LeDuff: How did Ficano get his name? - KMSP-TV

LeDuff: How did Ficano get his name?

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Ficano the horse  (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com) Ficano the horse (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com)
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) -

Bob Ficano's former right-hand man insists he did not name a rundown racehorse in honor of the embattled Wayne County executive.

Odd, since both the gelding and the political boss are named Ficano -- a rare name even in Italy.

"It was just coincidence," said Charlie Williams, the former deputy county executive who also moonlights as a thoroughbred horse breeder.

The way Williams tells it -- and the way he explained it to the Jockey's Club, which registered the horse's name in 2009 -- Ficano is an amalgam of the names of its parents.

The sire of Ficano was Giacomo -- winner of the 2005 Kentucky Derby as a 50-1 long shot. The mare was Fenceit. Mash the names together and you get Ficano. At least according to Williams.

"It's not because my former boss was named Ficano," Williams explained. "The name just had a ring to it."

Ficano -- the horse -- was born three years ago on a Fenton farm, but has not amounted to much. As a foal, it was attacked by its mother and carries a scar across the breadth of its neck. Ficano is short, slow-footed and winless in five races.

Ficano the county executive lives in his mother's house, exists on a wheat-free diet and is in the middle of a wide-ranging FBI corruption probe.

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