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Mage comes from behind to win Kentucky Derby

Early favorite Forte scratched in hours before race marred by horse deaths
Mage crosses finish line at 2023 Kentucky Derby
Posted at 7:20 PM, May 06, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-07 10:58:53-04

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Two more horses died in the hours before 15-1 shot Mage won the Kentucky Derby by a length on Saturday, making it seven in all and casting a shadow over the 149th edition of the world's most famous race.

Mage had only one victory in three previous races before holding off Two Phil's in the stretch while covering 1 1/4 miles in 2:01.57 under Javier Castellano. The Hall of Fame jockey snapped an 0-for-15 skid in the Derby. He and trainer Gustavo Delgado are from Venezuela.

Forte, the early favorite, was scratched in the morning with a bruised foot, one of five horses that dropped out in the days leading to the race.

Two Phil's was second and 4-1 favorite Angel of Empire was third in front of a crowd of 150,335 on a warm and partly cloudy day at Churchill Downs.

Mage paid $32.42, $14.58 and $9.08.

Two Phil's returned $10.44 and $6.52 at 9-1 odds. Angel of Empire paid $4.70 to show.