Velazquez Wins After All

DerbyPresser.jpgBy Anaridis Rodriguez — 05/07/11
John Velazquez was not Animal Kingdom’s original jockey. The horse’s rider was changed days before the race. But that did not hinder Velazquez’s plans to win with the underdog.
“I studied the races, and I knew the horses going into the race,” said Velazquez.
The colt was a long-shot at 30-1 odds before the race. But as John Velazquez and trainer Graham Motion celebrated in the winners circle, it was clear the odds did not matter anymore.
“We felt the most important thing about this race was a having a clean trip,” said trainer Graham Motion during the official press conference.
Animal Kingdom has become the fifth horse since 1900 to win the derby with four or fewer starts. His next big stop is the 136th Preakness Stakes, the second leg of the Triple Crown. The race will be held on May 21, 2011, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore.