Year Inducted: 2017
Bred by Don McNeill of Edmond, Okla., Caleb’s Posse was a Kentucky-bred by Posse from the Slewacide mare Abbey’s Missy. McNeill campaigned Caleb’s Posse with fellow Oklahoma businessman Everett Dobson. The colt was trained by Donnie Von Hemel.
A winner in his second career start in the summer of 2010 at Arlington Park in Chicago, Caleb’s Posse was given his initial stakes opportunities. After finishing third in the Grade 3, Arlington-Washington Futurity, Caleb’s Posse picked up an allowance win at Keeneland in Lexington, Ky. The budding 2-year-old was then pointed to the richest races for his class at Remington Park.
Jockey Quincy Hamilton and Caleb’s Posse pulled clear to win the $100,000 Clever Trevor Stakes at Remington Park, setting him up for the $250,000 Springboard Mile. The 5-1/2 length win in the Clever Trevor made Caleb’s Posse the heavy 4-5 wagering favorite in the Springboard, Remington’s top 2-year-old event. Run on Dec. 11, the final day of the 2010 season, a fierce cold-front arrived during the afternoon, dropping temperatures below freezing, bringing severe northerly winds. Caleb’s Posse didn’t take to the conditions, managing a seventh-place effort behind the winner, Grant Jack.
As a 3-year-old, Caleb’s Posse once again showed his ability, winning the $100,000 Smarty Jones Stakes at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark. After a second-place effort in the Grade 2 Rebel Stakes, Caleb’s Posse was compromised early with traffic in the Grade 1, Arkansas Derby, never rebounded and finished 12th.
A brief freshening helped as Caleb’s Posse won the Grade 3 Ohio Derby at Thistledown in Cleveland in June. After finishing fourth in the Grade 3 Iowa Derby at Prairie Meadows later that month, Caleb’s Posse was pointed mostly to longer sprints, featuring a lone turn, for the remainder of his career.
A surprise in the Grade 2 Amsterdam at Saratoga, Caleb’s Posse won by four lengths at 12-1 odds. Later in August, Caleb’s Posse rallied from last leaving the turn in the Grade 1 King’s Bishop Stakes at seven furlongs. He continued down the middle of the stretch to win a photo-finish by a nose over 2010 Eclipse award winner Uncle Mo.
Reaching his peak, Caleb’s Posse won the Grade 1, $1million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile at Churchill Downs, pulling away by a commanding four lengths.
The top win of his career would turn out to be his last victory. Caleb’s Posse raced three times in New York as a 4-year-old, finishing second in all three, including a pair of defeats by a nose in the Grade 1 Carter Handicap at Aqueduct and the Grade 1, $750,000 Met Mile at Belmont Park.
Caleb’s Posse is the third Oklahoma Horse Racing Hall of Fame horse bred and campaigned by the late Don McNeill, who was inducted into the hall in 2012. Caleb’s Posse retired to stallion duty after winning eight of his 19 career races, with five seconds and a pair of thirds, accumulating $1,423,370 in earnings.