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An Irish Run For The Roses

May 5, 2014, 3:08 PM EDT

Mostly everybody watches horse racing once a year, and that time was on Saturday, May 3rd. As the eyes of the world and especially the horse racing community turned to Churchill Downs for the running of the Kentucky Derby, there was a bit of an “Irish Flair” to the event this year. To see the flair, all you had to do was turn to the 17 horse, Commanding Curve. Commanding Curve would make a late run (if you haven’t seen the video, you can watch below) and finish second to the eventual champion, California Chrome.

At first glance, the horse coming out of the 17th post position was a thoroughbred from West Point Thoroughbreds, but if you did a little more research, you would learn of the Notre Dame connection.

Let’s put the pieces together…

First off, let’s look at the silks from Commanding Curve:


Now, so what professional sports team has uniform colors that are yellow and black?

The Columbus Crew of Major League Soccer:


The one former Notre Dame student-athlete whose rights are currently held by the Columbus Crew? Men’s soccer alum Ryan Finley.

To bring this puzzle around full circle, the number Ryan wore while at Notre Dame? 17. The post-position for Commanding Curve at the Derby? You guessed it, 17.



(At about 1:25 you will notice the 17 horse shooting up the field)


Oh, and Commanding Curve’s jockey may have stole the show …


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