The — the first leg of horse racing's fabled Triple Crown — is in the books. Justify handled the sloppy conditions in Louisville the best and won the 144th Run for the Roses.
The Derby is so much more than a race, though — it's an event, with from all around attending. Saturday's attendance at Churchill Downs was announced at 157,813.
Who won the 2018 Kentucky Derby?
Justify, the 5-2 betting favorite trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by 52-year-old jockey Mike Smith, won the million race. The 3-year-old colt stalked a fast early pace while racing up front, took the lead around the far turn and pulled away in deep stretch. The winning time for the 1 1/4 miles was 2 minutes, 4 1/5 seconds.
Apollo was the 1882 Kentucky Derby champion, who was the last winner before Justify not to race as a 2-year-old.
Smith is the second-oldest jockey to win the Derby; Bill Shoemaker was 54 when he won aboard Ferdinand in 1987.
"We jumped out well and I didn't by all means (think) I had it won, but man, just a sigh of relief. I was just like, 'Ahh, you do it from here, man.' I basically stayed out of the way and just kept a leg on each side and my body in the middle," Smith told reporters in the postrace press conference (per Thoroughbred Daily News).
"It’s like having LeBron James on your team. You have LeBron James, you better win a championship,” Baffert, now a five-time Derby winner, told reporters ().
Kentucky Derby results
Justify finished first, followed by Good Magic, Audible and Instilled Regard. Justify paid .80 to win (for every wagered).#-Horse Win Place Show 7-Justify 7.80 6.00 4.40 6-Good Magic 9.20 6.60 5-Audible 5.80 15-Instilled Regard
Winning time: 2:04.20.
Also ran: 10-My Boy Jack; 13-Bravazo; 9-Hofburg; 8-Lone Sailor; 18-Vino Rosso; 17-Solomini; 1-Firenze Fire; 11-Bolt d'Oro; 4-Flameaway; 12-Enticed; 3-Promises Fulfilled; 2-Free Drop Billy; 19-Noble Indy; 20-Combatant; 16-Magnum Moon; 14-Mendelssohn.
exacta (7-6) paid .60; trifecta (7-6-5) paid 1.40; superfecta (7-6-5-15) paid ,618.20.
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