TC Victories: Kentucky Derby (Real Quiet, 1998); Preakness Stakes (Real Quiet, 1998)
In 1998, Mike Pegram came within a nose of becoming the first owner since Harbor View Farm in 1978 to have a horse win the Triple Crown. Pegram’s Real Quiet won both the Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness Stakes (G1), only to lose the Belmont Stakes (G1) in a photo to Victory Gallop. Real Quiet, whom Pegram purchased for $17,000 as a yearling, was named the champion three-year-old male. That year, Pegram also raced champion juvenile filly Silverbulletday. Since then, his top runners have included 2001 Dubai World Cup (UAE-G1) winner Captain Steve, who earned $6,828,356 and now is at stud in Japan.
A native of Princeton, Indiana, Pegram, 52, frequently attended the races at Ellis Park in Kentucky as a child and dreamed of someday owning a racehorse. After successfully opening a string of 21 McDonald’s in the Seattle, Washington, Pegram turned his dream into a reality. Pegram first raced Quarter Horses, and in the 1980s convinced trainer Bob Baffert to move from Quarter Horse racing into Thoroughbred racing. In 1992, Pegram and partners won the Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) with Thirty Slews, whom Baffert trained.
Today, Pegram is one of racing’s most popular and charismatic figures. Last year, Ellis Park honored him by giving away a bobblehead doll in his likeness to honor his 25th year in racing. The doll wears shorts, a T-shirt, and sandals and holds a Kentucky Derby trophy that Pegram won for Real Quiet.
Pegram also is involved in breeding and keeps his broodmares, including Silverbulletday, in Kentucky and California. Pegram purchased Holy Nola, dam of Preachinatthebar, for $75,000 at the 1996 Keeneland September yearling sale. With Hill ‘n’ Dale Sales Agency, agent, Holy Nola was sold in foal to Real Quiet for $300,000 at the 2001 Keeneland November breeding stock sale.