Justify, Kentucky Derby winner, is clearly made of the ‘right stuff.’ Not only do his mighty ancestors include Canadian stalwarts Deputy Minister, Storm Bird, and Nijinsky – indeed Nijinsky appears 3 times – but his breeders, John and Tanya Gunther, hail from Langley, British Columbia.
In fact, Justify was not the only starter in the Derby to have been born on the Gunther’s Kentucky operation, Glennwood Farm. Vino Rosso was the other. Now that is quite remarkable considering there were almost 21,000 foals born in the US in 2015.
While Gunther commutes between British Columbia and Kentucky, Tanya is at the helm of the breeding farm and her father credits much of their success to her tremendous commitment in studying generations of bloodlines.
Canada’s Rivers of Gold, four genetic streams that began in earnest a decade ago, have resulted in so many outstanding horses. And on the first Saturday in May 2018, galloping in the rain and over a slick, muddy track, these gallant young colts surely benefited from the Canadian hardiness factor.