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Patricia Rogers, a former Los Alamos County Councilor and currently an Albuquerque resident, and Martha Hawkins of Los Alamos, were among the 151,000 spectators who watched an unknown horse from New Mexico achieve victory during the Kentucky Derby.
Mine That Bird raced from obscurity into fame during the 135th derby, May 2 in Louisville, Ky.
Hawkins said she and her friend turned to each other during the race and exclaimed, “Number 8! What’s the name of that horse?”
She said they were astonished and delighted to learn that Mine That Bird was from New Mexico.
Rogers was invited to the derby by some colleagues and she in turn invited Hawkins to come along.
“She is a very dear friend of mine from the South,” Rogers said.
As a result, she said she felt Hawkins would appreciate the event more than her other friends.
They left for the derby April 30 and returned May 3. Although Rogers had attended the derby in the 1990s, it was Hawkins’ first trip. “It was such a wonderful event for us,” Rogers said. “We had such a great time … I’m so happy we got to do it.”