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Bet Twice

Bet Twice
Sire Sportin' Life
Dam Golden Dust
Grandsire Nijinsky
Damsire Dusty Canyon
Gender Stallion
Foaled 1984
Country United States
Color Chestnut
Breeder William S. Farish III & E. J. Hudson
Owner Cisely Stable & Robert Levy
Trainer Warren A. Croll, Jr.
Record 26: 10-6-4
Earnings $3,308,599
Bet Twice is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Golden Dust by Sportin' Life. He was born around 1984 in the United States, and was bred by William S. Farish III & E. J. Hudson.
Major wins

Pimlico Special Handicap (1988)
Haskell Invitational Handicap (1987)
Fountain of Youth Stakes (1987)
Laurel Futurity (1986)
Sapling Stakes (1986)
Arlington-Washington Futurity Stakes (1986)

American Classic Race wins:
Belmont Stakes (1987)
Horse (Equus ferus caballus)
Last updated on August 17, 2007

Bet Twice (1984–1999) was a multi-millionaire American thoroughbred Stallion racehorse. Foaled in Kentucky, he was sired by Sportin' Life, who in turn was the son of the great stallion and British Triple Crown champion, Nijinsky, out of the mare, Golden Dust. He was bred by William S. Farish III and E. J. Hudson and born on what became Lane's End Farm in Versailles, Kentucky.


Two year-old season

Owned by a syndicate of approximately three dozen that included baseball players Pete Rose and Garry Maddox, his principal shareholder was Robert Levy, the owner of Atlantic City Race Course. As a two year-old, Bet Twice won the grade one Laurel Futurity and the Arlington-Washington Futurity Stakes and the grade two Sapling Stakes.

Three year-old season

Early in his three year-old season Bet Twice won the grade two Fountain of Youth Stakes on the road to the Triple Crown. Bet Twice met an incredible crop of talented horses in that three year-old year including Gulch and Cryptoclearance, however, it was his rivalry with Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner Alysheba that appears to be awe inspiring, as he faced that colt nine times, beating him four times.

Bet Twice and Alysheba battled down the stretch in what many consider one of the most physical Derbies ever. Alysheba prevailed by a half length over Bet Twice with both colts almost two and a half length in front of the rest of the field.

In the Preakness Stakes, Bet Twice was listed at post time as the fourth choice in a strong field at 5-1. Bet Twice broke sharply and placed himself third going into the first turn. He was up with the leaders when he was floated out wide. Approaching the stretch took the lead from leaders Lookingforthebigone and Alysheba. In the closing moments of the race, Alysheba ran his heart out and Bet Twice gave way stubbornly and lost by only a half length again. In third and fourth were Cryptoclearance and Gulch respectively in a very strong field.

Bet Twice may be best known for his victory in the 1987 Belmont Stakes. Ridden by Craig Perret and trained by Jimmy Croll, his win of 14 lengths denied Alysheba the Triple Crown. By virtue of his victory in the Belmont and runner-up performances in the Preakness Stakes and the Kentucky Derby he edged out Alsheba for the first ever $1,000,000 Chrysler Triple Crown Bonus. That bonus stamped Bet Twice as the top performing three year-old in the Triple Crown series despite being overshadowed in the media by Alsheba.

Bet Twice would then go on to win the Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park over his rival Alysheba. He would then finish ahead of his arch-rival Alysheba in the Travers Stakes at Saratoga Race Course, though both horses finished in mid-pack behind Java Gold on the sloppy track.

Four year-old season

As a four year-old, Bet Twice accepted an invitation to run in the first revival of a very prestigious race in the $500,000 grade one Pimlico Special Handicap at "Old Hilltop" in Baltimore, Maryland. He entered that race as the post time fourth choice in a field of seven graded stakes winners at 7-1. As the gates opened he dropped back to next to last but only six lengths off the lead. Going into that famous "club house turn" at Pimlico Race Course, Oaklawn Handicap winner Lost Code led the field followed by local favorite Little Bold John and dual classic winner Alysheba. Then on the far turn Bet Twice weaved through traffic and moved between horses to challenge for the lead. Coming down the stretch, Bet Twice drifted out and brushed Lost Code. Then he drew off and won at the wire by 3/4 of a length. In that race he avenged his loss to Alysheba in the Preakness from a year earlier and beat a steller field that also included Cryptoclearance, Lost Code and local Maryland star Little Bold John. He won the grade one race at a mile and 3/16 in 1:54 1/5.

Later that year, Bet Twice put in a very consistent summer campaign. He had runner-up finishes in the grade one Philip H. Iselin Handicap, the grade three Ben Ali Stakes and the grade three Salvator Mile. He also had show performances finishing third in the grade one Suburban Handicap and the grade one United Nations Handicap.


Bet Twice stood at stud for six years at Muirfield Farm from 1990 through 1996. Bet Twice was pensioned from stud duty at age 12, and on March 5, 1999, died at Muirfield East in Maryland. He was 15.


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