Tahlequah Daily Press

Sports

May 5, 2012

I'll Have Another rallies to win Kentucky Derby

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — I'll Have Another looked like just another horse at the Kentucky Derby.

Until the final furlong, that is.

That's when the chestnut colt — sold for a paltry $11,000, ridden by a rookie jockey hardly anyone knew and stuck in an outside post — blazed past highly regarded Bodemeister to win by 1 1-2 lengths on Saturday, beating one of the deepest fields in years.

I'll Have Another stormed out of post No. 19 — the first winner from there in 138 runnings of the Derby — and bided his time back in mid-pack while Bodemeister set a blistering pace on a muggy, 85-degree afternoon at Churchill Downs.

"He's an amazing horse. I kept telling everybody, from the first time I met him, I knew he was the one. I knew he was good," jockey Mario Gutierrez said. "I said in an interview, even if they allowed me to pick from the whole rest of the field, I would have stayed with him, 100 percent, no doubt about it."

Making his Derby debut at 25, Gutierrez got his chance to ride I'll Have Another after trainer Doug O'Neill and owner J. Paul Reddam happened to see him at Santa Anita in Southern California.

"I don't know if he won or not, but he really looked good in the irons to me," said Reddam, who owns CashCall, a lending company in Anaheim, Calif. "I said, 'We need to try some new blood.'"

It was another chapter in Gutierrez's unusual route to the Derby winner's circle. He followed in his father's footsteps as a jockey, getting on quarterhorses in Veracruz, Mexico, at 14. After a stint in Canada, he eventually started getting noticed on the West Coast, especially after winning the Santa Anita Derby last month.

"Top trainers, top owners, of course, they're not going to know anything about me," he said.

Still, Gutierrez was largely a mystery to the record crowd of 165,307, who didn't know 15-1 shot I'll Have Another or the jockey had the right stuff until the 20-horse field turned for home. That's when Gutierrez, who moved up between horses around the final turn, positioned his colt not far from the rail and set him down to run.

"I know my horse was reaching every single step of the way, but I wasn't going to stop riding until I was passing the wire," he said. "That is when the horse race is finished."

I'll Have Another overhauled a tiring Bodemeister to win by 1 1-2 lengths. He paid $32.60, $13.80 and $9. He ran 1 1-4 miles in 2:01.83.

Bodemeister, trained by three-time Derby winner Bob Baffert, was second and returned $6.20 and $5.60 as the 4-1 favorite. Dullahan was a neck back in third and paid $7.20 to show.

O'Neill didn't waste any time vowing that I'll Have Another will go on to the Preakness in two weeks.

"Maryland, here we come, baby!" he said.

They'll go to Pimlico as one of the favorites as a result of I'll Have Another's Derby win and his catchy name. It has nothing to do with alcohol; it's Reddam's response to his wife's nightly query of "Do you want any more cookies?" as he lounges on the couch.

It's an offer the portly Reddam rarely refuses.

I'll Have Another made his way to the starting gate accompanied by his stable pony, Lava Man, another cheap purchase turned into a career winner of more than $5 million by O'Neill. The trainer has made his name predominantly in Southern California, although he's won three Breeders' Cup races.

One of his best horses, Steviewonderboy, was the winter favorite for the 2006 Derby before being sidelined by injuries early that year.

"When you tell people you're in the horse racing game, they ask you, 'Have you won the Kentucky Derby?'" O'Neill said. "Now I can say, 'Yes, I have, 2012.'"

A hot pace was anticipated from speedster Trinniberg, although, surprisingly, it was Bodemeister under jockey Mike Smith who bolted to the front and forced Trinniberg to take a backseat. In the late afternoon heat, Bodemeister set impossibly fast fractions. He ran the opening quarter-mile in 22.32 seconds and the half-mile in 45.39.

"I told Mike, 'Look, if he breaks great and feels like running, we can win it," said Baffert, who was hospitalized just five weeks ago following a heart attack in Dubai. "That's the only time I've run second where I've been happy because he ran his race."

Meanwhile, I'll Have Another was comfortably galloping along behind the speedsters. Gutierrez angled his colt clear on the final turn and took dead-aim at Bodemeister, who was clearly in front at the top of the stretch.

"I knew we were in trouble when I saw Doug's horse coming," said Smith, who won the Derby with 50-1 shot Giacomo in 2005.

Union Rags, the 5-1 second choice, never had a chance. He got pinched at the start and was trapped between rivals. Gemologist, the 8-1 third choice, lost for the first time in six starts, finishing 16th.

Hansen, the Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner and 2-year-old champion, faded to ninth.

Went the Day Well finished fourth, followed by Creative Cause and Liaison.

Rousing Sermon was eighth. Daddy Nose Best was 10th, followed by Optimizer, Alpha, El Padrino, Done Talking and Sabercat. Trinniberg was 17th, followed by Prospective, Take Charge Indy and Daddy Long Legs, who was last.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • ropin-make-a-wish.jpg Dirteater, others help Make-A-Wish

    The event will benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Tickets are $5, with kids 6 and under free.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Photo-for-Shinn-story.jpg Coaches preview Sooners season

    Toby Rowland addressed the elephant in the room even before Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops, defensive coordinator Mike Stoops and offensive coordinator Josh Heupel arrived at Journey Church on Wednesday.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Date set for Keys football physicals

    Before scheduled practices can begin in order to prepare for the season, players must first receive a physical.
    Next Tuesday, Aug. 5, Keys High School will be administering physicals in the high school cafeteria.

    July 31, 2014

  • Keys-Dakota.jpg Playing both sides of the line

    Recently, Keys High School football standout Dakota Matlock was nearly severely injured in a terrifying car wreck.

    Matlock is coming off a stellar gridiron season for Keys High School. On offense, Matlock ran for over 1,000 yards for the Cougars. In his sophomore season, Matlock led Keys in tackles from the safety position.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bassmaster.jpg Crossing, and fishing, the Delaware

    Bassmaster Elite Series anglers to compete Aug. 7

    BASS has fished out of some legendary venues over the years (including Chicago, Detroit and New Orleans), but never Philadelphia, which is host of the Bassmaster Elite at Delaware River, Aug. 7-10, 2014.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mison.jpg Mixon’s attorney says incident with woman self-defense

    The attorney for Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon says the incident that left a 20-year-old female OU student with multiple facial fractures was a case of self-defense.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hooper.jpg Sparking the flame

    Sequoyah High School’s Justin Hooper looking to lead this year

    Last season was Justin’s last chance to play alongside Cody at Sequoyah High School.
    Justin had to battle to win the Indians starting tailback. The coaching staff did not know who was going to be the Indians starting running back coming into fall practice.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • NSU-fishing-team.jpg NSU teams compete in fishing tournament

    Three teams from Northeastern State University’s Bass Fishing Team competed in the Fishing League Worldwide College Fishing Tournament on Grand Lake in Grove on Saturday, June 21.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Johnson, East win easily at All-State

    Jake Johnson was able to hold off Lawton MacArthur’s Trent Meisel at the Class 5A state tournament in May. On Monday at the All-State tournament at Cherokee Hills Golf Club, Johnson had it much easier against Meisel.

    July 29, 2014

  • McMillan-blackboard.jpg Hometown brothers team up for RiverHawks football

    Northeastern State’s football program will include a pair of hometown brothers for the 2014 season.
    Mason McMillan returns for his sophomore season, and this year he will be reunited with his younger brother, Kourtland. The brothers graduated from Tahlequah High School – Mason in 2013, followed by Kourtland in 2014. At Tahlequah, Mason and Kourtland shared the gridiron for one season.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

Poll

Do you think "blue laws" related to Sunday alcohol sales in Oklahoma should be relaxed? Choose the option that most closely reflects your opinion.

Alcoholic drinks should be sold Sundays in restaurants and bars, and liquor stores should be open.
Alcoholic drinks should be sold Sundays in restaurants and bars only; liquor stores should stay closed.
Liquor stores should be open Sundays, but drinks should not be served anywhere on Sundays.
The law should remain as it is now; liquor stores should be closed, and drinks should be served on Sundays according to county option.
No alcohol should be sold or served publicly on Sundays.
Undecided.
     View Results
Press Sports Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Stocks