Trainer Todd Pletcher reported Sunday morning that Kentucky Derby victor Always Dreaming exited the race in good order and will leave Churchill Downs on Monday or Tuesday for the May 20 Preakness in Baltimore.
The lightly raced 3-year-old colt took the lead on the backstretch and seemed to have everything under his control as he became the 143rd victor of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday.
The 3-year-old son of Bodemeister splashed home to a 2 3/4-length victory to don the roses bestowed upon the victor of America’s most famous race for the 143rd time.
Which horses are running in the 2017 Kentucky Derby?
Churchill Downs officials say attendance for the Kentucky Derby was 158,070. Always Dreaming took over as favorite at 4-1 at that time and moved up to 9-2 by race time. Lookin at Lee and Battle of Midway finished second and third, respectively.
The colt that gave trainer Todd Pletcher his second Derby win also became the fifth consecutive betting favourite to wear the roses.
UAE Derby victor Thunder Snow bucked out of the starting gate and was immediately pulled up in the opening moments.
Always Dreaming’s primary ownership is comprised of Bonomo’s Brooklyn Boyz Stables and Teresa Viola.
Battle of Midway, 40-1, held off Classic Empire for third and rewarded his followers with a $20.80 show ticket.
“He’s the first horse in 20 years to run in the top three in the Derby from the 1-hole”. “I thought we had a big shot when we were turning for home”.
Always Dreaming has now run in two stakes races and won both.
“There was a lot of talk about our Derby record, so we were hoping to get another one”, said Pletcher, who had three starters on Saturday.
YFH’s top choice, Classic Empire, ran fourth.
Patch – the horse with one eye, and a crowd favorite – came in 14th.
Another storyline had been the return of jockey Rajiv Maragh, who rode Irish War Cry.
At that point he probably wasn’t caching the victor, but he was all out to finish fourth, which wasn’t bad considering how the first 7 furlongs went for him. The son of Bodemeister won by 2 3/4 lengths and finished the 1 1/4-mile distance in 2:03.59 over a sloppy track.
“We got bumped around really hard at the start which put us in a very tough position early”, said Classic Empire’s rider Julien Leparoux.
He galloped into hearts across the country when he earned a spot for the first time to run for the prestigious prize, now in its 143rd year. What Derby Day would be complete without ladies and their hats?
Godolphin’s Thunder Snow lost his chance when bucking after being slowly away.
Santa Anita Derby victor Gormley, also trained by Shirreffs, will ship back to California after his ninth-place finish. Looking forward, however, it must be noted that impressive Derby winners in the past have frequently failed to secure a repeat visit to the winner’s circle at Pimlico.
It was the 143rd running of the Derby, which serves as the first leg of horse racing’s Triple Crown (Preakness, Belmont).