Looking Back

This month in mid-atlantic thoroughbred history! For Looking Back archives click here.

With the Olympics a year away, 21-year-old Bruce Davidson, a graduate of McDonogh School in Pikesville, Md., was attempting to make the United States Equestrian Team’s Olympic squad.

Over the previous two years, USET coaches received applications from up to 160 aspiring three-day event riders. From those, 15 to 20 rookie riders were invited to the USET headquarters in Gladstone, N.J. Only Davidson and twin brothers James and David Powers from Massachusetts remained.

One of the three horses Davidson worked with was his own 6-year-old Maryland-bred Thoroughbred named Murmansk (pictured right), considered a prospect for the 1976 Olympics.

Davidson, a USET Hall of Famer, was on five Olympic teams, winning four Olympic medals in team eventing – silver in 1972 and 1996, and gold in 1976 and 1984 – although none were aboard Murmansk.

  • Just weeks after representing Maryland proudly when finishing third in the Kentucky Oaks, the Eddie Gaudet-trained At Arms Length, bred in the state by E. Taylor Chewning, won Pimlico’s Black-Eyed Susan Stakes for owners Fendall Clagett and Giant Food Store partners Israel “Izzy” Cohen, his brother Emanuel Cohen and sister Lillian Solomon. Movette, a Virginia-bred by Cyane, finished a length back in second.

  • William S. Miller’s homebred colt Bee Bee Bee was another Maryland-bred winner at the Pimlico meet, defeating nine others in a state-bred maiden special weight for 2-year-olds May 11.

    A little over a year later the son of Better Bee, by then owned by William S. Farish, was the surprise winner of the Preakness.

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