Lucky Colt Wins Kentucky Derby
A champion on the track, Lookin at Lucky came of age as a sire in 2018 with five time Grade I winner Accelerate and his Grade I winning mare Wow Cat and kept the momentum going on Saturday when progressive colt Country House (3c Lookin at Lucky x Quake Lake, by War Chant) won the $3million Grade I Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs.
The Bill Mott trained colt was second past the post on a rain sodden track behind Maximum Security, but was awarded the victory in the stewards room after the winner was deemed to have caused significant interference during the run.
Barbara Borden, Chief Steward for the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, offered a brief, prepared statement while not taking questions from the large press corp on hand.
“We had a lengthy review of the race,” she said. “We interviewed the affected riders. We determined that [Maximum Security] drifted out and impacted the progress of [War of Will], in turn, interfering with [Long Range Toddy] and [Bodexpress]. These horses were all affected, we thought, by the interference. Therefore, we unanimously determined to disqualify number [Maximum Security] and place him behind [Long Range Toddy].”
Country House gained the benefit of the decision to be elevated to first place taking his overall record to two wins and three placings from seven starts with prizemoney topping $2.1 million.
‘Well, the entire trip was good,” said winning rider Flavien Prat said. “He broke well and just put me in the race. He was traveling really well the entire race. And once I got him outside and I started to make my move, well, Maximum Security, he kind of drift out and turned us sideways. Like you say, the two horses inside of me had a lot more trouble than I did, but it affected me anyway.”
Country House becomes the first Kentucky Derby winner for Hall of Famer Bill Mott.
“You know, as far as the win goes, it's bittersweet,” Mott said.
“I would be lying if I said it was any different. You always want to win with a clean trip and have everybody recognize the horse as the very good horse and for the great athlete that he is. I think, due to the disqualification, probably some of that is diminished. But this is horse racing.”
The Kentucky Derby was the first Black Type win for Country House who had been knocking on the door of a big win having been second in the Grade II Fair Grounds Risen Stakes Stakes, third in the Grade I Oaklawn Arkansas Derby and fourth in the Fair Grounds Louisiana Derby.
He becomes the 44th stakes-winner for Lookin at Lucky and is his tenth Grade I winner.
Retained to race by his breeders, Country House is a half-brother to stakes-winner Mitchell Road and is the third winner from Quake Lake, a half-sister to Lookin at Lucky’s classy galloper Breaking Lucky, a Grade I placed, Grade III winner of over $1million in prizemoney.