The 2019 Kentucky is the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby and took place on Saturday, May 4, 2019, in Louisville, Kentucky.
The stewards, or racing officials who enforce the rules and regulations at racetracks, decided to disqualify Maximum Security, the clear winner of the race, in favor of runner-up Country House, marking the first time in the history of the Kentucky Derby that the winner was disqualified for an in-race foul.
The stewards disqualified Maximum Security from first place for drifting into the path of War of Will, who in turn had to alter course and affected several other horses. Maximum Security was dropped to 17th place behind Long Range Toddy, who it was determined had been affected by the dustup.
Kentucky Derby is the biggest wagering race in North America and one of the most famous races in the world. The decision took twenty two minutes for the stewards before announcing their decision. More than $6.2 million had been placed on Maximum Security to win.
President Donald J.Trump also expressed his views about unexpected results tweeting that the “best horse did NOT win the Kentucky Derby” and chalking it up to “political correctness.”
The Kentucky Derby decision was not a good one. It was a rough & tumble race on a wet and sloppy track, actually, a beautiful thing to watch. Only in these days of political correctness could such an overturn occur. The best horse did NOT win the Kentucky Derby – not even close!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 5, 2019
The only other disqualification in the race’s history occurred after the fact, when Dancer’s Image was disqualified for failing a drug test in 1968. The jockeys of Country House and Long Range Toddy both placed objections against Maximum Security.