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Kentucky Derby Chaos Is Horse Racing's Latest Stumble. What's Its Future?46:40
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Flavien Prat rides Country House to victory during the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby horse race at Churchill Downs Saturday, May 4, 2019, in Louisville, Ky. Luis Saez on Maximum Security finished first but was disqualified. (Matt Slocum/AP)
Flavien Prat rides Country House to victory during the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby horse race at Churchill Downs Saturday, May 4, 2019, in Louisville, Ky. Luis Saez on Maximum Security finished first but was disqualified. (Matt Slocum/AP)

With Meghna Chakrabarti

Controversy at Churchill Downs after Kentucky Derby winner Maximum Security is disqualified. Can the "sport of kings" be saved? Should it?

Maximum Security, the horse disqualified from the Kentucky Derby horse race, looks on after arriving at its home barn at Monmouth Park Racetrack, Tuesday, May 7, 2019, in Oceanport, N.J. (Julio Cortez/AP)
Maximum Security, the horse disqualified from the Kentucky Derby horse race, looks on after arriving at its home barn at Monmouth Park Racetrack, Tuesday, May 7, 2019, in Oceanport, N.J. (Julio Cortez/AP)

Guests

Gentry Estes, sportswriter at the Louisville Courier Journal. (@Gentry_Estes)

Jennie Rees, publicity director for the Ellis Park and Kentucky Downs race tracks, and the Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent & Protective Association, which is the legal representative at for owners and trainers at the state’s racetracks. She owns a racehorse with her husband, a trainer. (@TracksideJennie)

Randy Moss, horse racing analyst for NBC Sports. (@randy_moss_TV)

From The Reading List

Louisville Courier Journal: "Todd Pletcher on Kentucky Derby disqualification: 'The stewards did the correct thing' " — "Two-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Todd Pletcher spoke out in favor of the decision to disqualify Maximum Security from Saturday's race.

"'The correct rules were interpreted and applied in this case,' said Pletcher in an appearance Monday on ESPN's 'Outside The Lines' television program. '... The integrity of the sport is paramount. The safety of the horses and the riders is critical. And that's why these rules have to be applied. And if they're not in these type of situations, in future races then it could get really tactically dangerous. The stewards did the correct thing.'

"Stewards disqualified race winner Maximum Security for drifting into the path of other horses in the race, impeding their progress, moving second-place finisher Country House into the winner's circle."

New York Times: "Maximum Security’s Appeal of Kentucky Derby Disqualification Is Denied" — "An appeal by the owners of the disqualified Kentucky Derby winner Maximum Security was denied by state regulators on Monday just hours after it had been filed. The decision left the legal system as the only recourse to have the colt declared the champion of America’s most famous horse race.

"Gary West, who owns Maximum Security with his wife, Mary, said Monday he was skipping the Preakness Stakes, the second race in the Triple Crown competition.

"The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, in a letter from its general counsel, John L. Forgy, said the disqualification was not subject to appeal. It was not immediately clear whether West planned to take the next step and file a lawsuit over the ruling.

"The appeal, filed by the lawyer Barry Stilz on behalf of the Wests in Lexington, Ky., requested that all Derby purse money be placed in escrow “pending final determination.” It also requested access to video replays; notes from the stewards who ruled that Maximum Security had interfered with another horse; and the statements from trainers and jockeys that stewards used in their decision-making process."

New York Times: "The Kentucky Derby Winner Country House Will Skip the Preakness" — "There will be no Triple Crown attempt this year: Kentucky Derby winner, Country House, will not be in Baltimore for the Preakness Stakes after coming down with a respiratory infection Tuesday morning.

"The colt’s trainer, Bill Mott, said Country House was eating well and did not have a fever, but his blood work showed imbalances and he started on antibiotics.

"Mott did not rule out Country House running in the Belmont Stakes. In fact, he said when the colt crossed the finish line in second place at the Derby his plan was to take him back to his base at Belmont and train up to the third leg of the Triple Crown."

Stefano Kotsonis produced this hour for broadcast.

This program aired on May 8, 2019.

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