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Clyde Van Dusen
Sire Man o' War
Grandsire Fair Play
Dam Uncle's Lassie
Damsire Uncle
Sex Gelding
Foaled 1926
Country United States United States
Colour Chestnut
Breeder Herbert P. Gardner
Owner Herbert P. Gardner
Trainer Clyde Van Dusen
Record 42: 12-7-8
Earnings $122,402
Major wins
Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (1928)
Kentucky Derby (1929)

Clyde Van Dusen (foaled 1926) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse and the winner of the 1929 Kentucky Derby.

Although he was a son of the noted Man o' War, Clyde Van Dusen had an unimpressive appearance, being described as "a mere pony of a horse with a weedy frame."[1] Owner/breeder Herbert Gardner, an Amsterdam, New York businessman, named the horse after his trainer, former jockey Clyde Van Dusen.[2] Van Dusen said, "Clyde is a little horse, and that is why Mr. Gardner named him after me."[2]

Clyde Van Dusen had a successful two-year-old season, winning the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes, Orphanage Stakes, Valley Stakes, and Idle Hour Stakes.[3] As a three-year-old, he lost a Kentucky Derby prep race to the Derby favorite and eventual Horse of the Year, Blue Larkspur, and he drew the far outside #20 post position on Derby Day. His jockey, Linus McAtee, was startled by the horse's appearance and admitted to being "kind of scared" before the race.[1] However, the race was run in a downpour, and unlike Blue Larkspur, Clyde Van Dusen was wearing mud caulks on the sloppy track. As a result, he was never seriously threatened and won by 2 lengths, although his time of 2:10 4/5 was one of the slowest winning times in Derby history. After the race, Blue Larkspur's owner, Colonel Edward R. Bradley, called Clyde Van Dusen "the worst horse to win the Derby in twenty years."[1] Clyde Van Dusen was the seventh gelding to win the Kentucky Derby in the race's first 55 runnings. It would be 74 years before another gelding (Funny Cide) won the race.[1]

After winning the Derby, Clyde Van Dusen finished in the money in several stakes, but he never won another major race.[1] He retired in 1933 with a career record of 12 wins in 42 starts and $122,402 in earnings.[3] Following the horse's retirement, trainer Van Dusen acquired him and used him as an exercise pony.[2]

References

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