Kentucky Derby pedigree profile: Resilience

April 7th, 2024

A pace-tracking trip carried Resilience to a 2 1/4-length win in the Wood Memorial (G2) at Aqueduct, stamping the bay colt as a viable Kentucky Derby (G1) contender.

Pedigree handicappers were already aware of Resilience’s Kentucky Derby potential. After all, his pedigree is packed with speed, stamina, class, and—most importantly—Kentucky Derby winners.

Resilience is a son of five-time leading North American sire Into Mischief. A sprinter/miler who won the CashCall Futurity (G1), Into Mischief is known for passing on speed and stud. But some of his best runners have carried their speed over the Kentucky Derby’s 1 1/4-mile distance, including Derby winners Authentic (2020) and Mandaloun (2021). Another son, Audible, finished third in the 2018 Kentucky Derby.

Meanwhile, Resilience’s dam is Meadowsweet, a two-time turf winner over distances of about 6 1/2 furlongs and 1 1/16 miles. Her first foal, Cloud Forest, won a maiden special weight racing one mile on dirt at Aqueduct.

Meadowsweet is a daughter of Smart Strike out of Tranquility Lake, and this is where the pedigree of Resilience really starts to shine. Smart Strike won the 1 1/16-mile Philip H. Iselin H. (G1) and developed into an elite stallion, siring Preakness (G1) winner and two-time Horse of the Year Curlin, Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1) winner and champion English Channel, Preakness hero and two-time champion Lookin At Lucky, and many other top-class runners. Daughters of Smart Strike have foaled Kentucky Derby winners Mine That Bird (2009) and Rich Strike (2022).

As for Tranquility Lake, she won a bevy of graded stakes across a decorated career. She was best on grass, winning the Gamely Breeders’ Cup H. (G1) and Yellow Ribbon S. (G1) racing 1 1/4 miles, but she also won the 1 1/16-mile Clement L. Hirsch (G1) and placed in the seven-furlong La Brea (G1) on dirt.

Tranquility Lake’s record as a broodmare is equally impressive. In addition to Meadowsweet, she has foaled Shoemaker Mile (G1) winner Courageous Cat, Eddie Read H. (G1) and Charles Whittingham Memorial H. (G1) hero After Market, and Al Maktoum Challenge Round 3 (G2) winner Jalil. Courageous Cat was a miler, but After Market and Jalil both secured signature victories over 1 1/4 miles.

It comes down to this—if Resilience wins the Kentucky Derby, he’ll become the third son of Into Mischief and third horse produced by a Smart Strike mare to win the Kentucky Derby. Any way you slice it, that’s a pedigree geared for success on the first Saturday in May.