Mystik Dan wins the 150th Kentucky Derby after the photo finish

Mystik Dan (18-1) won the 150th Kentucky Derby on Saturday, and a photo finish was necessary to verify the result.

It was the first time in 28 years that the Kentucky Derby had been won by a nose, and only the 10th.

Track Phantom (41-1) and Just Steel (21-1) led at the ¾-mile mark, with the 3-1 favorite in Fierceness in third.


Mystik Dan #3, ridden by jockey Brian J. Hernandez Jr., crosses the finish line to win the 150th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 4, 2024 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Justin Casterline/Getty Images)

But Mystik Dan, ridden by Brian Hernandez Jr., was on the inside and broke through the field after the final turn.

Mystik Dan led by several lengths down the stretch, but Sierra Leone, second favorite at 5-1), slipped to the outside, pushing Japanese horse Forever Young toward the railing.

These three horses were close to each other, but it was Mystik Dan who crossed the line first.

Fierceness, the Todd Pletcher-trained colt, was the 3-1 morning favorite to win the Run of the Roses, but

Churchill Downs

A general view of Churchill Downs before the 149th running of the Kentucky Derby on May 6, 2023 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

This year's race caused far less controversy than last year's, as a dozen horses died at Churchill Days in the days, if not hours, leading up to this race.

Notably absent from this year's race will be Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, whose two-year ban has been extended to 2024, making it the third Kentucky Derby in which a horse trained by Baffert has not will not participate.

Six-time Derby winner Baffert was banned after 2021 Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit was stripped of the title following a failed post-race drug test – the horse died of a heart attack in December .

Churchill Downs Raceway

Visitors check out the new $200 million paddock at Churchill Downs on Wednesday, May 1, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. The 150th running of the Kentucky Derby is scheduled for Saturday, May 4. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)


Mystik Dan will now officially begin the quest for a triple crown at the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore on May 18.

This is a developing story. Check back for more updates…

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