Mage wins Kentucky Derby in upset against odds

Reading Time: 2 minutes Mage, race horse, upsets favorites when winning the Kentucky Derby in 2023, historical race for jockey and trainer.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Mage, a race who was called “inexperienced” and a “legitimate concern” on the account of his abilities with the starting gate, defies the odds and wins the 149th Kentucky Derby.

Taking place May 6, the derby started off unusually as several horses had been scratched due to a variety of circumstances, including the initial favorite, Forte, who had got a bruised right foot before the race. Several horses died in the lead up to the race, leaving 18 horses to the usual 25.

This left a horse by the name of Angel of Empire to take the lead spot as the favorite to win the race, followed by Tapit Trice, Dema Sotogake, and Two Phil’s.

The race began with an early lead by #2 Verifying followed closely behind by #6 KingsBarns. For a large part of the race the favorite fell behind in the pack as these horses led through the first initial turn and part way through the second turn. By the last turn, Mage made a fast advance and took position at the front of the pack, followed closely behind by #3 Two Phil’s and # 14 Angel of Empire.

Not being able to bridge the gap, Mage maintained his head position and crossed the finish line as the winner of the first Triple Crown Race of the season. His odds were 15-1.

“He’s got a lot of heart,” Javier Castellano, Jockey of Mage, said about the chestnut brown colt. “He’s a little horse but a big heart.”

Castellano raced not just Mage into victory but himself into his first Kentucky Derby win, along with Mage’s trainer Gustavo Delgado.

“When I come to the United States, my first dream [was] go to the Kentucky Derby,” Delgado stated barely being able to process the win. Several people behind him were holding up the Venezuelan flag as he posed with the media.

The final line up for the race was Mage in first, Two Phils in second, Angel of Empire in third, and Disarm in fourth.

Mage will be looked at heavily as the coming races in the Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes, which are the next two steps within the Triple Crown championship of Thoroughbred Horse Racing. If Mage seeks to place himself in the hall of fame, he will need to win both races to earn the Triple Crown Trophy, which hasn’t been won since Justify won in 2018.

The Preakness Stakes Race will take place May 20, 2023.