By Mint Julep

Proud Clarion Before and Beyond the Kentucky Derby

proud clarion 1967 kentucky derby winner

In this short summary, we’ll follow Proud Clarion’s remarkable journey from his prestigious breeding at Darby Dan Farm to his unexpected victory in the 1967 Kentucky Derby. Discover how this unlikely underdog transformed into a racing sensation, not only clinching a historic win at the Derby but also making a significant mark as a prolific sire shaping the future of American Thoroughbred breeding. Learn about the lasting impact Proud Clarion had on horse racing both on and off the track, securing his place in the history books of this sport.

Early Life and Family Background

Proud Clarion was born on January 19, 1964, at the famous Darby Dan Farm in Lexington, Kentucky. Bred by John W. Galbreath, this colt came from a long line of champion horses. His father was Hail To Reason, who had been named U.S. Champion Two-Year-Old Colt in 1960.

With Royal Charger as his grandfather and Djeddah as his grandmother through Breath O’Morn’s lineage, Proud Clarion inherited a mix of speed and stamina that made him stand out on the racetrack. People could see the influence of his great ancestors every time he ran.

Growing up on the lush pastures of Darby Dan Farm where many legends were born before him; Proud Clarion showed both grace and strength from an early age. He received excellent care from those who saw his potential even before he started racing.

As Proud Clarion got older each day, breeders and fans across the country eagerly awaited to see what this young talent could achieve—his bloodlines revealed qualities like determination and spirit found in champions of olden times.

The story behind Proud Clarion’s heritage painted an exciting picture filled with promise that would soon come alive on racetracks all over America. With every step he took reflecting tales passed down through generations combined with dreams yet to be fulfilled; this colt seemed destined to make history among legendary racehorses forevermore.

Racing Career

When Proud Clarion was a two-year-old, he didn’t show much promise and had very little earnings. However, things turned around for him when he turned three and started winning sprint races leading up to the 1967 Kentucky Derby. Despite being considered an underdog with odds of over 30:1, he surprised everyone by winning the Derby by one length in the third-fastest time ever recorded at that point.

He also managed to finish third in the Preakness Stakes and fourth in the Belmont Stakes.

The Pros & Cons of Equine Racing Legends


  1. Horse racing has a long and impressive history that continues to influence the present.

  2. The sport offers thrilling competition and entertainment, drawing in audiences worldwide.

  3. It encourages the development of top-tier horse athletes through strategic breeding practices.

  4. Fans get to witness expert horsemanship skills and innovative training methods on display.

  5. The industry drives significant economic activity within the equestrian world.

  6. Watching these majestic animals compete inspires respect for tradition and admiration for their champions.


  1. Horses and jockeys face a high risk of getting injured.

  2. People are worried about how animals are treated in the industry and their well-being.

  3. Racehorses may be overbred and exploited.

  4. Betting on horse racing can lead to addiction problems.

  5. Large racetracks and facilities have a negative impact on the environment.

  6. Some people criticize how elite racehorses are turned into commercial products.

Stud Record

Proud Clarion made a huge impact as a stallion at Darby Dan Farm. His offspring, like the impressive Proud Birdie, won big races such as the Marlboro Cup, showing off their sire’s amazing genes. With more than 30 stakes race winners to his credit, Proud Clarion proved himself not only as a champion on the track but also as a dad who passed down his winning ways.

The legacy of Proud Clarion lived on through many generations of racehorses, proving his lasting influence in shaping Thoroughbred racing. His descendants inherited his competitive spirit and commitment to excellence, carrying on the same drive that led him to victory on famous racetracks. Each win by one of Proud Clarion’s kids was proof of his talent both as an individual racer and as an inspiration for future champions.

Thanks to careful breeding plans and smart pairings arranged by breeders eager to tap into Proud Clarion’s impressive genes, he left a mark on pedigrees worldwide. His success spread far and wide, touching many lives in horse racing—a tribute to this brave competitor turned legendary dad whose legacy still resonates with fans and pros today.

Pedigree Analysis

Proud Clarion came from a long line of famous racehorses, making him a standout in the world of horse racing. His ancestors like Turn-To and Djebel had passed on their exceptional talent to him, which was evident when he hit the track. His father, Hail To Reason, gave him his speed and endurance genes, while his grandfather Djeddah added finesse and grace to Proud Clarion’s genetic makeup.

Watching Proud Clarion sprint down the homestretch felt like witnessing history being made with each powerful step he took. He carried his prestigious heritage proudly in every race he ran, captivating spectators with his determination and natural skill. It wasn’t just about winning for him; it was also about honoring a legacy that had been built by generations of champions before him—a responsibility he handled with remarkable composure.

After retiring as a racer, Proud Clarion continued to make waves through his offspring who inherited not only his physical abilities but also his unstoppable drive. Each new generation showed shades of their sire—whether it was an unyielding desire to win or an insatiable thirst for victory. The legacy left behind by Proud Clarion went beyond mere numbers; it told a story of excellence that echoed throughout Thoroughbred breeding history.

Looking into Proud Clarion’s family tree reveals how past champion bloodlines were carefully combined to create this magnificent horse—an embodiment of grace under pressure and unmatched skill on the racetrack. By analyzing pedigrees closely, we can see how individual achievements are connected across generations in pursuit of greatness and lasting glory on the revered turf where humans and horses come together in competition.

Champion Stallion: Proud Clarion's Racing Legacy

Attribute Information
Name Proud Clarion
Sire Hail To Reason
Grandsire Turn-To
Dam Breath O’Morn
Damsire Djeddah
Sex Stallion
Foaled January 19, 1964
Died December 17, 1981
Country United States
Colour Bay
Breeder John W. Galbreath
Owner Darby Dan Farm
Trainer Loyd Gentry, Jr.
Record 25: 6-4-2
Earnings $218,730
Major wins Roamer Handicap (1967), Triple Crown wins: Kentucky Derby (1967)

Legacy Beyond Racing

Proud Clarion’s impact as a stallion was felt strongly in the world of Thoroughbred breeding, leaving an unforgettable legacy for future generations. His foals displayed exceptional athleticism and inherited his competitive drive, carrying on his winning spirit in horse racing circles. The bloodlines he passed down embodied the essence of a true champion, ensuring that his name would live on through not just history books but also the performances of his descendants.

Away from the racetrack, Proud Clarion’s offspring continued to amaze fans and experts with their skills on different courses across various eras. Their victories spoke volumes about their lineage and served as proof of Proud Clarion’s genetic influence on the sport. Each successful race connected back to him, honoring both his memory and lasting impact on shaping today’s top Thoroughbreds.

Looking back at Proud Clarion’s journey after retirement sheds light on how one outstanding athlete can shape an entire industry for years to come. His descendants became leaders in a new era of talent, passing down not only physical traits but also unique qualities setting them apart from others. With each new generation bred from this prestigious line, traces of Proud Clarion’s determination and grace continue—showcasing a heritage built upon resilience, ambition, and unmatched skill.

The story written by Proud Clarion goes beyond mere statistics or race wins; it is a tale steeped in tradition yet evolving with time. As each descendant lined up at starting gates worldwide, there was an undeniable sense of connection—a tribute to those who paved the way before them worth emulating. In many ways, every victory achieved by one of these descendants paid homage not just to their individual talents but also honored the timeless legacy left behind by this extraordinary stallion.

Even now when we witness moments of brilliance at races or marvel at achievements made by equine champions pushing boundaries once deemed impossible—we catch glimpses into what Proud Clarion offered us all: hope encapsulated within thundering hooves; dreams soaring amidst clouds kicked up; legacies unfolding like chapters in an epic novel where each character plays out their role guided by whispers from past generations.

Impact on Breeding Industry

Proud Clarion’s legacy in Thoroughbred breeding continues to resonate through the years like a classic tune. His impact as a stallion goes beyond just producing champions; it’s about passing down a relentless drive to succeed on the racetrack to his offspring. With horses like Proud Birdie achieving success, Proud Clarion’s influence is more than numbers – it encapsulates what makes an exceptional sire.

It’s exciting to see how certain bloodlines shape the future of horse racing, with Proud Clarion standing out among these influential figures. Through his genetic contributions, he passed on a mix of speed and stamina that set his descendants apart in competitive races. Breeders aiming for excellence sought after this prestigious lineage, hoping to replicate or even exceed the achievements seen in horses bred from this legendary stallion.

Proud Clarion didn’t just rack up wins; he left an enduring mark on pedigrees across the racing world. The ripple effect of his genes can still be felt today as current champions carry traces of his exceptional traits within them. Enthusiastic breeders delve into records and ancestry charts, tracing back to where it all started – with one remarkable horse who forever changed breeding history.

In every stride taken by those descended from Proud Clarion beats the heart and soul of a champion – showcasing his lasting impact on shaping future stars in horse racing. As breeders search for that special spark that sets their foals apart, they often find themselves drawn back to this foundational lineage deeply rooted in past triumphs yet ever-present in each thundering hoofbeat heard around racetracks worldwide today.

Unveiling the Enigmatic Lore of Proud Clarion

  1. ### Exploring the Mysterious Story of Proud Clarion

  2. **Where the Name Came From**: Proud Clarion got its name from a medieval trumpet that was used to announce important events and ceremonies. This symbolizes how the horse heralded victories on the racetrack.

  3. **Going for Triple Crown Glory**: Back in 1967, Proud Clarion scored a win at the Kentucky Derby, putting him in contention for the prestigious Triple Crown title. While he didn't clinch victory in subsequent races, his Derby triumph cemented his place in racing history.

  4. **Rise of an Underdog**: Despite being seen as a long shot with odds of 30-1 during the 1967 Kentucky Derby, Proud Clarion defied expectations by claiming victory against favored competitors. This unexpected win only added to his allure and reputation within horseracing circles.

  5. **The Legendary Jockey's Impact**: Bobby Ussery, a Hall of Fame jockey, guided Proud Clarion to glory at the Kentucky Derby race. Their teamwork and Ussery's exceptional skills played key roles in their success story, further building up Proud Clarion's mysterious appeal.

  6. **A Lasting Legacy**: Beyond just winning races, Proud Clarion left behind a remarkable legacy by producing several successful offspring who also made names for themselves on track with notable wins – ensuring that his influence would endure through generations of racing fans.

Retirement and Demise

After a successful career as a stud, Proud Clarion passed away in 1981 at Spendthrift Farm in Lexington, Kentucky. His death marked the end of an era for many fans who had admired his racing skills and celebrated his offspring’s achievements on the track. Despite no longer being with us, Proud Clarion’s legacy lived on through the generations he fathered, each one inheriting some of his unstoppable spirit and competitive nature.

Proud Clarion didn’t just win races; he embodied resilience, determination, and an unwavering passion for excellence. When news spread about his passing within the horse world community, tributes poured in from admirers who were moved by both his athletic abilities and breeding success. The sound of Proud Clarion’s powerful hooves still seemed to echo across fields and racetracks around the globe—a lasting reminder of the impact he made during his lifetime.

In stories recounting legendary horses throughout history books, Proud Clarion shines as a symbol of inspiration—a horse whose name became synonymous with greatness both on and off the track. Though physically gone, his influence continued to shape future champions yet to come—each victory they achieved honoring the groundwork laid by this extraordinary stallion. Every step taken by descendants carrying traces of their ancestor’s bloodline carried an important message: “Proud Clarion lives on.”

Commemoration and Recognition

In 1967, Proud Clarion won the Kentucky Derby with his incredible speed and determination. This victory was not just a personal win but also a significant moment in American horse racing history, putting him among the few elite horses who have triumphed at Churchill Downs on that legendary first Saturday in May.

Proud Clarion’s legacy lives on through his offspring in breeding circles. His descendants continue to show his winning spirit and athletic abilities. As a sire, he passed on valuable traits to future generations of racehorses, shaping Thoroughbred breeding year after year. His genetic impact can still be seen worldwide within pedigrees, proving the enduring influence of this true champion.

With each stride down the homestretch and every foal born carrying part of his lineage, Proud Clarion remains an emblem of excellence in both racing and breeding worlds. The echoes of his hooves thundering down past racetracks linger with those who admire equine greatness—a reminder that legends are created not only by their actions but by being immortalized through them.

Beyond awards and trophies, stories about Proud Clarion are shared from one generation to another—told around firelit stables or discussed over morning coffee as dawn breaks. He represents more than just victories; he embodies resilience, love for competition, and unwavering dedication to pushing beyond limits set by others or oneself.

As we remember moments like the cheering crowds when he crossed the finish line or seeing pride shine brightly in his eyes after siring another promising foal—it is clear that Proud Clarion is more than just a horse; he left an unforgettable mark on history’s canvas against which we measure greatness anew with every hoofbeat resonating throughout centuries gone by.


1. What made Proud Clarion's victory in the 1967 Kentucky Derby so remarkable and memorable?

In 1967, Proud Clarion pulled off a remarkable win at the Kentucky Derby. Despite being seen as an underdog, he defied the odds and showed incredible determination and courage to secure a surprising victory at Churchill Downs.

2. How did Proud Clarion's success on the track translate into a distinguished career as a sire?

Proud Clarion's wins on the racetrack, like his amazing upset at the 1967 Kentucky Derby, set him up for a successful career as a sire. He passed down his outstanding speed, endurance, and determination to many future Thoroughbred champions.

3. Can you elaborate on Proud Clarion's impact on the American horse racing industry post-retirement?

Proud Clarion made a huge impact on the American horse racing industry after retiring. His successful offspring continued his legacy, leaving a lasting impression on the sport for many generations to come. These talented descendants brought their speed and grace to the tracks, carrying on Proud Clarion's influence in an impressive way.

4. What distinguished Proud Clarion from other notable Thoroughbreds of his era, both in terms of pedigree and racing style?

Proud Clarion stood out as a top Thoroughbred of his time with an impressive family lineage that combined Bold Ruler and Hail to Reason. His fearless style of leading races made him unique, showing off both speed and endurance on the track.

5. How did Proud Clarion's bloodline influence future generations of racehorses, and are there any notable descendants carrying on his legacy today?

Proud Clarion's bloodline made a lasting impact on upcoming generations of racehorses. Horses like Seattle Slew and Affirmed continue to showcase his legacy with outstanding performances both on the track and in breeding, keeping his influence alive today.

6. In what ways did Proud Clarion contribute to shaping the landscape of American horse racing during his time?

Proud Clarion made a lasting impression on American horse racing when he pulled off a remarkable upset win at the 1967 Kentucky Derby. His determination and skill on the racetrack not only shone through but also had a significant influence as he went on to sire successful offspring, passing down his exceptional genes to future champion bloodlines.