The 135th Kentucky Derby is off and running ... in the mud!
2 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
As expected in a 19-horse race (minus I Want Revenge, a late scratch), it took time for the faster horses to find the front. In fact, eventual champion Mine That Bird cannot be found here among the early leaders.
3 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Mine That Bird (far bottom) ran the early part of the race in dead last.
4 of 16Heinz Kluetmeier/SI
After running in last place on the first stretch (pictured), Mine That Bird inhaled the field around the turn for home...
5 of 16Heinz Kluetmeier/SI
...He seemed to be picking off horses with every stride.
6 of 16AP
Prior to Saturday's race, Mine That Bird's last graded-stakes victory came in the Grade III Grey Stakes at Woodbine last October; and in that race, the colt ran on or near the lead for the entire 1 1/16 miles.
7 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Pioneerof the Nile (far right), a 4-1 favorite, briefly led the Derby before settling for second place.
8 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Atomic Rain didn't enjoy the same result of another 50-1 long shot (Mine That Bird). The colt finished the Derby in 16th place.
9 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
It's hard to believe Mine That Bird struggled to get out of last- or second-to-last-place at the start of the race. The colt's sizable lead in the final turn was never threatened.
10 of 16Adam Brimer/SI
The race seemed to have been set up perfectly for Pioneerof the Nile in the stretch, but Mine That Bird ran by as though every other horse on the track were standing still.
11 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Jockey Calvin Borel stuck to a pre-race strategy of hugging the rail -- traditionally the dryest, smoothest spot on a muddied track.
12 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Calvin Borel was in a familiar place, along the rail and urging Mine That Bird to fly through the mud. Together they pulled off one of the greatest upsets in 135 years of America's most famous horse race.
13 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Mine That Bird won by 6 3/4 lengths on Saturday -- the second-largest margin of victory in Derby history (Assault, 1946 -- 8 lengths).
14 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Mine That Bird was originally sold for only $9,500 at a yearling auction two years ago, far below the price of most championship-pedigreed colts.
15 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Jockey Calvin Borel can now look forward to The Preakness, the second leg of racing's hallowed Triple Crown.
16 of 16Bill Frakes/SI
Jockey Calvin Borel, 42, has captured the Derby crown two times in three years (2007 -- Street Sense).
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