Kentucky Derby notes: Bolt d’Oro starts well but finishes a tired 12th
Santa Anita was well represented in Saturday’s Kentucky Derby. Besides the winner Justify, horses stabled in Arcadia got a fourth from Instilled Regard, trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, a fifth from My Boy Jack, trained by Keith Desormeaux, a 10th from Solomini, like Justify trained by Bob Baffert, and Bolt d’Oro, trained by Mick Ruis.
Bolt d’Oro spent the first mile of the race hanging near the lead, then he had no more and finished 12th.
“I just didn’t have enough horse to run with the winner,” jockey Victor Espinoza said. “I was where I wanted to be. I was stalking the favorite all the way around but I was pretty much done at the half-pole.”
Bolt d’Oro was scoped after the race to see if there were any problems with his throat or breathing but he was clean. Still, Ruis plans to skip the Preakness rather than face Justify on two weeks rest.
“Victor said he tapped him a few times and when he didn’t respond, he knew he was in trouble and he just didn’t feel like beating him up,” Ruis said.
“You’ve got to be disappointed when you don’t win,” Ruis said. “You come here to win. Hopefully next year, we’re here again and we can win this thing.”
Drayden Van Dyke, who usually rides Justify in timed workouts, was chosen to ride in his first Kentucky Derby but not for Justify, but Instilled Regard. He finished fourth at 85-1.
“I got slammed out of the gate pretty good,” Van Dyke said. “I would have liked to be a tad bit closer but I ended up with a pretty good trip without getting stopped.
“I got in a little situation turning for home as I had to weave through a couple of horses but I got a clear run down the lane.”
Hollendorfer, a man of few words, looked at the race this way.
Spectators watch Promises Fulfilled, ridden by jockey Corey Lanerie, and Justify, with Mike Smith aboard, lead the field into the first turn during the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby.(Jamie Squire / Getty Images)
Promises Fulfilled on the rail and Justify on the outside begin to churn around the first turn during the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby.(Rob Carr / Getty Images)
Mike Smith guides Justify down the homestretch ahead of the field during the 144th Kentucky Derby.(Darron Cummings / Associated Press)
Justify, with Mike Smith aboard, nears the finish line ahead of Audible (5) and Good Magic (6) during the Kentucky Derby on Saturday(Kiichiro Sato / Associated Press)
With the Chuchill Downs spires in the background, Mike Smith rides Justify to victory in the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby.(Morry Gash / Associated Press)
Mike Smith celebrates after riding Justify to victory during the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby.(Jeff Roberson / Associated Press)
Jockey Mike Smith celebrates after riding Justify to victory during the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby.(Darron Cummings / Associated Press)
Jockey Mike Smith poses with Justify for a photo in the Winner’s Circle after winning the 144th Kentucky Derby.(Sean M. Haffey / Getty Images)
“We ran fourth,” he said. “It’s a lot better than running back more than that. I’m not sure what we’ll do, but I think we’ll freshen him up.”
My Boy Jack was 30-1 on the morning line, but when the advance wagering came in Saturday morning, he was bet down to 5-1, a position he kept for most of the day until he bumped to 6-1.
He ran a good race but his late running style was no match for Justify, who never tired. He finished fifth.
“At the three-eighths pole, I had a wall of horses come back to me,” said jockey Kent Desormeaux, who has won this race three times. “My argument, in the end, would be that he probably would have been third.”
Kent’s brother, Keith, is My Boy Jack’s trainer.
“He got stopped cold,” Keith Desormeaux said. “Awesome performance to recover and run fifth. Love, love, love his heart.”
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