Home  --> "Giacomo"

$600.00 Canvas Print by Robert Clark.

Canvas Size is 24 X 30, image size is smaller.

Giacomo canvas painting

Grey or Roan Colt by Holy Bull-Set Them Free by Stop the Music
Owners: Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Moss
Trainer: John Shirreffs

Last Start: Belmont S (G1)
Next Start: Strub S. (G2)
Horsehats.com FastFact: Giacomo is by Holy Bull, beaten favorite in the 1994 Kentucky Derby and that season’s Horse of the Year.

At 2
2nd Hollywood Futurity G1

At 3

3rd Sham S



Giacomo, named for rock star Sting's son, sang an upset tune in the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) today at Churchill Downs.
Sent off at odds of 50-1, Mike Smith guided Giacomo to the surprising victory before the second largest crowd in Kentucky Derby history. The exacta was huge as another longshot, Closing Argument, ran second. The gimmick paid $9,814.80.

The superfecta was as staggering as the finish, paying $1,728,507 with Afleet Alex third and Don't Get Mad fourth. The trifecta paid $133,184.60.

"We never had him ready like we did today," winning rider Mike Smith said. Indeed, Giacomo had run in very good company but always come up just a bit short. But the big stretch at Churchill Downs proved to his liking, the son of Holy Bull out of the Stop the Music mare Set Them Free rolling past Closing Argument once he got clear sailing.

Giacomo was winning just the second race of his life. He broke his maiden in his second start last fall at Santa Anita and then ran third in an allowance race before running second in the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I) to Declan's Moon.

Declan's Moon was the early Derby favorite until he was injured.

Giacomo had made three starts this year at three: he ran third in the Sham Stakes, finished second in the San Felipe (gr. II), and was fourth, beaten just two lengths, in the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I). Smith has ridden him in all seven of his starts.

Giacomo paid $102.60, $45.80, and $19.80 and Closing Argument returned $70 and $24.80. Afleet Alex paid $4.60. It was the second highest price in Kentucky Derby history, behind only the $184.90 returned by Doneraile in 1913.

After fractions of :22.28, :45.38, :1.09.59, and 1:35.88, Giacomo crossed the wire after 10 furlongs in 2:02.75. The winning margin was a half length, with Closing Argument another half length ahead of Afleet Alex.

Giacomo is owned by Jerry and Ann Moss, who bred him in Kentucky. Jerry Moss founded A&M Records with Herb Alpert and has produced recordings for many top starts, among them Sting. The dam is named for a Sting song.

The Derby winner is trained by John Shirreffs. Both Shirreffs and Smith were winning their first Derbys.

The complete order of finish: Giacomo, Closing Argument, Afleet Alex, Don't Get Mad, Buzzards Bay, Wilko, Bellamy Road, Andromeda's Hero, Flower Alley, High Fly, Greeley's Galaxy, Coin Silver, Greater Good, Noble Causeway, Sun King, Spanish Chestnut, Sort It Out, Going Wild, Bandini, and High Limit.

The attendance on a beautiful day in Louisville, Ky., was 156,435, not surprising with not only the nice weather but a 20-horse field and a new Churchill Downs facility. The day before, a record crowd of 111,243 saw Summerly win the Kentucky Oaks (gr. I).

The largest crowd ever to witness the Derby was for the 100th running of the race in 1974. That day, 163,628 saw Cannonade win the Run for the Roses.

There was certainly some irony in that Giacomo is by Holy Bull, who was favored in the 1994 Derby when he was ridden by Smith. Holy Bull ran 12th in a 14-horse field. Interestingly, that same year the Mosses won the Oaks with Sardula.

Smith had previously finished third three times in the Derby including Lion Heart last year. He also was second on Proud Citizen in 2002 and Prairie Bayou in 1993.

Giacomo had an interesting trip in the Derby, having to make several moves and work his way up from far back in the pack.

"I had to ease him out in the first turn and get around some horses," Smith said. "I worked my way back in there and got bumped around a little. I saw a seam and he runs good on the outside, he just kept grinding and wouldn't stop until he got him (Closing Argument)."

Nick Zito saddled five horses in the Derby for five different owners but favored Bellamy Road, who checked in seventh was his best finish. Andromeda's Hero ran eighth, High Fly finished 10th, Noble Causeway was 14th, and Sun King ran 15th.

"I didn't see a lot of the race because I was on the ground floor," Shirreffs said. "The fractions were fast, he was wide around the first turn. I didn't pick him up until the three-sixteenths pole. I saw the white shadow roll, and I thought we had a chance to hit the board. Then I said to myself, 'We might win it.' "

Shirreffs said he first thought Giacomo might be a Kentucky Derby horse when he ran second to Declan's Moon. "When he ran second to Declan's Moon and the way he loomed up there, I knew we had a horse of high caliber," he said.

The Mosses have been in racing since 1970 when they started with claiming horses. They bought the dam for $45,000 and she won five of 12 starts and earned $173,275. Her third foal was a Holy Bull filly named Styler, who won two of her four races. Jerry Moss said because they liked Styler, they decided to send the mare back to Holy Bull. In the meantime, Set Them Free, produced a filly by Derby winner Sea Hero named Sea Jewel who won two races and was multiple graded stakes placed.

Set Them Free had a colt by Swain in 2003 and this year produced a colt by Pleasant Tap.

There had been some knocking of the California horses in this year's Derby but horses coming out of the Santa Anita Derby ran first, fourth, and fifth. Giacomo is the 15th horse to win the Derby having had his final prep in the Santa Anita Derby.

Shirreffs, who took out his training license in 1978 and now operates a public stable in California, was saddling his first Derby starter. This is the third year a trainer sending out his first Derby horse won the race, following Barclay Tagg and Funny Cide in 2003 and John Servis with Smarty Jones last year.


Official hats and merchandise for Kentucky Derby winner Giacomo. © 2005 HorseHats.com. All Rights Reserved.