Kentucky Derby: Mage kicks on late to win Churchill Downs feature after late withdrawal of favourite Forte as more deaths mar event | Racing News
Mage gained the 149th working of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on Saturday to seize the primary leg of America’s Triple Crown.
Mage, who completed second within the Florida Derby final month, went off at 15/1 and took up the lead late to beat Two Phil’s and Angel of Empire, one of many favourites, who completed in third place.
The victory was the primary Kentucky Derby win for Venezuelan coach Gustavo Delgado and Venezuelan Corridor of Fame jockey Javier Castellano, who gained the Run for the Roses after 16 makes an attempt.
“I by no means surrender, I all the time attempt laborious, took rather a lot to get right here I lastly get it,” mentioned Castellano. “I am blessed. Thanks for the chance to run this horse, that has loads of coronary heart.”
An emotional Delgado added: “After I arrived to the US my first dream was go to Kentucky. I used to be certain that the horse was excellent.”
This 12 months’s race was marked by the variety of horses scratched, together with pre-race favorite Forte who grew to become the fifth horse to be eliminated early on Saturday, leaving the sphere at 18 horses, the shortest area since 2020.
Saturday’s Derby was additionally the end result of every week stained by the loss of life of seven horses – two within the hours earlier than the race – that led to the suspension of coach Saffie Joseph Jr.
The Preakness Stakes, second leg of the Triple Crown, shall be run on Could 20 at Pimlico in Baltimore, adopted by the Belmont Stakes three weeks in a while June 10.