Iron Liege

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Iron Liege (1954–1972) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse best known for winning the 1957 Kentucky Derby. A son of Calumet Farm's leading sire Bull Lea, and out of the mare Iron Maiden, his damsire was the 1937 U.S. Triple Crown champion, War Admiral, whose sire in turn was the great Man o' War.

Three year-old season

As a three-year-old colt in 1957, he won the Forerunner Stakes, Sheridan Stakes, Laurance Armour Memorial Handicap, Jersey Stakes, and the Kentucky Derby. In 1958, he won the McLennan Handicap.

In winning the 1957 Kentucky Derby, Iron Liege defeated greats such as Bold Ruler and Round Table, both future Hall of Fame inductees. However, his Derby win was marred because Bill Shoemaker, the jockey of Gallant Man, misjudged the finish line and stood up too early in his irons, which caused his horse to slow and allowed Iron Liege to win by a nose.

Ridden by Hall of Fame jockey Bill Hartack, he was trained by another Hall of Famer, Jimmy Jones. He later died after standing at an unknown farm in Japan in 1971.


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