Morning Briefing: Readers disagree with Kentucky Derby decision to disqualify Maximum Security

Kentucky Derby
Maximum Security crosses the finish line to not win the Kentucky Derby.
(Jamie Squire / Getty Images)

More than a day has passed since Maximum Security was disqualified after apparently winning the Kentucky Derby, being placed 17th for impeding the progress of other horses. Second-place finisher Country House was raised to first place. But did the stewards who made the decision make the right call? Times readers who follow our Twitter account and those who subscribe to our horse racing newsletter vote no.

After 2,401 votes, here are the results to the question: Did Kentucky Derby stewards make the right call in disqualifying Maximum Security from the race?

Yes: 45.2%

No: 54.8%


Some comments, from both camps, on Twitter included:

From Billy Haney: “After watching the replay it wasn’t one particular horse that was guilty of impeding, it was the combination of both Maximum Security and Country House resulting in closing of the lane and if one is disqualified they both should be.”

From Catherine Garvin: “It’s a horse race on a sloppy rainy track. Stuff happens. Sorry, but this was a bad call on the part of the stewards. Cruel to take away the Kentucky Derby win of Maximum Security. Terrible call by the stewards and wrong.”

From Susie Mitchell: “That is B.S., with the track condition and there is no way he interfered with other horses. He was the winner...”


From Michael Mroz: “Well, I wouldn’t be that proud that my clearly beaten horse was placed first.”

From Tim Jenkins: “Rules are in place for the safety of both jockeys and horses. Without such rules, chaos ensues; man and animal are more likely subject to injury or death.”

From Ivan Mujica: “They did not take into consideration wet track conditions.”

From Beastly Bill: “Replay shows he impeded the horses. Rear legs between the horse he cut off. Lucky two horses and jockeys didn’t go down with serious injuries. He had to be disqualified!”

Bettors win

Some bookies had a heart of gold after the disqualification in Saturday’s Kentucky Derby. returned all wagers made on Maximum Security leading up to race day. Those bets that included fixed futures odds totaled in the “mid six figures.” Additionally, the site graded all prop bets involving Maximum Security and other horses as a win on both sides.

And they announced new odds Sunday, ones that are not good for fans of Country House. Will Country House win the Triple Crown?


Yes: 8-1

No: 1-15

It will be really interesting if Maximum Security returns to win the Preakness and Belmont Stakes. An uncrowned Triple Crown winner would be something talked about for years.

Not going

Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora says he will not join his team Thursday at the White House for the annual World Series champion’s visit.

Cora told El Nuevo Dia, “Puerto Rico is very important to me. During the winter, I spent a lot of time back home, visiting my family and friends. Unfortunately, we are still struggling, still fighting. Some people still lack basic necessities, others remain without electricity, and many homes and schools are in pretty bad shape almost a year and a half after Hurricane María struck. Even though the United States government has helped, there’s still a long road ahead and that is OUR reality. I’ve used my voice on many occasions so that Puerto Ricans are not forgotten and my absence [from the White House] is no different. As such, at this moment, I don’t feel comfortable celebrating in the White House.”

Some Red Sox players, including Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley Jr. and Xander Bogaerts, have also said they will not attend.

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