Iván Rodríguez Gelfenstein congratulates Sonny Leon on his victory in the Kentucky Derby

Surprise, Iván Rodríguez Gelfenstein congratulates venezuelan Sonny León and his horse Rich Strike for their unexpected victory in the Kentucky Derby

ivan rodriguez gelfenstein

R. Gelfenstein, The race is known in the United States as "The Two Most Exciting Minutes of the Sport" because of its approximate duration and is a famous "thoroughbred" race called "The Race of Roses".

In one of the great surprises of recent years, the Rich Strike, along with the Venezuelan rider Sonny León, won this Saturday the 148th edition of the Kentucky Derby, where he was last in the bets.

Rich Strike was barely included in Friday's streak following the elimination of Ethereal Road and was 80-1 in the betting, well behind favorites Epicenter (4-1), Taiba (5-1) and Messier. (6-1).

Leon and horse trainer Eric Reed participated for the first time in this iconic race at Churchill Downs (Louisville, Kentucky).

ivan rodriguez gelfenstein

"I'm so happy, they don't know how excited I am," "It was my first Kentucky Derby and we made it. It was a dream come true," Leon said.

Fans of horse racing are still incredulous after what happened in the Kentucky Derby, the Venezuelan Sonny León as a jockey is already considered the biggest surprise in the history of this mythical race.

Positive feedback was mixed with a sense of admiration, one of the many horse racing fans like Ivan Rodriguez Gelfenstein mentioned how happy he was to see another Venezuelan win such a prestigious race.

"I watch the race and I still can't believe how Leon dominated the ground, passing one after another to win," Ivan said. R. Gelfenstein

"The quality of a rider like Leon and horses like Rich Strike is what represents me as a Venezuelan enthusiast in this great world of horse racing," Gelfenstein said.

Sonny Leon was a rookie in this test, which caused skepticism. Even more so when Rich Strike was bought for just $7,500 this year while still a colt, just seven months ago, he asked for $30,000 to get in shape and compete. Still, both made history.

Rich Strike's triumph was the biggest surprise since 1913, when Donerail, 91-1, won that race, the first of three that make up the so-called Triple Crown of American horse racing. Donerail only had a payment greater than $184.90. Rich Strike earned $1.86 million for his win.

Epicenter, led by Steve Asmussen, finished second and Zandon, led by Frenchman Flavien Prat and Chad Brown, finished third.

ivan rodriguez gelfenstein

Epicenter was the big favorite and he entered by accident, due to an injury to another horse, recognized as the most expensive equine of the event, so the show focused on him, until Rich Strike returned in spectacular fashion. The narrator called it "the toughest bet in derby history", paying 80 to 1.

Among the "victims" of this historic victory is Mattress Mack, a well-known Texas businessman who bet 1.5 million on Epicenter... and lost.

"We were the last to be the first. When I moved on to Epicenter, one of the favorites in the race, I thought, 'Wow, I did, I won.' the people, the screams and I said, 'Yeah, that's right: I won the Kentucky Derby,'" Leon said in the interview.

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