JOCKEY OBJECTIONS AND STEWARD INQUIRIES IN THE KENTUCKY DERBY

The 1921 Kentucky Derby will be the one hundred forty seventh running of the race.  From 1875 through 2020, there were seven jockey objections and/or steward inquiries, with two disqualifications of winners and another disqualification of a fourth-place finisher.

Jockey objections/steward inquiries that did not result in disqualification:

2001

Jockey John Velazquez, rider of second-placed Invisible Ink, claimed that Jorge Chavez on first-placed Monarchos interfered with his colt at the quarter pole.

1959

Jockey Bill Boland on second-placed Sword Dancer claimed foul against Bill Shoemaker and Tomy Lee.  The two horses battled down the stretch and bumped.  The stewards judged that Sword Dancer was the aggressor rather than Tomy Lee.

1933

In what was the roughest-riding Kentucky Derby of all time, known as the “Fighting Finish” and captured in the classic photo shown below, Don Meade and Broker’s Tip prevailed by the slimmest of margins.  Jockey Herb Fisher on runner-up Head Play claimed foul.

1880

Jockey Jimmy Lakeland on runner-up Kimball claimed foul against the winner Fonso, ridden by George Lewis.

Jockey objections/steward inquiries that resulted in disqualification:

2019

Second-placed Country House and jockey Flavien Pratt were elevated to first even though the ostensible winner Maximum Security, ridden by Luis Saez, did not interfere with Country House.  Rather, Maximum Security interfered with also-rans War of Will and Long Range Toddy.  Maximum Security was disqualified and placed seventeenth behind Long Range Toddy.  This was the only time a Kentucky Derby winner was disqualified for an in-race incident.

1984

The stewards moved fourth-placed finisher Gate Dancer, with Eddie Delahoussaye aboard, to fifth place for stretch interference with Sandy Hawley and Fali Time.  The latter was moved to fourth place.  (Later that year, in the inaugural Breeders’ Cup Classic, Gate Dancer was again disqualified, this time from second place and moved to third for bumping Slew o’ Gold in the stretch.)

1968

Winner Dancer’s Image was disqualified when his post-race urinalysis detected phenylbutazone, a nonsteroidal inflammatory drug.  After extensive litigation, the Kentucky Supreme Court upheld the disqualification in April of 1972.

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