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Orb wins the 139th Kentucky Derby

6:06 PM, May 4, 2013   |    comments
Orb was the winner of the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby. (Photo: Jamie Rhodes, USA TODAY Sports)
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LOUISVILLE (USA TODAY) -- Orb won the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs with a furious rally in the homestretch.

The victory gave famed trainer Shug Mcgaughey his first Kentucky Derby victory.

The Derby had a maximum 20-horse field, but it was reduced to 19 Friday morning when Black Onyx, 50-1 on the morning line, was scratched due to a chipped bone in his front left ankle. Black Onyx had been in the No.1 position in the starting gate, which was left open for the Derby.

Rain fell steadily Saturday afternoon during the undercard, and the track was officially listed as "sloppy." The downpour had many women scrambling to cover their fancy Kentucky Derby hats with plastic. But some younger fans body-surfed on the muddy infield.

The scratch came too late for alternate Fear the Kitten to get into the race. Fear the Kitten had been 21st in the new point standings used to determine this year's qualifiers. The deadline for him to get in the race was 9 a.m. Friday.

The race was run 40 years after the historic 1973 win by Secretariat in a record winning time of 1:59 2/5. The time still has not been equaled.

The Triple Crown series now moves on to the May 18 Preakness in Baltimore, followed by the June 9 Belmont Stakes in New York. No horse has won the Triple Crown since Affirmed in 1978.

Among the many celebrities in attendance were quarterback Robert Griffin III of the NFL's Washington Redskins, former NBA stars Scottie Pippen and Julius "Dr. J." Irving, former major league baseball player Ken Griffey Jr., former NFL quarterback Warren Moon, entertainer Joey Fatone (N Sync) and actress Jane Seymour.

Fans, employees and media entering Churchill Downs were subject to increased security in the aftermath of the bombing at the Boston Marathon. New measures included bans on coolers and large purses.

Gary Mihoces, USA TODAY Sport

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