Animal Kingdom finished fast and late to win the 137th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on Saturday night. Aidan O’Brien’s Master Of Hounds ran well and came in fifth.
The winner gave well known US jockey, John Velazquez his first win in the American classic. Velazquez had been due to partner Uncle Mo, but the favourite was a late withdrawal. It was only when Robby Albarado picked up an injury that he got the call up.
Velazquez said: “Words can’t describe how I feel right now. Of course I feel bad for Robby but this win is for the both of us – I know he is with me today. I’ve been unlucky with injuries and missed big winners before in the past but today I’ve got lucky. I’ve lost the last three favourites for this through scratchings.
“It was a bit tight at the first pole but I was soon happy and once I started my run I was always going to win”.