Kentucky Derby Results 2013: Winners and Losers from the Run for the Roses
Shug McGaughey found that dreams can come true in horse racing, even if they take 34 years to achieve. The 62-year-old veteran horse trainer won his first Kentucky Derby when Orb came bounding across the finish line ahead two and one-half lengths.
Despite a wet track that was thrashed by rain most of the day, the race was a great prize for the popular trainer and jockey Joel Rosario.
Orb, McGaughey and Rosario will head to Baltimore in two weeks for the Preakness to take the second step in the journey. Before we look ahead though, let's break down the winners and losers from the 139th Run for the Roses.
Winner: Jockey Joel Rosario
The Kentucky Derby is a tough test for any jockey.
It's always a huge field, meaning the jockeys have to negotiate their way by all of the contenders and pretenders alike. That kind of traffic has turned many great horses into also-rans.
Joel Rosario was not about to let that happen. Rosario sensed that the pace was extremely fast as the race got underway and Palace Malice got out in front.
Orb was 17th at the half-mile mark, but his jockey didn't panic. He kept his head and turned it on at the three-quarters mark. Rosario earns tremendous marks for exercising patience and getting his horse to turn on the afterburners at the perfect time.
Loser: Long Shot Players
The Kentucky Derby has historically been a race for bettors who love long shots.
The huge fields often wreaks havoc with favorites whose tactics get blown up because of all the competition. Over the past 10 years, the average winner has gone off at odds of 14.5 to 1.
However, Orb was the co-favorite in the race, and he went off at odds of 5-1. He paid $12.80 to win, $7.40 to place and $5.40 to show.
Horse players who were counting on a huge score by picking an underdog came away quite disappointed.
Orb came into the Kentucky Derby as one of the co-favorites along with Revolutionary.
Much of the money came just before post time as Orb picked up a lot of support late in the day. Perhaps it was the combination of a strong Kentucky-bred horse coming into top form in his home state.
Orb bided his time early and then came on with a powerful run in the final half mile of the 1.25-mile race. His time of 2:02.89 in muddy conditions made it clear that Orb has a chance to be a sensational champion horse.
Verrazano went into the Kentucky Derby with an undefeated record in four starts.
He had been victorious in the Grade 2 Tampa Bay Derby and the Grade 1 Wood Memorial. That kind of resume made him one of the top overlays in the field as he went off in the race at 9-1.
But instead of continuing his winning ways, Verrazano finished 14th in the race. He never was a real factor.
Winner: Golden Soul
Golden Soul was one of the long shots in the race, but he appeared to have little chance of contending when the weather came up rainy on Derby Day.
He is a stretch runner, and those conditions usually make it tough for a come-from-behind horse to get close.
However, like the winner, Golden Soul came from behind and finished just 2.5 lengths behind Orb. Those who backed Golden Soul picked up $38.60 for betting him to place and $19.40 for betting him to show.
Kentucky Derby co-favorite Revolutionary had his eyes on the big prize all week. The combination of trainer Todd Pletcher and Calvin Borel made him one of the most popular picks in the Derby.
Revolutionary was considered the lone favorite most of the week until much of the late money came in on Orb.
Here's the good news: Revolutionary got a perfect trip, as Borel kept him near the rail so he could save ground throughout the race.
The bad news? Orb was much better. The Kentucky Derby winner came from way behind and was on the outside the entire race yet managed to win easily.
If Revolutionary is going to beat Orb in any of the upcoming Triple Crown races, he is going to have to race much better than he did in the Kentucky Derby.
Winner: Trainer Shug McGaughey
The look on Shug McGaughey's face was one of disbelief after the Kentucky Derby came to an end and Orb had crossed the finish line first.
McGaughey looked like a man who was waiting for a late train to pick him up. Then, when he got a congratulatory hug, he realized what he had seen with his eyes had actually happened.
At long last, the longtime trainer had his first Kentucky Derby winner. McGaughey has been mastering his craft since 1979 but had never won the Run for the Roses.
The Kentucky-born, 62-year-old Hall of Fame trainer got the victory he wanted most in his career.
Loser: Jockey Rosie Napravnik
Rosie Napravnik is one of the top jockeys in the country. She wanted to make history in the Kentucky Derby, looking to become the first female jockey to win the Kentucky Derby aboard Mylute.
Napravnik and Mylute finished fifth. While Mylute was in the race most of the way, he was not in the money. Still, it's the best finish by any female jockey in Kentucky Derby history.
However, Napravnik wasn't interested in that kind of history. She wanted to become the first female winner, and she came up short.
Winner: Preakness Stakes
The Preakness usually pales in comparison to the Kentucky Derby. It is the second jewel of the Triple Crown races, and it doesn't attract anywhere near the attention of the classic race from Churchill Downs.
However, when there is a great horse entering the Baltimore race, it has a huge impact on the public. After the way Orb won the Kentucky Derby, it's clear that he has the potential to be great. His 2:02.89 time in poor conditions coupled with the long route he took by staying on the outside for the majority of the race are two perfect indicators.
The Preakness will get more attention than usual as race fans hope that 2013 brings the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978.
Loser: Jockey John Velazquez
John Velazquez is one of the best jockeys in the business. Before the Kentucky Derby, he had his choice of riding Orb or Verrazano.
He was the No. 1 jockey for each horse, and Velazquez felt that undefeated Verrazano would be the better mount for the Kentucky Derby.
Velazquez and Verrazano finished 14th.
Velazquez is still one of the best jockeys in the country. However, he may not be quite as accomplished as a handicapper. He clearly made the wrong choice of Kentucky Derby horses.
Winners: Horse Racing Blue Bloods
Stuart Janney and Ogden Mills "Dinny" Phipps own Orb. They are first cousins of the Whitney and Vanderbilt families who are considered the blue bloods in the sport of thoroughbred racing.
Janney and Phipps won their first Kentucky Derby when Orb stormed to the lead and took the Run for the Roses. It was a victory that was a long time coming for one of the first families of horse racing.
Loser: Normandy Invasion
It looked great for Normandy Invasion at the top of the stretch in the Kentucky Derby.
He had stayed within reach of the leaders and kept Palace Malice within his sights as he rolled up the back stretch. As Palace Malice came back to the pack, Normandy Invasion rolled to the lead. It looked like it was going to be his day.
That was until Orb began his power running down the stretch. Normandy Invasion was crestfallen once he was passed for the lead and he faded to fourth place.
Winner: Jockey Gary Stevens
The order of finish says Oxbow and jockey Gary Stevens ended up sixth in the Kentucky Derby. That's a disappointment, because Stevens felt he had a chance to get to the lead and dictate the pace of the race.
If he could have gotten to the lead and then slowed down, the veteran might have been able to steal the race. However, Palace Malice upset those plans by going to the front and setting a murderous pace.
Oxbow and Stevens did not win, but they adjusted their tactics as the race went along and still managed a solid showing, which is notable because Stevens came out of retirement just this year.
Loser: Todd Pletcher
Todd Pletcher may be the best trainer in horse racing, but that notion wasn't well supported in the Kentucky Derby.
He had five horses in the race and felt that all of them had a legitimate chance to win. Revolutionary was his best horse, and he finished third, while none of his other horses even threatened to place. Charming Kitten finished ninth and was his second-best horse in the race.
Verrazano, probably the most well-respected horse four weeks before the Kentucky Derby, finished well up the track in 14th.