Kentucky Derby 2022: won by longest shot in 109 years

Crazy story: Rich Strike, the winning horse, only made it into the race on Friday morning when another entrant was scratched, and then came from the back of the pack in the last 40 seconds. The video below shows the incredible win. There’s a lot not to like about horse racing, but this was spectacular. I was watching on TV and was dumbfounded – “What’s that horse coming up from behind?”

I was at my local race book, and looked to be winning my exactor (3 and 10 boxed), until Rich Strike came out of nowhere to win in the final furlong, by 3/4 of a length. The payoffs were insane. Equibase results chart, including prices, for those who haven’t heard:

Wow, those Pick 5 payoffs are really wild.
In 2005, my nephew put $10 on the 50-1 winner, Giacomo, and for years after that made a point of putting something on the horse with the longest odds. I don’t know if he had anything on Rich Strike today.

Anyone wondering how the drug tests will turn out?

This may sound like a strange question, but was one of the jockeys nicknamed “Red”?

I was watching it too. What was personally remarkable for me is that normally in televised horse-racing I don’t notice a lot of the bold, astonishing moves until I can rewind it over and over and watch in more detail and I don’t watch racing much. Like, only the Derby probably.

But this time, on a long tele-shot of the horses running towards the camera out of the final turn to the homestretch featuring the duel at the front I saw some movement toward the back (middle of the screen) and this rider was passing horses and then skipped up toward the rail, still coming on.

I thought, which one of the favorites was playing possum and now is bolting up the ranks? Then, when he was up to the two leaders I thought, “thrilling running but now he can’t have enough to make it past those two.” (and I was still thinking it was some 6-1 ride).

I can’t keep track of all the odds and stories behind 20 horses and jockeys so I only recognize a few numbers as they’re running. One number I knew was 21 because it was the outside post position, was just entered the day before because of a late scratch, had very long odds, and I think was the one with loading problems at the post??

The guy giving the call was so focused on the front runners that I for once recognized the horse, by number, before the announcer called him! But i didn’t process it all until a moment later.

Wow. I just thought it was incredible riding and passing movement and I would have been thrilled even if it had been a 5-4 obvious pick.

What was it… something like $150 for the Win?

Final numbers 163.60 / 74.20 / 29.40 according to that Equibase link.

Over $300K for the superfecta. Pretty cool for somebody. I always record and fast forward through it, but did NBC even show DJT? He was in the house, I understand.

Red Pollard?

Can you explain to a non-gambler like me what that means? If I had bet on Rich Strike to win and bet nothing else, how much would I have won on a one-dollar bet?

The minimum on a Win, Place, or Show bet is $2, so you’d have to bet that.

Regardless, what those numbers mean is that if you wagered $2 to Win (first place only) on Rich Strike, you’d collect $163.60. If you bet him to Place (finish first or second), you’d collect $74.20. If you bet him to Show (finish first, second, or third), you’d collect $29.40.

Thank you.

Thanks for showing that video. They didn’t even talk about Rich Strike until the last two or three seconds of it!

I’m surprised they knew his name. This could be the greatest thoroughbred of all time, or just a lucky day for him. After the race, running a mile in just over two minutes, he was still full of energy and barely controllable. He may be the greatest thoroughbred in history, or maybe he just got lucky, but these days I wouldn’t be surprised if they turned up some drugs. I hope not really, and I hope it’s not a lucky day for him either, if he can run like that through the next two legs of the Triple Crown he will be considered the greatest thoroughbred going back to at least to Secretariat.

That was a Secretariat/Man o’War level of come from behind action. Some horses just take a while to get their feet under them and really get going, guess this is one of those horses. That overhead of him winding through the traffic jam was epic, give that jockey a big bonus!

It was also the fastest first quarter-mile in Derby history. I imagine that the front-runners were running out of energy in the final stretch, since it seemed like Rich Strike was just flying past them.

Well, the Derby is always a challenge–it’s a very long race for a three year old and a lot of horses aren’t up to that length of effort at that age. Races for two year olds tend to be a lot shorter, and that last quarter mile tends to be gruelling for the horses.

If racehorses didn’t have an aspirational name much more often than humans, I’d almost “be bold” and just add Rich Strike to their list of aptronyms.

Here’s why I ask. I went to a Weird Al concert on Friday evening. The opener was comedian Emo Phillips. During his set, he said he was friends with a jockey who was in the Derby the next day, so he recorded a message of the whole audience saying “good luck, Red!”

I have no idea if it was true, or if he just made the whole thing up as a joke. I was just curious who it might have been.

Yeah - they showed him briefly. Long blue tie. No Melania.

I also saw his # before the announcer mentioned him and said, “That’s the long shot 21 horse!” His move around Messier was amazing - but also amazing was how wide the other horses ran and the lanes they left along the rail.

I also figure folk in the winner’s camp likely laid a bit of money on their pony, and likely boxed it w/ the 2 faves. Bet a bunch of them made a tidy profit.