Texas woman's $18 Derby bet pays $1.2 million

Hope Soto
May 8, 2018

"It was an unbelievable performance by the victor, on this track, going that fast", Derby trainer Dale Romans said.

Baffert was foreshadowing just what an upside awaits Justify. He came back and he really wasn't that exhausted. "I mean he's full of himself". He ate up last night and today he has been a handful. He's so lovely. He's got the body. "Usually they're a little bit exhausted, but he was good".

The day after the Kentucky Derby is usually reserved for talk of a Triple Crown.

"It took a horse like Justify to break the 136-year-old Curse of Apollo", Smith said as he was being interviewed on the track immediately after the race.

Trainer Todd Pletcher, whose four Derby horses included third-place Audible, gave no indication of Preakness plans. It started in 1997 with Silver Charm, followed by Real Quiet in 1998, War Emblem in 2002 and American Pharoah in 2015.

In another big Kentucky Derby win, a Las Vegas gambler placed a 300-to-1 futures bet on Justify winning the Kentucky Derby at the Wynn sportsbook in February, before the colt even was guaranteed a spot in the race. Last year's victor, Cloud Computing, won with a time of 1:55.98. That fifth race happened to be the Kentucky Derby.

The fact Justify was still frisky to run after the sixth-fastest opening quarter-mile in Derby history at 22.24 seconds and a muddy race spoke volumes to Baffert in terms of winning style and what the future might bring.

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Justify is co-owned by Kentucky's WinStar Farms, Head of Plains Partners and the China Horse Club.

"I've seen all kinds, I mean this guy, he's just special", Baffert said. "The outrider had to help pull him up".

It remains uncertain which horses will line up to try to keep him from that second jewel. "I just basically stayed out the way".

The Preakness field won't have the star power of the Kentucky Derby.

The first leg of the horse racing's triple crown was run over the weekend, and it was a Vancouver-bred horse that came out victorious. "That said, his sire came back in two weeks and won the Preakness".

It was Smith's second Derby victory, his other one coming in 2005 aboard the 50-1 longshot Giacomo. "To me it's not only the toughest one but the most important one". "We saw something really great". "Mike took his time - we knew it was going to be a hot pace".

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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