After spending the first half of the 2023 season in fourth place on Florida’s leading sire list, First Dude has moved up to third with progeny earnings of $1,571,766, and is on pace for a $3 million year.
Fivefive Six Champ is First Dude’s latest winner – No. 29 – accomplished with a sterling wire-to-wire performance at Gulfstream Park under Kentucky Derby-winning rider Sonny Leon. The 4-year-old gelding hadn’t hit the winner’s circle in his first 11 starts, all at Gulfstream, but indicated he was ready for a good one with a second, two thirds and two fourths in his previous five tries.
Fivefive Six Champ jumped out to the lead in the race at seven furlongs, then put up fractions of :23.52, :46.38 and 1:11.12 while en route to a seven-length score in a solid 1:23.77. Bred by Tom McCrocklin in Ocala, and owned by Champion Equine for his entire career, the gelding paid $4.20 and received his best Equibase ‘E’ speed figure in his 12 starts, an 82.