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Patch runs on the track throughout the morning training for the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on may 1, 2017 in Louisville, Kentucky.Andy Lyons / Getty Images
He may not have actually the ideal odds on the racetrack, yet when the equines pull the end of the door Saturday afternoon at the Kentucky Derby, intend the group at Churchill Downs to go wild because that a fan favorite: a one-eyed colt called Patch.
He galloped right into hearts throughout the nation when that earned a spot for the first time to run for the call prize, currently in that 143rd year.
Patch is to wash in the barn area after morning training because that the Kentucky Derby in ~ Churchill Downs on may 3, 2017 in Louisville, Kentucky.Michael Reaves / Getty Images
The opportunities of winning are slim because that the 3-year-old colt, however his trainer, Todd Pletcher, called NBC sporting activities that the horse has never been much more prepared — or sustained — for a race.
"It’s an intriguing story and also he’s a really, really cool equine to it is in around," Pletcher said. "He’s very laid back, really professional, an extremely straightforward to train.”
Patch qualified for the Kentucky Derby after finishing second in this year Louisiana race. Pletcher, who has two other steeds racing Saturday, praised Patch because that his professionalism and also determination as soon as he runs, despite his visual impairment.
Here space a couple of facts around the laborious equine:Why go Patch shed his eye?
The steed was born through both eyes, however what led the to lose his left one continues to be a mystery, his owner said.
"We come in one morning and his eye was a tiny bit swollen, and also he was tearing heavily," Pletcher said NBC Sports, adding that the equine may have actually fallen or run right into an object.
After aggressive therapy failed, vets removed Patch"s left eye over a year ago. However that hasn"t pulled the reins top top the colt.
"I mean, girlfriend can"t help but root for him. I mean, he"s overcome a lot," Pletcher called TODAY.Is spot the very first visually impaired steed to run in a Derby?
No. In fact, he"s not also the first partially-blind steed to gyeongju in the Kentucky Derby that Pletcher has trained. One more horse named Pollard"s Vision — who was named after the jockey the the lover racehorse Seabiscuit — perfect 17th in the 2004 derby.
According to historians, at the very least two other partially blind horses have actually competed: Cassaleria in 1982 and Storm in may in 2007.
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According come his trainers, the colt was currently named Patch before he lost his eye — and it definitely suits that now.