the next gear and pulled away by three lengths. Bolt d’Oro was entered next in the Kentucky Derby, a race in which he finished a dull 12th place finish, going off as one of the favorites. Bolt d’Oro was taken off the triple crown trail after this and resurfaced in the Met Mile challenging older horses. Bolt d’Oro did offer a challenge for the early lead but ended up not being able to keep up with Bee Jersey and finished up the track dead last.

Bolt was transferred to the Steve Asmussen barn in which he got the layoff he desperately needed however he never subsequently made it back to the races after that. I believe he was a sore horse and quite possibly lost the desire to compete. Bolt was retired to Spendthrift farm to stud duty where he currently resides today standing for $25,000.00. Corey Nakatani said, “there’s no doubt he is the best 2 yo I have ever sat on” Bolt d’Oro was actually the fastest 2 yo since Uncle Mo putting up a 103 Beyer speed figure and a 4 ¾ Ragozin. There’s no doubt his bloodlines of Medaglia d’Oro and A.P. Indy are nothing short of spectacular. I am eager to see his progeny run and wish him the best of luck in the breeding shed.

@Tracking_Trips yessir!

Jason Heidl @jasonHeidl View testimonials

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