Owner of Maximum Security appeals Kentucky Derby disqualification, pulls horse from Preakness

Luis Saez jockey of Maximum Security reacts after learning of his disqualification

Maximum Security led Saturday's 145th running of the Derby nearly wire to wire, but he was disqualified in a unanimous decision by three stewards who ruled that he had drifted into the path of several other horses as the lead pack turned for home.

The Wests are appealing the stewards' decision to disqualify Maximum Security in ruling that he "drifted out (of his running lane) and impacted the progress" of other horses in the race. Stewards elevated runner-up Country House, a 65-1 long shot, to the winner's circle after determining that Maximum Security impeded his path and two others' exiting the final turn.

Country House became the second-biggest long shot ever to win in the run for the roses.

Country House will likely be prepped for the Preakness Stakes. Maximum Security's jockey Luis Saez said the noise of the 150,729 fans unnerved the horse, but he quickly got him back under control. He continued, "Only in the days of political correctness could such an overturn occur".

Before Saturday, the horse that crossed the wire first was never taken down because of an on-the-track objection in the 145-year history of the Kentucky Derby.

Maximum Security will not be participating in the Preakness Stakes in two weeks, West added, solidifying that, even if the decision is reversed, he won't be able to earn the Triple Crown.

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USA TODAY is reporting that the horse's owners have officially filed an appeal.

Maximum Security, whose wire-to-wire triumph in the Kentucky Derby went for naught after stewards disqualified the bay colt for interference following a video review, will not run in the second leg of the Triple Crown.

'The best horse did NOT win...' Maximum Security deserved to win the Kentucky Derby.

Critics of the disqualification include US President Donald Trump, who said the decision was "not a good one".

In the Monday morning interview, West also criticized the Kentucky Derby for allowing 20 horses in the race rather than 14, saying that the crowded field increases the risk of horses colliding.

Plus, trainer Bob Baffert - who had three horses in the Kentucky Derby - said Monday that all three came out of the race well but only Improbable (one of the Derby favorites who finished fourth after getting penned in at the start of the race) is under Preakness consideration "right now".

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"I was bit shocked and surprised that the (race) stewards wrote a statement that was probably prepared by their lawyers and refused, literally refused, to take a single question from the media", West said. "It's always a roughly run race".

Beyond the Triple Crown, NBC Sports broadcasts some of the most important and prestigious events in all of horse racing.

"The revenge motive doesn't even enter into my mind", West said.

Saturday's mess, though, proved that the hype generated by a giant field isn't worth it.

"Both horses are very well-suited for the Belmont, but now we got to rethink that, and certainly probably for Country House".

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Ultimately, the stewards decided that Maximum Security's movement on Saturday's sloppy track was, in fact, an impediment. He said everyone always seeks a clear outcome, where "everybody can recognize the horse as the great athlete he is".

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