Darrell Darrell

Career: 1990-1996

Year Inducted: 2023

Durable, versatile, tactical and fast all describe the talented Darrell Darrell. A sprinter who campaigned six years for owner Jean Dillard of Ringling, Okla., the Oklahoma-bred held his own at a variety of sprint distances while building a resume that would be worth more than a million-dollars by today’s purse standards.

A gelded son of Boca Rio from the King’s Bishop mare Harrys Queen, Darrell Darrell was bred by Dillard and enjoyed the majority of his success under the training eye of Normie Thomas, Jr.

Darrell Darrell didn’t make his first career start until he was three. He debuted a winner at Canterbury Park in Minnesota on May 5, 1990. By the time he made his way to Remington Park, he had won three of four races, including allowances at Canterbury and at Arlington Park outside Chicago. He continued to rack up the early career wins at Remington Park, winning his first race in Oklahoma City against allowance rivals on Oct. 6, 1990 and then capturing the first stakes race of many here when he scored in the Oklahoma Stallion Stakes in December to conclude his 3-year-old campaign. He won five of seven starts in 1990.

Most of Darrell Darrell’s efforts finished in the money, if not in the winner’s circle. He proved to be as consistent as any stakes-caliber sprinter going when from March 1992 through November 1994, he posted top-three finishes in 23 of 24 races, with 11 wins during that span. Among those efforts were seven stakes wins, a tremendous third-place run going one mile over turf in the 1993 Edmond Handicap at Remington Park and a victory in a promotional race that would have made showman P.T. Barnum proud.

In the summer of 1993, Remington Park hyped a match-race between an American Quarter Horse and a Thoroughbred. The connections of Darrell Darrell were sporting enough to accept an invitation to compete in the $25,000 “Rumble at Remington.” The 1,000-yard event pitted the talented sprinter against Quarter Horse EJ Cash Bo, who had just won a stakes race at the distance a few weeks prior. The pair of 6-year-olds left the gate with EJ Cash Bo breaking on top but it didn’t take long for Darrell Darrell to find his stride under jockey Richard Bickel, take control and go on to win by one length in :51.92. The unique distance was rarely used again at Remington Park, leaving Darrell Darrell with a lasting track record.

In 1993, Darrell Darrell helped usher in the Oklahoma Classics at Remington Park, a series of divisional stakes events for Oklahoma-breds. He finished second in the first Classics Sprint to rival Harry N Jerry but managed to turn the tables on him and win the second edition of the race in 1994.

Darrell Darrell would race frequently and for almost any purse amount. He routinely went to the starting gate three to five times in nearly every Remington Park season he competed, while making two to three starts in a month more common than not. His biggest victory at Remington Park came in the $75,000 Centennial Handicap in March 1993.

Darrell Darrell won races ranging in purse value from around $10,000 up to $100,000, twice winning the Arapahoe Park Sprint in Colorado for the latter amount in 1994 and 1995. Trained at the end of his career by James Jones, Darrell Darrell posted his final victory in the Arapahoe Park Sprint in July 1996, his third win in the race, for a diminished purse of $13,000.

Darrell Darrell won at distances from five to seven furlongs, in addition to his 1,000-yard match race triumph. He had 54 career starts with 24 wins, 15 seconds and five thirds, earning nearly $600,000. At Remington Park he started 31 times with 14 victories, 11 seconds and three third-place finishes for an astounding 90% in-the-money mark in Oklahoma City.

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