Tebow’s a horse, too.
In fact, there are at least six thoroughbreds listed by The Jockey Club carrying the Tebow name.
They’re all named for Tim Tebow, the New York Jets’ new backup quarterback who last season led Denver to the playoffs with an incredible string of comeback victories but was traded away after the Broncos signed free agent Peyton Manning.
Out there on a farm, at a training center or on a racetrack, there’s Tebow Go, Tebow Gator, Tebow Time, Tebows Big Play, and naturally, Tebowing and Tebowmania.
Some have won races, others haven’t and others have yet to make it to the racetrack. But each of their owners obviously had the high-profile QB in mind when picking out a name. Add horse racing to Tebow’s all-encompassing reach.
“At the same time the Tebow fascination was happening, we said what a great name for a horse,” said Billy Koch, the managing partner of Little Red Feather Racing who bought four yearlings last September and named a filly Tebowing. “I’m not the biggest Tebow fan, but what he did was pretty miraculous and we all thought the name would be terrific. And it wasn’t taken.”
Koch, though, was surprised when told two other 2-year-olds have Tebow-centric names — a colt named Tebows Big Play and a filly Tebowmania. He said he’s hope Tebowing will make her first start this summer at Del Mar in California.
Tebow’s strong Christian beliefs led to Tom and Debi Tull of Tommy Town Thoroughbreds in Santa Ynez, Calif., naming one of their homebreds Tebows Big Play.
“They like Christian themes for their horses,” said Deanne Beer, the chief financial officer for the Tulls’ operation. Among their other horses, Beer said, are Give You Glory, Light Up the Sky, Ain’t No Other and Beyond Blessed. Tebows Big Play’s father is Ministers Wild Cat, perhaps telling in itself since the Jets are saying Tebow will be featured in the wildcat formation.
The hope is the colt will make the races sometime in the summer, maybe just as Tebow suits up for preseason games.
And then there’s Tebowmania, owned by trainer Dave Bennett’s wife, Deborah, who hails from Denver. The trainer says his wife has always been Tebow-oriented.
“She loves college football, followed Tebow when he played at Florida, and then when the Broncos drafted him we started throwing Tebowmania around,” said Bennett, adding that they also were aware of a horse that was named Broncomania. “So when we bought the filly in January, the name was easy to come up with.”
And now that Tebow’s a Jet?
“She’s a fan of Tebow,” said Bennett.
Koch, whose horse Singletary (named for Chicago Bears great Mike Singletary) won the Breeders’ Cup Mile in 2004, watched Tebow’s news conference on TV Monday, when he met the media for the first time as a Jet.
“Couldn’t miss it. What’s going on with him is just amazing,” said Koch.
At one point, Tebow spoke about his strong Christian beliefs, and said it’s funny so much has been made of “Tebowing” in the last year.
“I’m pretty sure I’m not the first athlete who has gotten on a knee and prayed, but it’s known as `Tebowing,” he said. “I’m not sure why. It probably has a little bit to do with the hype.”
And who could blame Koch if at that moment he kneeled and said a prayer for his up-and-coming filly Tebowing.