Fan Favorite Patch Not The First One-Eyed Derby Competitor

by | 05.04.2017 | 11:06pm
Patch

Although he isn't the highest point-earner in the Kentucky Derby field, Patch has accumulated a significant fan following on the backstretch of Churchill Downs. The Todd Pletcher trainee lost his left eye to an infection earlier in his career, but reportedly does not seem unsettled by his reduced vision.

The Washington Post reports Patch will not be the first horse to compete in the Derby with only one eye. The last one was Storm In May, who ran in the 2007 edition of the race.

According to the Post, it's unlikely Patch is completely unable to see on his left side. Horses' vision works differently than humans' and allows them to see about 350 degrees around their bodies. Each eye can see directly in front of the horse, but also a little to the opposite side of center, which means Patch can probably see some of what takes place to his left, although experts agree a jostle on that side may take him a little by surprise.

A retrospective study by the New Bolton Center found that the majority of horses who'd had an eye removed returned to their original profession after recovery.

Read more at The Washington Post

  • LongTimeEconomist

    There have been some pretty good one-eyed horses over the years. One I remember was Capt. Guggenheim’s One-Eyed King, who won several good stakes races back around 1960.

  • St Owen Racing

    One Eyed Romeo raced in So Cal in the late ’80’s and was a huge fan favorite. He was ultimately retired to CERF.

  • Cappy

    Didn’t Pletcher also train Pollard’s Vision? That horse was blind in one eye, although IIRC he still had the eye…he ran in the Derby a few years ago.

  • Ida Lee

    Well one thing for sure…Patch proves you don’t need all your body parts to be a Handsome Boy…and a fan favorite athlete….good luck Sweetheart…

  • ctgreyhound

    Patch is in a tough spot, but his story makes him a favorite in the hearts of many. That spells a winner no matter how you look at it. Looking for him to develop as a top 3 year old as the year develops.

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