The Kentucky Derby, one of the most prestigious races on the world’s racing calendar, was tipped on its head at the weekend when Rich Strike staged the greatest upset in the history of the race. Ridden by Sonny Leon, Rich Strike wasn’t in the field until Friday when Ethereal Road was scratched.
The chestnut colt, trained by Eric Reed, made history coming with a sustained run from last to first to win the race. In doing so he became the longest priced winner (80/1) in the illustrious history of the famous race.
The win had everything to captures the public’s imagination. A fairytale win, insane odds, even more unbelievable winning bets and hilarious moments.
The rank outsider jumped from the extreme outside barrier and motored home to knock off the favourite Epicentre.
Rich Strike’s win was certainly amazing, but his manners were not what you would expect from a Kentucky Derby winner.
Before the race he savaged one of the attendant’s horses and that was just a sign of things to come.
After passing the winning post the winner began biting other runners – earning himself a punch in the nose from another jockey.
When the Clerk of the Course tried to take hold of the horse, he was having none of it and had a go at his mount. Not content to try and bite the horse he also tried to take a piece out of the Clerk of the Course’s leg.
Perhaps he was just asserting his authority after some unflattering comments about his inclusion in the race.
His connections are adamant that this was not his normal behaviour, and he is in fact a lovely quiet horse. There are a few riders and attendants who will need more than words to convince them.
Proving dreams can come true Rich Strike’s win not only changed the lives of his connections but also the few lucky punters who cashed in. One punter reported to have collected $1.8 million and another’s $5 bet netting them $74k – it is a return we everyday punters can only dream of.
Lucky Strike might have been a ‘sore winner’ but his photo proves winners truly are grinners.