Kentucky Derby Pedigree Profile: Uncle Chuck

Profile Picture: J. Keeler Johnson

July 5th, 2020

Handicappers can debate all day whether the late-maturing Los Alamitos Derby (G3) winner Uncle Chuck will progress quickly enough to vie for victory in the postponed Kentucky Derby (G1). With less than three months separating the first Saturday in September from Uncle Chuck’s June 12 debut, Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert will have to work his magic to get the dark bay colt ready in time.

But at least Uncle Chuck has the right bloodlines on his side. Almost any way you slice it, Uncle Chuck’s pedigree is filled with the combination of speed and stamina essential for success in the spring (or in this case, autumn?) classics.

Uncle Chuck Pedigree
Indian Charlie
Uncle Mo
Playa Maya
Uncle Chuck
Unbridled's Song
Forest Music
Defer West

Uncle Chuck’s sire, Uncle Mo, needs no introduction, The champion 2-year-old male of 2010, Uncle Mo is quickly establishing a reputation for siring route runners. From his first crop came champion juvenile and 2016 Kentucky Derby winner Nyquist, and the list of Uncle Mo’s major winners around two turns has subsequently grown to include Outwork, Unbridled Mo, Bast, Dream Tree, and Gomo—all Grade 1 winners running 1 1/16 miles or farther on dirt. He also has a couple of other 2020 Derby hopefuls in King Guillermo and Modernist.

Uncle Chuck figures to receive an additional boost from the bottom half of his pedigree. Though his dam, Forest Music, was a sprinter who won the Honorable Miss H. (G2) and Miss Preakness (G3) during a productive career, there’s more stamina in her makeup than first meets the eye.

As a broodmare, Forest Music has achieved note for producing 1 1/16-mile Doubledogdare (G3) winner Electric Forest and runaway 7-furlong Lazaro Barrera (G3) winner Kentuckian, but even more notable has been her first foal, Maclean’s Music. An impressive debut winner in his lone start, Maclean’s Music has risen to prominence at stud as the sire of 2017 Preakness (G1) champion Cloud Computing and Champagne (G1) winner Complexity.

Forest Music’s success as a broodmare isn’t surprising considering she’s a daughter of Unbridled’s Song. A renowned sire who counts sensational Dubai World Cup (G1) winner Arrogate; fellow Breeders’ Cup champions Forever Unbridled, Unrivaled Belle, Liam’s Map, and Midshipman; as well as champion 3-year-old Will Take Charge among his many classy and long-winded descendants, Unbridled’s Song is enjoying continued productivity as a broodmare sire. His daughters have foaled Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) champion Tourist, Santa Anita Handicap (G1) winner Gift Box, and Japanese Derby (G1) winner Contrail, among others.

Only time will tell if Uncle Chuck can parlay his raw talent into victory in the Kentucky Derby. But win or lose, Uncle Chuck is unlikely to be tripped up by his pedigree.