Margaret Reid from Austin, Texas, banked $1.2 million after Justify’s triumph at the 144th Kentucky Derby over the weekend. Reid placed an $18 Pick 5 bet at Retama Park in nearby Selma, Texas.
In order to win the bet, the bettor would have had to pick the winner in 5 straight races on Derby day. Betting on Justify to win the Kentucky Derby, who was the pre-race favorite at 3-1, was actually the easy part. It was the other horses in the lesser events that really drove her profits.
Starting with the eighth race at Churchill Downs on Saturday, she picked Limousine Liberal to win the Churchill Downs Stakes. The 6-year-old did just that. She followed that triumph by wagering on Maraud to win the American Turf Stakes in the next race, followed by Funny Duck in the Pat Day Mile.
Funny Duck was actually her longest shot victory, entering the race with long 39-1 odds of coming out on top. Another longshot, 9-1 Yoshida, beat out the favorite, Beach Patrol, to win the Old Forester Turf classic in the 11th race of the day.
There was little drama in the main event, with Justify going on to enjoy a relatively easy victory despite rainy and muddy conditions. Justify won the race by 2 ½ lengths ahead of second place Good Magic and third place Audible.
Reid wound up taking home nearly as much as Justify’s owners with his victory. The victorious thoroughbred’s owners – WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, Starlight Racing and Head of Plains Partners – won $1.432 million thanks to the result of the Kentucky Derby.
Justify made additional history by becoming the first horse since Apollo way back in 1882 to win the Derby as a 3-year-old despite not racing in any event as a 2-year-old.
Rachel Bagnetto, spokeswoman for Retama Park in Selma, said, “It’s extremely rare. To bet that little amount of money and win $1.2 million is unheard of. In fact, it’s the first time it’s happened at Retama.”
Bill Belcher, Retama Park’s general manager, added, “She was in the sports bar when it happened. The whole bar went nuts. The odds are unbelievable, and the payout is so big. She was very excited.”
Justify will have the chance to continue his Triple Crown quest at the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore in a couple of weeks. If victorious there, he will try to seal the deal at the Belmont Stakes after that.
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