May 06, 2011
Tim Tebow may have moved on from the Florida Gators, but his iconic legend lived on at Churchill Downs on Thursday.
Janet Shulthise, a racing horse owner from Kentucky, named her entry in Thursday's maiden claiming race at Churchill Downs "Tebow Gator." Even the horse's silks were orange and blue.
But that's where the similarities ended.
Unfortunately for Shulthise, her horse was not nearly as good as its namesake as, according to the results for Race 6, Tebow Gator drifted through the stretch and faded. The horse finished fifth by more than eight lengths. If you're not a big horse racing fan, just know that that's a lot.
Shulthise's previous horse, Starspangled Gator, actually won at Churchill Downs in 2007 thanks to some excellent riding by famed jockey Calvin Borel. Perhaps the horse's effort was homage to the basketball national championship or a precursor to football's national title in 2008.
Of course, after Thursday's race, Tebow Gator teared up and gave a heart-felt speech to the crowd:
"To the fans and everybody in Gator Nation, I'm sorry. I'm extremely sorry... You will never see any horse in the entire country race as hard as I will race the rest of the season…"
C'mon, you had to know a "promise speech" comment was coming.
Graham Watson is a regular contributor to Dr. Saturday. Follow her on Twitter: @Yahoo_Graham