The weekend’s Kentucky Derby preps, the first in this year’s Champion Series, saw familiar faces get their pictures taken in New Orleans and Hot Springs, but an upstart in Florida knocked the horse of the same name out of the winner’s circle at Gulfstream Park, via a controversial disqualification.
In the oddly-run Grade II Besilu Stables Fountain of Youth, favored Upstart crossed the wire first, but the Gulfstream Park stewards deemed that he interfered with runner-up Itsaknockout, reversing the order of finish. The win gave the undefeated Itsaknockout his first Derby points, his 50 winner’s points good enough to land him in second place in the official Kentucky Derby prep standings.
Heading into the final turn, second-favorite Frosted appeared to be on his to victory, only to falter in the stretch when challenged by Upstart, winner of the Holy Bull at Gulfstream last month.
And that’s when the trouble began, with Frosted and Upstart appearing to bump, the latter coming over into the path of a charging Itsaknockout, in the eyes of the stewards compromising his chances of winning the race.
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Featured image of the Besilu Stables Fountain of Youth courtesy of Gulfstream Park