Rich Strike is the official winner of the 148th Kentucky Derby. The 3-year-old thoroughbred caused quite an upset at the annual event on May 7, 2022, with an 80-to-1 longshot over Messier and Epicenter — completing the track in just 2.02.61!
RICH STRIKE WINS‼️
The second-biggest longshot winner (80-1) in the history of the Kentucky Derby 🐎
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) May 7, 2022
Churchill Downs hosted the Kentucky Derby (known for its hats!) on Saturday, with more than 100,000 spectators in Louisville to take in the 14 races. Learn more about first-time winner Rich Strike here!
He was trained and ridden by first-timers to the Derby
He was trained by Eric R. Reed of RED TR-Racing, LLC — and clearly well. Strike beat all the odds (80-1) to take the top spot, and was ridden by jockey Sonny Leon. The derby was the first ever for both Reed and Leon! What a feat. “We are entering and hoping and praying,” Reed said a week before the competition.
Eric Reed Was ‘So Happy’ After The Win
Reed was understandably shocked after Rich Strike took the big prize. “I don’t know how (to put the win into words). I fell down in the paddock when he hit the wire. I about passed out. I’m so happy,” Reed said to the Courier Journal shortly after. “This is something, you know, is the reason everybody does this, because we’re not supposed to be here, but I knew this horse loved the track, and we’ve been training so good all year,” he also said.
Rich Strike walked away with millions
Rich Strike is one rich horse — no pun intended. He walked away with $1,860,000 after his win, taking more than half of the total purse of the Run for the Roses, which was $3 million.
He had one win before this
While Strike wasn’t favored in the least for the Derby, he did have one single victory before this at Churchill. The horse won a $51,500 maiden claiming race last in Sept. 2021, which he took by 17 ¼ lengths at 10-1 odds.
He’s a Kentucky native
Rich Strike is born and raised in the southern state of Kentucky, and calls Louisville home! He has avidly trained in Kentucky with his “deep closer” style.