Omaha Oldest Living Derby Winner: Serving at Stud At Nebraska Farm; Woodward Runner Captured 1935 Triple Crown; Sired Fleet Runner South Dakota, Daily Racing Form, 1956-05-05


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Omaha Oldest Living Derby Winner Serving at Stud At Nebraska Farm FarmWoodward Woodward Runner Captured 1935 Triple Crown Sired Fleet Runner South Dakota DakotaBy By BYRON SCHOEMAN SCHOEMANFrom From the manner in which he stuck his big chest through the stable door raising his head with a superior air you never would suspect he is the old man of the Kentucky Derby But Omaha still carries himself with the air of a champion championHes Hes 24 years old now but he looks as fit as ever almost ready to go a mile and a quarter against Needles Head Man and Career Boy and give them a battle all the way wayThe The oldest living winner of the Kentucky Derby who won that classic and the rest of the Triple Crown in 1935 Omaha is now a successful sire at an age where most thor ¬ oughbreds have reached equine senility He services 12 to 15 mares a year at Grover Porters farm on the outskirts of the pleas ¬ ant little town of Nebraska City Nebi NebiI I have to admit hes pretty much of a pet says Porter I dont know what wed do without him himIt It has been 21 years since Omaha thun ¬ dered down the stretch at Churchill Downs to score an easy victory in the Belair Stud silks and pay the handsome price of 10 but fame lingers on onNot Not a day passes without people stop ¬ ping by to see him Porter revealed The kids run me ragged And picture requests I get them from all over overSire Sire of Omaha Fox FoxOmaha Omaha was represented i n t h e Derby nominations this year by Omaha Fox but the chestnut out of the Tintagel mare Trevena who is owned by Peter Logan of Oregon didnt advance well enough in his spring training to be ready for the race raceLast Last year Omahas rooting interest was his grandson Summer Tan from the Omaha mare Miss Zippy ZippyPorter Porter noted that most of Omahas prog ¬ eny are too leggy at 2 to reach their best form You have to wait until they are threeyearolds Then generally they are terrific he added addedOmaha Omaha is rated as a good sire by Porter One of Omahas colts was South Dakota who won a measure of fame as the bush track Man o War breaking records all over the Midwest His time of 140 for a mile and 70 yards set in 1945 stood as the world record until Swaps lowered it by two fifths of a second just last month South Dakota earned 72925 with 35 victories 19 seconds and 16 thirds All horses sired by Omaha from 1941 through 1955 won a total of 585 races picking up 528 seconds and 608 thirds thirdsIn In the 1935 Derby the favorite was the filly Nellie Flag the first Calumet Farm representative in the Run for the Roses A group of officials from the AkSarBen track at Omaha decided through pride to wager on Omaha although the colt didnt come from Nebraska Incidentally its somewhat of a mystery even to this day why Omaha was so named namedTook Took Leader HalfMile Pole PoleThe The track was only good and Omaha was away slowly but he took the lead with a terrific spurt at the halfmile pole and won easily by a length and a half with Roman Soldier second and Whiskolo third Nellie Flag was fourth fourthBefore Before the race people thought we were crazy said Jake J Isaacson AkSarBen general manager Here we were singing the Omaha song and betting on a horse we knew nothing about But we were among the few who came away with our pockets full of money moneyIsaacson Isaacson continued We had a crazy idea that if Omaha won we could bring him back to Nebraska for sentimental rea ¬ sons But the late William Woodward Sr the owner had a better idea he went on to win the Triple Crown with Omaha OmahaAbout About five years ago before the elder Woodwards death he was quite pleased to let Omaha be shipped out to Nebraska to spend his final years yearsWe We wanted Omaha as a good stallion to step up the quality of Nebraskabred horses Isaacson said Since his arrival about a dozen other good stallions have been shipped in and the improved quality really shows at Nebraska tracks how howBut But it appears that these plans may have been made too soon That Omahas sire Gallant Fox who won the Triple Crown in 1930 lived to 29 And Omaha is so healthy and frisky right now he may live even longer than that ripe old age

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