What's on a Kentucky Derby® Winner's Christmas List?

Posted by Carolynn Wilcox on Mon, Dec 14, 2015 @ 17:05 PM

Dear santa

The past four horses to win the Kentucky Derby have all written their letters to Santa and shipped them off to the North Pole – with help, of course!  Not sure what to get your favorite equine for Christmas?  See below for great gift ideas from these incredible horses!

American Pharoah

We had to start off with this year’s champion, who is definitely on Santa’s nice list this year!  American Pharoah will be wintering at Ashford Stud in Versailles, Kentucky, his retirement destination and his home for the foreseeable future.  This farm is essentially heaven on earth and would make an excellent retirement destination for even the most selective of humans – so we have a feeling that American Pharoah will be pleased with his new home (learn more about Ashford Stud here). 

Average January temperatures in Versailles range from 24° to 41°, and any horseman or horsewoman worth their salt knows that most hot-blooded horses (i.e. Thoroughbreds) don’t grow significant winter coats.  This leaves them susceptible to the cold temps that winter weather brings.  What to do?  Find the best blanket money can buy!

To keep warm in the barn on those chilly Kentucky nights, the champ asked Santa for a new blanket – specifically, the Traditional Plaid Blanket from Integrity Linens with his name stitched across.  It’s completely customizable, too.  Add fleece on the withers or shoulders, an embroidered name or a 3-letter monogram for the perfect blanket!

California Chrome

Derby Experiences RacingThis star of the 2014 Kentucky Derby has slowed down quite a bit since his three-year-old season, but has remained busy.  California Chrome has continued to compete in various races, returning home to California this fall.  His owners’ intentions are to get him back in shape and potentially race him in the Breeders’ Cup next year, meaning that a lot more work lies ahead for this champion! 

California Chrome has been a good boy this year and wants to play up his name, so he’s asked Santa for some Twinkle Toes Silver Glitter Hoof Polish!  That silver will really set off his shimmering chestnut coat.  This may not be a part of regulation grooming for the Breeders’ Cup, but while he’s training, why not?


He may be retired, but he’s still got a lot of energy!  This winner of the 2013 Kentucky Derby is currently living the dream at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky (this place is kind of a big deal – Secretariat once resided in what is now Orb’s paddock).  This handsome dark bay hopes that Santa brings him a peppermint-scented Jolly Ball horse toy, which would be ideal for entertainment when he’s cooped up in his stall during those Kentucky winter nights!

I’ll Have Another

This 2012 Kentucky Derby champ won two legs of the Triple Crown™, and if not for a tendon issue that kept him from running in the Belmont Stakes, he could very well have been the twelfth Triple Crown™ winner.  After his injury, he was retired to stud at Big Red Farm in Hokkaido, Japan.

I’ll Have Another asked Santa for something simple this holiday season – Paddock Cakes Peppermint Paddies Horse Treats!  They’re cute and festive, with a peppermint candy nestled inside each chewy cookie.

Who Will Be the Next Kentucky Derby® Winner?

Derby Experiences RacingWe’ve been hearing a lot about two-year-old standouts like Nyquist and Mohaymen, but who has what it takes to finish first in the 2016 Kentucky Derby and be added to this list of phenomenal horses?  See for yourself by reserving your spot at Churchill Downs next year! 

Check out our selection of premium packages, where you’ll enjoy being out of the elements as you take in privileged views of the track and high-end amenities such as gourmet dining, open bars, outdoor viewing platforms, and private wagering stations.  Don’t wait until the last minute to try to find a room in Louisville on Derby weekend – add three nights of hotel accommodations to ensure the most stress-free experience possible!  Hotel options include top-notch locales such as The Galt House, Embassy Suites Louisville Downtown and The Seelbach.

View Premium Seating Options

Topics: 2016 Kentucky Derby

Subscribe to Our Blog

About the Bloggers

Kristen Doolan

Kristen Doolan was born and raised a Florida State Seminole. Making her way from Florida to North Carolina, Kristen achieved her B.S. in Business Administration, Marketing at The University of North Carolina Wilmington. She is an avid traveler, college football addict, beach bum and loves spending time with her family and friends. 


Jazzy Morgan

Jazzy Morgan is originally from London, England and a die-hard Manchester United Fan. She grew up in Connecticut and made the move down south in 2011 where she attended Winthrop University and received her B.S. in Family & Consumer Sciences and a minor in Marketing. Jazzy enjoys traveling, working out, reading her monthly Vogue & Cosmo and keeping up with fashion trends.


Evan Chronis

Evan Chronis was born in Omaha, Nebraska but has made his home in south Charlotte for almost two decades. A Tar Heel born and bred, Evan received his B.A in Media and Journalism from UNC-Chapel Hill. He is an avid Boston sports fan thanks to his family’s New England roots, and a fanboy of Wes Anderson films.