In the muddy mess of a rain soaked Churchill Downs, jockey Calvin Borel continued his mastery of the track as he guided Super Saver to victory in the Kentucky Derby. Super Saver had gone off as an 8-1 choice behind 6-1 favorite Looking At Lucky, and Borel took the ‘Run For The Roses’ for the second consecutive year and an unprecedented third time in four years. In the only Derby Borel didn’t win in the last four years he finished in the money, guiding Denis of Cork to a third place finish in 2008.
Borel became the ninth jockey to win the Kentucky Derby at least three times. Eddie Arcaro and Bill Hartack both won it five times while Bill Shoemaker has won it four times. Angel Cordero Jr., Kent Desormeaux, Gary Stevens, Issac Murphy and Earl Sande are the others to have won three Derbies.
After the race Bob Baffert, who watched race favorite Lookin At Lucky finish sixth, gave Borel his due credit:
“This Calvin Borel, you got to give him credit, he knows how to win this race. He gets right on top of that rail, takes advantage. Smart rider; he owns this track. The thing about Calvin is he takes control of the race. He’s great here. He’s a great rider and he can get it done.”
Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas concurred:
“Used to be Pat Day, now I think Calvin owns Churchill Downs. He’s got a great feel for it and they’re running for him and his confidence is sky high. He’s just a great rider, too, a great horseman in a lot of ways.”
Super Saver’s trainer Todd Pletcher also praised Borel:
“I said earlier in the week that Calvin Borel is a great rider anywhere he goes, but for some reason at Churchill Downs he’s even five lengths better. He’s just figured out Churchill Downs. He knows how to ride this track, he gets along with the colt really well.”
Super Saver won by 2 lengths over second place Ice Box. Paddy O’Prado finished third. Make Music for Me was fourth, followed by Noble’s Promise, Lookin At Lucky, Dublin, Stately Victor, Mission Impazible, Devil May Care, American Lion and Jackson Bend.Discreetly Mine was 13th, followed by Dean’s Kitten, Conveyance, Homeboykris, Sidney’s Candy, Line of David, Awesome Act and Backtalk.
Ross Everett is a freelance sports writer and respected authority on football betting. His writing has appeared on a variety of sports sites including sports news and sportsbook directory sites. He lives in Southern Nevada with three Jack Russell Terriers and a kangaroo. He is currently working on an autobiography of former energy secretary Donald Hodell.