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Rich Strike takes first on the Kentucky Derby in large upset : NPR

Jockey Sonny Leon reacts as Rich Strike wins the 148th working of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on Saturday.

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Jockey Sonny Leon reacts as Rich Strike wins the 148th working of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on Saturday.

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Rich Strike, who went in an 79-1 shot, is the winner of the 148th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, the primary cease of the 2022 Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing, in one of many largest upsets in Derby historical past.

Going into the race, Taiba and Epicenter have been co-favorites to win, with 5-1 and 4-1 odds, respectively. Many specialists had additionally predicted a win for Zandon, with 6-1 odds.

Twenty horses competed in what is commonly described as “the most exciting two minutes in sports,” which is about how lengthy it takes rivals to finish the 1 ¼-mile circuit. Rich Strike introduced residence the winner’s purse of $1.86 million, whereas Epicenter was awarded $600,000 and $300,000 for Zandon.

Every yr on the primary Saturday in May, greater than 150,000 spectators sporting their derby finest pour into the racetrack in Louisville, Ky., to partake within the longest working sporting occasion in U.S. historical past. Countless others tune in to observe the occasion and place their bets, with over $150 million altering fingers every year, in accordance with the Derby web site.

The race, also referred to as the “Run for the Roses,” is the primary cease within the Triple Crown sequence. The subsequent race, the Preakness Stakes in Maryland, is ready to happen in two weeks, adopted by the ultimate cease, the Belmont States in New York, on June 11.

Bob Baffert, coach of Medina Spirit, ultimately yr’s Kentucky Derby. Baffert was suspended after Medina Spirit examined optimistic for an unlawful substance following final yr’s race. As a outcome, Medina Spirit was disqualified.

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Bob Baffert, coach of Medina Spirit, ultimately yr’s Kentucky Derby. Baffert was suspended after Medina Spirit examined optimistic for an unlawful substance following final yr’s race. As a outcome, Medina Spirit was disqualified.

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Last yr’s derby winner, Medina Spirit, was disqualified in late February after failing a post-race drug take a look at final May. His coach, Bob Baffert, was suspended for 90 days and fined $7,500, however he denied any misconduct. Medina Spirit, who died this previous December, examined optimistic for betamethasone. The drug is used for ache administration and irritation however is prohibited to be used on race days.

The horse racing business has come beneath assault lately, having to endure by way of one scandal after one other. Twenty-seven folks have been indicted on federal fees in 2020 for an alleged doping scheme. And greater than 30 horses died at Santa Anita Park in California the yr earlier than.

However, modifications are forward: a brand new physique is ready to control each racing security and anti-doping management and set up a brand new nationwide set of requirements.

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