Kentucky Derby Winner Country House Out for 2019 Preakness with Illness

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistMay 7, 2019

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - MAY 04: Country House #20, ridden by jockey Flavien Prat, heads down the stretch on his way to winning the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 04, 2019 in Louisville, Kentucky. Country House #20 was declared the winner after a stewards review disqualified Maximum Security #7. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

There will be no Triple Crown winner this year, as 2019 Kentucky Derby winner Country House will miss the Preakness Stakes on May 18 because of an illness.

Trainer Bill Mott told Daily Racing Form's Jay Privman on Tuesday:

"He developed a little bit of a cough this morning. [His] appetite is good. He doesn't have a fever. But he's coughing. We drew blood. He's acting like he's going to get sick. He's off the training list, and if he's off the training list, he's off the Preakness list.

"It's probably a little viral thing. Hopefully it doesn't develop into anything serious. Usually when something like this happens, a horse misses a couple weeks of training. He's not seriously sick right now. But he's showing indications that something is going on."

Country House unofficially finished second to Maximum Security at Churchill Downs on Saturday. However, Maximum Security was disqualified after an objection was filed for interference.

It marked the first time in the 145-year history of the Kentucky Derby that the first-place finisher had been disqualified for interference. Maximum Security owners Gary and Mary West filed an appeal over the decision, but the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission ruled that it was not subject to appeal.

Maximum Security will not race in the Preakness Stakes either.

According to ESPN Stats & Info, Country House was the second-biggest underdog to ever win the Derby:

ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo

Country House wins the 145th Kentucky Derby. Country House entered the race with 65-1 odds to win, making him the 2nd-longest shot to win the Kentucky Derby in the 145-year history of the race (Donerail, 91.5-1 in 1913). https://t.co/V85DMSW9qP

Mott previously said he was "leaning" toward having Country House run in the Preakness but that it would depend on the horse's condition over the next week. With the illness, he has made the decision early.

After a 37-year drought, there have been two Triple Crown winners in four years. American Pharoah (2015) and Justify (2018) each pulled off the historic feat.


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