American Pharoah captured the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby in impressive fashion, remaining near the lead throughout the 1 1/4-mile distance race before overtaking Dortmund and Firing Line down the stretch.
With a sweeping move to the outside on the final turn and a powerful kick down the stretch with Victor Espinoza steering through traffic, American Pharoah proved to be the best in the field of 18 horses before a record crowd of 170,513 at Churchill Downs on Saturday in Louisville, Ky.
The Bob Baffert-trained colt with the misspelled name out-kicked second-place Firing Line, Dortmund and Frosted and crossed the finish line in 2:03.02.
American Pharoah was never worse than third and didn’t trail by more than a length at any point. At the final turn, Espinoza — who won the first two legs of the Triple Crown aboard California Chrome only to fall short in the Belmont Stakes last June — went wider than he probably needed.
But American Pharoah quickly overtook rail-riding Dortmund before out-kicking Firing Line, ridden by Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens, over the final 1/16th of a mile.