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Zipse At The Track

109-1 in the Louisiana Derby … It’s Hero of Order!

Did anyone have it? I can’t be the only one asking that after the stunning result in the $1 Million Louisiana Derby

Sent off at staggering odds of 109-1, Hero of Order pulled off the shocker of the 2012 Kentucky Derby trail with a half-length score over favored Mark Valeski, for owner and trainer Gennadi Dorochenko. The dark bay colt stalked the early pace set by Comisky’s Humor, before taking over the lead coming out of the far turn. It appeared he might be soon swallowed up by the field early in the stretch, but he found another gear to maintain his advantage under veteran rider Eddie Martin, Jr. Mark Valeski made one final surge to the longshot in the final fifty yards, but Hero of Order had enough to hold him off. Final time for the son of Sharp Humor over the nine furlongs on the fast track was 1:50.13.

When a horse pays $220.80 to win a major race, us so called experts search for answers. If you are like me, and looking for reasons why Hero of Order won, rather than why he was more than one hundred to one, try a few of these facts on for size:

-He was so well liked as a yearling, Hero of Order sold for a whopping $3,000 at the Keeneland September Sale. By the way, today’s first place prize was $600,000.

-The Louisiana Derby was Hero of Order’s 14th lifetime start, easily the most in the field, with only a maiden win to his credit before today.

-Three different times as a juvenile, Hero of Order ran in maiden claiming races, finishing 2nd, 3rd, and 5th respectively.

-Of the 13 horses in the field, only Hero of Order and Fire Alarm were not nominated for the Triple Crown. 

-His most recent race may have been his race, running second in a minor turf stakes at Fair Grounds. Unfortunately, he was disqualified from the place for drifting out in the lane.

Still wondering how he won? Perhaps the result of the Louisiana Derby can be summed up best by Dorochenko who said, “You see, I brought not expensive horses but I make these horses expensive.”

If you are enthralled by this underdog story and think perhaps Hero of Order can parlay his big win into a good showing at this year’s Kentucky Derby, think again. Under the Derby rules, the only way Hero of Order can get into the race is by paying a $200,000 supplemental fee and hoping that less than 20 previously nominated horses enter. 

No Kentucky Derby, but who cares? Hero of Order just won a million dollar race. It just goes to show that on any given day; the little guys can win the big one. Just ask Goliath.


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Older Comments about 109-1 in the Louisiana Derby … It’s Hero of Order!...

Watch out Kentucky Derby!
ill be throwing out any one that ran at the fairgrounds.they cant be that good
Sorry that he won't be able to run in the Kentucky Derby because he is not nominated
i had hero of order, just want to say congrats to anyone else who got it. great handicapping friends! he came back to turn the tables.
Not sure what to think about a horse that's run 6 times in 3 months, 8 times as a 2yr old. And Mark Valeski keeps running into bad luck. It would be nice to see him run without these hindrances of one sort or another.
look how often this horse runs. And they want to run him again before Derby? They're going to run this horse into the ground.
Mark Valeski has a cut and bruise on his heel. He will be fine.
He was forth in the risen star and watch the race he runs hard all the way to the wire. his odds should have been 20-1
Is MV all right?
I just love all the medications available in American stables all around the country...
Looks like they just kept entering him in races at The Fairgrounds and he won the big one!
What I wonder is what was he even doing in the race?
i got it, he was 4th in the rising star. i thought hero of order should have been 10 or 15 to 1. it was a real chaos race. the public just lets things go. like the did with i'll have another.
No I can't see I saw this coming..Happy April Fools Day!!
Nice story..and a good hunch bet...the 99-1 for the 99th running... :)
I knew he would pull it off! Hero Of Order is my pick for the Kentucky Derby!
will he be elegable for the Preekness ?
TVG reporting Mark V. pulled up lame and had lost a shoe during the race.
$791,000 Rainbow Pick 6 on a $2.40 investment. $202 to win in the $1 million LA Derby. Who says this isn't a great sport?
I used to be Dorochenko's agent when he was a jockey in Northern California haha

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Meet Brian Zipse 

Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat, Forego, and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra, Zenyatta, and American Pharoah. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. 

The Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, Brian authored a daily column as Zipse at the Track, or ZATT for short, and added his editorial flare to the overall content of the website. Now a Senior Writer for HRN, Brian continues to contribute his thoughts on racing, as well as co-hosting the popular racing show, HorseCenter. A big supporter of thoroughbred aftercare, he serves as the President of The Exceller Fund.

Brian's work has also been published on several leading industry sites. He has consulted for leading contest site Derby Wars, is both a Hall of Fame and NTRA poll voter, and is a Vox Populi committee member. 

A horse owner and graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives just outside of Louisville with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra.


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