By Mint Julep

1962 Kentucky Derby Winner Decidedly

1962 kentucky derby winner decidedly

In 1962, the Kentucky Derby was a race for the history books. Decidedly’s victory broke records and took everyone by storm. Jockey Bill Hartack, trainer Horatio Luro, owner El Peco Ranch, and breeder George A. Pope Jr. all played key roles in orchestrating Decidedly’s triumph at Churchill Downs. With a winning time of 2:00 2/5, this horse set a new standard that still stands today. Experience the intense competition, challenging track conditions, and lasting impact left behind by this incredible Thoroughbred champion as you step back in time to witness it all unfold at the legendary derby event!

The 1962 Kentucky Derby Winner Decidedly

Decidedly made history in the 88th Kentucky Derby on May 5, 1962. The horse clinched victory in record time, crossing the finish line at an impressive 2:00 and two-fifths. This solidified Decidedly’s place as a legend in racing.

Jockey Bill Hartack showed remarkable skill and finesse as he guided Decidedly to triumph at Churchill Downs. His strategic abilities and strong connection with the horse were key factors that led to their incredible win.

Thanks to trainer Horatio Luro’s expert guidance, Decidedly was well-prepared for race day success. Luro’s expertise and careful training regimen played a crucial role in molding Decidedly into a champion thoroughbred capable of winning the prestigious Kentucky Derby.

Owner El Peco Ranch celebrated their prized possession, Decidedly, galloping across the finish line first. Their unwavering support for horse racing and dedication to developing top equine talent culminated in this unforgettable moment of success.

Breeder George A Pope Jr.’s commitment to breeding excellence paid off with Decidedly’s resounding victory at the 1962 Kentucky Derby. His focus on producing superior bloodlines paved the way for future generations of elite racehorses inspired by Decidedly’s legacy.”

Early Life and Background of Decidedly

Decidedly stood out in the elite world of horse racing due to his Californian roots. The horse was bred by George A. Pope Jr., infusing a hint of West Coast style into his lineage and adding an interesting twist to his journey towards Derby success.

This California colt wasn’t your average competitor; he had a spirited nature and graceful presence on the track that caught the eye of many experienced fans. Decidedly wasn’t just full of potential – he radiated raw talent waiting to shine on the grand stage at Churchill Downs.

Early on, Owner El Peco Ranch saw something special in Decidedly, entrusting trainer Horatio Luro with shaping this young talent into a future champion. With careful guidance and strategic training, Luro refined Decidedly’s skills, getting him ready for the challenging path leading up to the Kentucky Derby.

Jockey Bill Hartack played a crucial role in Decidedly’s story, forming an unbreakable bond with the spirited colt as they raced towards their destiny at Churchill Downs. The partnership between Hartack and Decidedly thrived on mutual trust and unwavering determination, setting them up for their historic win.

As luck would have it, everything fell into place perfectly for Decidedly on that memorable day in May 1962 at Churchill Downs. It showcased not only his exceptional abilities but also cemented his legacy as a California-bred underdog who overcame odds to triumph at the prestigious Kentucky Derby.

The Pros & Cons of Racing Legends


  1. Racing icons motivate upcoming athletes of the future.

  2. They demonstrate the highest level of skill and commitment in their field.

  3. Their accomplishments add to the vibrant history and customs of racing.

  4. Racing legends frequently evolve into cultural symbols, going beyond just their sport.

  5. They offer exhilarating entertainment and thrills for fans all around the globe.


  1. Current athletes often feel overwhelmed by the expectations to live up to their legendary status.

  2. Some racing legends have been involved in controversial or questionable behavior outside of the track.

  3. The competition to achieve legendary status can drive athletes towards unethical practices in the sport.

  4. Teams and support staff may find their collective efforts overshadowed by the focus on individual legends.

  5. Placing racing legends on a pedestal sometimes creates unrealistic expectations, leading to disappointment.

Jockey Bill Hartack’s Role in Victory

In 1962, Bill Hartack and his bond with Decidedly captivated audiences. His skillful handling of the spirited colt at Churchill Downs was like a beautifully choreographed dance. With a strong grip on the reins and deep understanding of his horse, Hartack maneuvered through competitors like an artist creating a masterpiece.

Hartack’s strategic moves during the race showcased his tactical brilliance and unwavering focus under pressure. As they raced towards the finish line, it felt as though they were moving in perfect sync towards victory. The crowd cheered as Hartack urged Decidedly forward, crossing the finish line with unmatched finesse.

The partnership between Bill Hartack and Decidedly exemplified teamwork at its best – where man and horse united to chase greatness together. Their win at the 1962 Kentucky Derby remains a symbol of skill, determination, and equestrian artistry that goes beyond mere competition – etching their names forever in history books.

Trainer Horatio Luro’s Expertise

Trainer Horatio Luro skillfully guided Decidedly in preparation for the challenging Kentucky Derby. Luro’s expertise in conditioning and developing top-tier racehorses for major competitions like this iconic event shone through as he meticulously attended to every detail, showcasing his intuitive understanding of each horse’s abilities. His pivotal role in shaping Decidedly into a strong contender on the racetrack is undeniable.

Horatio Luro’s sharp eye for talent and strategic training methods undoubtedly played a significant part in Decidedly’s outstanding performance at Churchill Downs. By instilling discipline, confidence, and ensuring peak physical condition in his equine athletes, Luro set them up for success not just at the Kentucky Derby but throughout their illustrious racing careers.

Renowned within elite horse racing circles as a masterful mentor with an exceptional track record of producing champions, Horatio Luro brought out the best in both horses and jockeys under his guidance. He was able to form strong connections with these majestic animals that went beyond mere training; it was based on trust, respect, and mutual understanding.

The legacy of Trainer Horatio Luro goes far beyond individual victories; it embodies a deep passion for horseracing that resonates through generations of enthusiasts who recognize his enduring impact on the sport. By harnessing Decidedly’s potential and leading him to victory at the 1962 Kentucky Derby, Luro solidified his reputation as one of history’s most revered trainers whose expertise continues to inspire awe among fans worldwide.

Kentucky Derby 1962: Top Finishers Snapshot

Finished Post Horse Jockey Trainer Owner Time / behind
1st 3 Decidedly Bill Hartack Horatio Luro El Peco Ranch (George A. Pope Jr.) 2:00 2/5
2nd 10 Roman Line Jimmy Combest Vester R. Wright T. Alie Grissom
3rd 9 Ridan Manuel Ycaza LeRoy Jolley Mrs. Moody Jolley, Ernest Woods, John L. Greer
4th 4 Sir Ribot Raymond York Frank E. Childs Mr. & Mrs. Fred Turner Jr.
5th 1 Sunrise County Bill Shoemaker Thomas Joseph Kelly Townsend B. Martin
6th 8 Crimson Satan Billy J. Phelps Gordon R. Potter Crimson King Farm
7th 5 Green Hornet Johnny Longden Wally Dunn Dorothy Dorsett Brown
8th 15 Good Fight Ray Broussard N. J. Moran F and B Farms
9th 2 Admiral’s Voyage Braulio Baeza Charles R. Parke Fred W. Hooper
10th 6 Royal Attack Edward Burns William J. Hirsch Neil S. McCarthy
11th 14 Touch Bar John R. Rivera J. L. Davis Estopinal-Arnaud
12th 13 Lee Town William Carstens H. L. Mckissick J. V. P. Stables
13th 7 Mister Pitt William Harmatz Stephen A. DiMauro Golden Triangle Stables
14th 12 Sharp Count Eugene Curry L. G. Jeffrion Reverie Knoll Farm
15th 11 Prego Larry Adams Thomas Mercer Waller Robert Lehman

Owner El Peco Ranch’s Contribution

Back in 1962, at the El Peco Ranch owned by George A. Pope Jr., a talented California-bred colt named Decidedly was being groomed for success at Churchill Downs. This win wasn’t just a big deal for Decidedly – it also showed off El Peco Ranch’s skill in breeding and training top racehorses.

Thanks to George A. Pope Jr.’s keen eye for talent and his dedication to excellence, the stage was set for Decidedly’s impressive journey to victory at the Kentucky Derby. By carefully choosing bloodlines and providing expert care and training plans overseen by renowned horseman Horatio Luro, El Peco Ranch proved itself as a leading establishment in the world of horse racing.

George A. Pope Jr.’s steadfast focus on producing high-quality thoroughbreds paid off when Decidedly crossed the finish line at Churchill Downs with jockey Bill Hartack guiding him skillfully. The mix of passion, expertise, and smart decision-making shown by Owner El Peco Ranch embodies what it takes to succeed in horse racing – where determination and belief can turn dreams into reality.

Track Surface and Conditions

The track at Churchill Downs was perfectly groomed, providing a solid yet forgiving surface for the horses. Bill Hartack, Decidedly’s jockey, expertly guided his horse around the course with skill and precision, using every advantage to push towards victory. The condition of the track played a crucial role in determining the race’s outcome, highlighting the importance of smart decisions made by both rider and horse.

In 1962 on that significant day, Horatio Luro showcased his expertise as Decidedly’s trainer under the sunny Kentucky sky. His deep understanding of how track conditions could affect performance allowed him to adjust Decidedly’s training routine leading up to the Derby. Luro’s strategic approach ensured that his prized colt was not only physically but also mentally ready for Churchill Downs’ unique dirt surface challenges.

Decidedly’s journey to success on that historic Derby day was supported by El Peco Ranch owner’s unwavering backing. Their dedication to excellence reflected in their investments in top-notch training facilities and resources showed their confidence in Decidedly becoming a true champion-to-be. Their foresight paved the way for an unforgettable demonstration of equine skill amidst cheers from captivated spectators.

George A. Pope Jr., as breeder, saw his hard work pay off when Decidedly triumphantly crossed the finish line first at Churchill Downs – marking his place in racing history books with unmatched grace and speed on that memorable spring afternoon.

Derby Champion's Fascinating Tales and Legends

  1. ### The Amazing Stories and Myths of Derby Champions

  2. **Decidedly Shocks the World**: Back in 1962, Decidedly pulled off a huge upset by winning the Kentucky Derby at odds of 9-1, stunning everyone with his unexpected triumph.

  3. **Trainer Horatio Luro's Winning Strategy**: The legendary Horatio Luro trained Decidedly using a one-of-a-kind approach that helped the colt hit his peak at just the right time for the big race.

  4. **Jockey Bill Hartack Makes History**: Hall of Famer jockey Bill Hartack rode Decidedly to victory, making history as he clinched his fifth Kentucky Derby win aboard this talented colt.

  5. **Life after Victory for Decidedly**: Following his Kentucky Derby win, Decidedly enjoyed a successful racing career, raking in over $318,000 in prize money and securing his spot in racing lore.

  6. **Decidedly's Enduring Legacy**: Even decades later, fans still recall with awe how Decidedly defied expectations at the 1962 Kentucky Derby – an unforgettable moment that captures the thrilling unpredictability of horse racing like no other.

Record-setting Time by Decidedly

In 1962, Decidedly made history at the Kentucky Derby by setting a new record with a winning time of 2:00 2/5. This remarkable achievement stood out as an impressive feat in the prestigious horse racing event’s history, firmly placing Decidedly among its notable winners.

Bill Hartack skillfully rode Decidedly to victory in this historic race through his expert handling and strategic tactics. His partnership with trainer Horatio Luro showcased their synchrony and skill on the day of the competition.

The owner El Peco Ranch celebrated Decidedly’s triumph as their prized thoroughbred made its mark in racing greatness. Their commitment to nurturing top-tier talent paid off handsomely during that unforgettable Derby afternoon.

Breeder George A. Pope Jr.’s meticulous attention to bloodlines and genetic potential was evident in Decidedly’s groundbreaking performance. Pope’s legacy of breeding excellence was validated through this significant win at Churchill Downs—a testament to his vision and expertise in shaping champions.

Other Contenders and Final Placements

At the 1962 Kentucky Derby, Roman Line and jockey Bill Shoemaker gave it their all to clinch second place behind Decidedly. Throughout the race, this dynamic pair impressed with their skill and determination on the famous Churchill Downs track. The thrilling showdown between Decidedly and Roman Line added an extra dose of excitement to an already intense event.

Ridan, ridden by Hall of Fame jockey Eddie Arcaro, secured third place in a fiercely competitive Derby that kept fans at the edge of their seats. Arcaro’s smart racing strategies and unwavering focus guided Ridan admirably amidst tough competition from other top horses. The battle for dominance among these elite racers showcased high-stakes horse racing at its best.

Sir Ribot and Sunrise County completed the top five positions in a field brimming with talent and tenacity. These skilled competitors made a lasting impression on this historic race by showing resilience and speed as they raced for victory alongside other contenders. Every stride towards the finish line represented not just individual excellence but also shared sportsmanship within this thrilling display of equestrian prowess at the esteemed Kentucky Derby.

Winning Breeder George A. Pope Jr.

Breeder George A. Pope Jr.’s keen eye for quality and his dedication to breeding racehorses were clear in Decidedly’s bloodline. This showed his skill in choosing superior mating pairs that could produce outstanding offspring capable of winning races like the Kentucky Derby.

Pope’s love for breeding top-tier Thoroughbreds led to Decidedly’s impressive victory at Churchill Downs, highlighting his understanding of pedigree lines and genetic potential in creating champions with both speed and stamina needed for success on the racetrack.

With careful planning and high standards, Pope set the stage for Decidedly’s win on that memorable day in 1962. This proves that a visionary breeder plays a crucial role behind every champion racehorse, ensuring excellence and leaving a lasting legacy in horse racing.

Legacy and Impact on Racing History

The 1962 Kentucky Derby win by Decidedly was a major turning point in horse racing history. It not only established him as one of the top competitors in the sport but also showcased his exceptional skills on the track. Guided by jockey Bill Hartack, Decidedly set new records and amazed spectators with his speed and grace as he crossed the finish line.

Trainer Horatio Luro’s talent spotting abilities and strategic training methods played a crucial role in molding Decidedly into a champion racehorse. Owner El Peco Ranch’s unwavering commitment to nurturing Decidedly from an early age bore fruit on that memorable Derby day. Breeder George A. Pope Jr.’s meticulous attention to bloodlines and genetic heritage laid the groundwork for Decidedly’s success, highlighting how every detail counts when breeding top-notch racehorses.

Together, these key figures in the world of horse racing created an unforgettable moment that continues to inspire future generations of equestrian enthusiasts worldwide. This cemented Decidedly’s legacy not just as a one-time winner but as a timeless symbol of triumph against all odds.


1. Who was the jockey who rode Decidedly to victory at the 1962 Kentucky Derby?

In the 1962 Kentucky Derby, Jockey Bill Hartack skillfully rode Decidedly to a stunning win, demonstrating his expertise and strong bond with the talented colt.

2. Which renowned trainer prepared Decidedly for his triumphant run at Churchill Downs in 1962?

The famous trainer Horatio Luro worked tirelessly to get Decidedly ready for his big race at Churchill Downs in 1962. He showed off his amazing skills and knowledge by helping the talented colt win the Kentucky Derby.

3. What was the name of the owner of Decidedly, whose colors were carried to glory on that fateful Derby day?

In 1962, George A. Pope Jr.'s El Peco Ranch proudly showcased Decidedly's colors as they triumphed on the eventful day of the Kentucky Derby.

4. Where did George A. Pope Jr., the breeder of Decidedly, establish his successful thoroughbred breeding operation?

George A. Pope Jr. started his thriving horse breeding business at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky, where he bred the successful racehorse Decidedly.

5. How did Decidedly's winning time at the 1962 Kentucky Derby compare to previous champions?

In the 1962 Kentucky Derby, Decidedly won with a remarkable time of 2:00 flat. This not only ensured his victory but also broke a new track record, confirming his status as one of the top champions in this renowned race.

6. What distinguished qualities or strategies set Decidedly apart from his competitors during his historic Derby win?

In 1962, Decidedly made history by winning the Kentucky Derby. Jockey Bill Hartack's exceptional skill, trainer Horatio Luro's expertise, and George A. Pope Jr.'s ownership of El Peco Ranch all played a vital role in this victory. Their collaboration led to a flawless performance that showcased speed, stamina, and tactical precision – qualities that set Decidedly apart from the competition at the time.