There has been no shortage of compelling horse racing storylines in recent years but Patch could top them all when the one-eyed underdog sets off in the Kentucky Derby for the first leg of US thoroughbred racing’s Triple Crown.
The Todd Pletcher-trained colt’s left eye was removed last June due to a massive inflammation in the globe of his eye but his trainer does not expect that to hamper his performance at Churchill Downs on Saturday.
Patch, who was named before his eye was removed, is a long shot for the race in Louisville featuring the top three-year-old thoroughbreds.
The son of former Belmont Stakes winner Union Rags entered the Kentucky Derby scene after a second-place finish in last month’s Louisiana Derby. It was an impressive performance for the inexperienced Patch, who had only run twice before and was competing in his first graded stakes.
Nothing about the way Patch trains sets him apart from the other horses until onlookers catch a glimpse of the hollow cavity on the left side of his face.