I'll Have Another surges to win 138th Kentucky Derby

I'll Have Another wins the Kentucky Derby with Mario Gutierrez atop on Saturday.

Story highlights

  • Jockey, horse called calm and confident
  • I'll Have Another charges past Bodemeister to win
  • Next leg of the Triple Crown is the Preakness Stakes
  • Winner took in nearly $1.5 million

I'll Have Another cut loose on the home stretch to run down Bodemeister and earn the first Kentucky Derby wins for his rider and trainer Saturday.

I'll Have Another, with a finish of 2:01:83, earned nearly $1.5 million of the $2.2 million purse.

That's quite a payoff for a horse that was purchased last year for the modest sum of $35,000.

Jockey Mario Gutierrez, making his Derby debut, called I'll Have Another a steady competitor.

"They didn't believe (I'll Have Another) could have made it this far," Gutierrez said. "But even if they wanted me to pick (any horse in the field), I would have stayed with him."

The winner had 15-1 odds; Bodemeister was at 4-1, according to the Derby website. Dullahan, with 12-1 odds, also made a late run and finished third.

I'll Have Another defeated Bodemeister by more than one length at the 1¼-mile classic, attended by a record Churchill Downs crowd.

I'll Have Another!

    Just Watched

    I'll Have Another!

I'll Have Another! 00:46
PLAY VIDEO
Calvin Borel: Kentucky Derby legend

    Just Watched

    Calvin Borel: Kentucky Derby legend

Calvin Borel: Kentucky Derby legend 03:25
PLAY VIDEO
Breeding Kentucky Derby studs

    Just Watched

    Breeding Kentucky Derby studs

Breeding Kentucky Derby studs 03:34
PLAY VIDEO

The 138th running was marked by a couple of other Derby firsts: It was the first victory for trainer Doug O'Neill and the first win from the No. 19 post position with a full field.

O'Neill called Gutierrez "the man" for his own performance.

"He was just so confident," O'Neill told NBC. "We had such a brilliant race."

Bob Baffert, a Derby stalwart and the trainer of Bodemeister, said he was "really proud of the way" his horse ran.

"He just came up a little tired," Baffert told NBC afterward.

Having won all three races he's participated in this year, O'Neill said he was excited for the next leg of the Triple Crown -- the 137th edition of the Preakness, set for May 19 in Baltimore. "Maryland, here we come," he said.

Gutierrez thanked all those involved in the effort as well as his family in Mexico and "my beautiful second family" in Canada.

This year's Derby was noted for a particularly strong field. Other favorites included Union Rags, at 5-1; Gemologist, 8-1, and Hansen, 13-1.

Went the Day Well, at 30-1, finished fourth.

A record crowd of more than 165,000 revelers took in what's called "the most exciting two minutes in sports" or "the fastest two minutes in sports."

Gotta Watch: The Derby professionals

Nicknamed the "Run for the Roses" for the garland that is draped over the winner, the Kentucky Derby traces its rich history back to 1875, when Col. Meriwether Lewis Clark Jr. decided to inaugurate a race in his home state of Kentucky.

Only 11 horses have ever won the Triple Crown, the most recent being Affirmed, 34 years ago. The third race is the Belmont Stakes, set for June 9.

      Kentucky Derby traditions

    • These days, Kentucky shares its derby with the world. But it remains, in essence, very local in flavor.

      First held in 1875, the Kentucky Derby is not only one of the world's most famous horse races but also one of the most iconic sporting events.
    • pkg mint julep history _00004024

      This drink may be associated with the Derby, but it has been around for centuries. The popularity of the mint julep is rooted as much in the nation's capital as it is in Louisville.
    • LOUISVILLE, KY - MAY 07: Jockey John Valazquez, riding Animal Kingdom #16, celebrates with the roses winning the 137th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 7, 2011 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

      England has Royal Ascot, and Australians flock to the Melbourne Cup, but few horse racing meetings capture the spirit of a nation quite like the "Run for the Roses."
    • HALLANDALE, FL - MARCH 31: Take Charge Indy, riden by Calvin Borel, races down the final streatch during the Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park on March 31, 2012 in Hallandale, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

      Jockey Calvin Borel has come from the small Louisiana town of St. Martinville to the summit of his profession -- the winners' enclosure at Churchill Downs.
    • LOUISVILLE, KY - APRIL 28: Union Rags is riden by Julien Laparoux during the morning excercise session in preparation for the 138th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on April 28, 2012 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

      Michael Matz was a member of the U.S. showjumping team that won the silver medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, and more recently a trainer of racehorses. But he will always be remembered for just one: Barbaro.
    • So, what is a mint julep? Simply: a drink of cognac, whiskey, or rum; sweetened with sugar, iced and flavored with fresh spearmint. For each, follow these basic julep preparation guidelines.
    • winning post kentucky breeders_00020723

      Winning Post gets rare access to Darley Stud in Kentucky to find out more about the business of elite horse breeding.