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Title: Pensive  
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Subject: Needles (horse), 1944 in sports, War Emblem, War Admiral, Sir Barton
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This article is about the racehorse Pensive. For the magical item in the Harry Potter stories, see Pensieve. For the word refer to Wiktionary.
Sire Hyperion
Grandsire Gainsborough
Dam Penicuik
Damsire Buchan
Sex Stallion
Foaled 1941
Country US
Colour Chestnut
Breeder Calumet Farm
Owner Calumet Farm
Trainer Ben A. Jones
Record 22:7-5-4
Earnings $167,715
Major wins

Champagne Stakes (1943)
Oden Bowie Stakes (1943)
Chesapeake Stakes (1944)
Bowie Handicap (1944)
Rowe Memorial Handicap (1944)

American Classic Race wins:
Kentucky Derby (1944)
Preakness Stakes (1944)
Last updated on September 22, 2006

Pensive (1941–49) was a bright chestnut Thoroughbred racehorse that in 1944 came closer than any other horse at the time to winning the U.S. Triple Crown. He was also the first to win the first two legs and then lose the third.


  • Background 1
  • Racing career 2
  • Stud record 3
  • Breeding 4
  • References 5


He was sired by Hyperion, out of Penicuik II (by Buchan). Pensive was brought to the United States still in utero by Arthur B. Hancock, who then sold the mare to the owner of Calumet Farm, Warren Wright. Wright had inherited Calumet from his father, William Monroe Wright, president of the Calumet Baking Powder Company. Pensive began his training under Calumet's future Hall of Fame trainer Ben A. Jones.

Racing career

At two, Pensive raced five times, winning twice. His three losses all came in stakes races. At three, he ran a checkered season, winning and losing fairly equally. He beat older horses in the Rowe Memorial Handicap, but lost to an older horse, Tola Rose, in the Bowie Handicap. Tola Rose had defeated Whirlaway.

Pensive, ridden by Conn McCreary, won the Kentucky Derby going away by four and a half lengths. A week later, he took the Preakness. That year, the Belmont (at the time the least of the three races), had upped its purse to $50,000. Pensive was in the lead when Bounding Home inched by to take the race by less than half a length.

Following his loss in the Belmont, Pensive lost all eight of his final starts.

Stud record

Pensive was retired to stud, producing the winner of the 1949 Kentucky Derby, Ponder. He died in 1949, just after his son won the Derby. Pensive is buried at Calumet Farm.


Pedigree of Pensive
Hyperion ch. 1930

bay 1915

Bayardo Bay Ronald
Rosedrop St. Frusquin

bay 1919

Chaucer St.Simon
Canterbury Pilgrim
Serenissima Minoru
Penicuik ch. 1934

bay 1916

Sunstar Sundridge
Hamoaze Torpoint
Maid of the Mist

brown 1926

Hurry On Marcovil
Tout Suite
Plymstock Polymelus


  • Pensive's pedigree with photo
  • Pensive's Kentucky Derby

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