Brother Derek Where Art Thou?

May 11, 2006 at 4:19 pm | Posted in greg, misc | 2 Comments

As is to be expected, local headlines often reflect local products (people, horses, etc) that have made a name on the National/International Stage. The recent running of the Kentucky Derby is one such example. The Kentucky Derby seemed to make more local (Utah) headlines this year due to the running of featured favorite colt Brother Derek. Brother Derek was part owned by a Utahn and trained locally in South Jordan giving him his Utah ties. The national fame that Brother Derek now enjoys has made him a local celebrity of sorts. As with any local celebrity, Utahns, especially Mormons, have a tendency to seek for a connection–of the celebrity– to mormonism. In order to fullfill this need for connection, rumors often crop up around the celebrity. While these rumors usually involve people/animals from or associated with Utah, sometimes the individual or horse can get tied into these rumors just by becoming part of Utah culture. For example: Dennis Rodman is going to be the next Prophet, Shakira is taking the missionary disscussions, Neleh Dennis almost won Survivor because she took her scriptures on the show, or that Larry Miller is a good person. Brother Derek is no exception to the rumor-connection game. While most Utahns have heard that Brother Derek was named after a Mormon missionary, I recently heard a more complete story. As I understand it, Brother Derek was named after the missionary that baptized him. While not common, there are known spiritual occasions where missionaries will administer to animals. Here are a couple of examples: I was an eye witness to Elder Soto giving a sick dog a blessing on my mission. Eliza, in the mormon movie Legacy, blesses her oxen when they are sick. And finally, Brother Derek (the horse) gets baptized by Brother Derek (the missionary). There is little doubt that the success that Brother Derek has had in racing is due to the spiritual fortitude given him through baptism.



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  1. except that he lost the kentucky derby. i think it’s because both brother derek the person and brother derek the horse are ugly.

  2. You have to win races to even be considered for the Kentucky Derby. And Brother Derek did take fourth. Being Baptized automatically insures success but does not insure that you will win. Look at Neleh Dennis.

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