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Mr. Muscleman | Standardbred Trotter

 

Talk about a giant bargain. This three-time divisional winner, two-time Trotter of the Year and record-setting multi-millionaire sold as a yearling for just $2,000.

Just two starts into his two-year-old season, Mr. Muscleman caught the attention of his present owners, Adam Victor and Son Stable, who purchased “Muscles” privately for $150,000 and sent him to Noel Daly, one of the top trainers in harness racing.

As a three-year-old trotting gelding, Mr. Muscleman set a new earnings record

In the fall of 2003, Mr. Muscleman won four races in just three weeks. He was voted 2003 Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year.

In 2004, winning the Maple Leaf Trot and American-National Stakes helped Mr. Muscleman earn the title of Older Trotter of the Year in both the U.S. and Canada.

Even rival trainers were impressed:
“This horse is on top of his game; he’s one of a kind.
You’ve got to take your hat off to that horse.”
Trainer of Sand Vic


In 2005, five-year-old Mr. Muscleman set a record of 1:51.1 in the Titan Cup and Classic Series. In that year’s Breeders Crown Open Trot, a feisty “Muscles” showed his grit and determination. He was voted Trotter of the Year.

In 2007, seven-year-old Mr. Muscleman finished a close second in Sweden’s prestigious Elitloppe and won all four of his North American starts.

He had been a stoic athlete throughout a long and storied career, but wear and tear and persistent minor leg issues forced his retirement in 2008.

The members of the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame elected him to their Living Horse Hall of Fame in December 2016.

With 37 wins out of 69 starts, Mr. Muscleman finished off the board only 8 times in 6 seasons of racing.


Notes

  • Go for Gin was not named after the kind of gin found in a bottle. His dam (mother), is named Never Knock. In the card game of gin, a player signals a loss with a “knock.” So, if you’re not knocking, you’re still playing to win. . . and “going for gin.”
  • Go for Gin beat Tabasco Cat in the Kentucky Derby, but Tabasco Cat turned the tables, and won the next two Triple Crown races. Go for Gin missed winning the Triple Crown by a combined margin of only 2 ¾ lengths.
  • Chris McCarron rode Go for Gin for the first time just 10 days prior to his win in the Kentucky Derby. Watch his story here.
  • Before 1994, the last time the Kentucky Derby Track was listed as “sloppy” was 1948.

Notable Wins

1993: Remsen Stakes (G2), Chief's Crown Stakes, Preview Stakes
1994: Kentucky Derby (G1)


Mr. Muscleman Facts

PEDIGREE / Cormorant – Never Knock

FOALED: 1991 | RETIRED: 1995

HALL OF CHAMPIONS / 2011

NICKNAME / Gin

ATTRIBUTES / Dk Bay/Brown Gelding

EARNINGS / $1.38 million

RECORD / 19 starts, 5-7-2

HEIGHT / 16.2 hands

TRAINER / Nick Zito

JOCKEYS / Chris McCarron, Gary Stevens

BREEDER / Pamela Darmstadt Dupont

OWNER / W.J. Condren, Joseph Cornacchia