LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – The owner of Maximum Security will file an appeal following the disqualification of his horse winning the Kentucky Derby.
Gary West spoke to the TODAY Show from Rancho Santa Fe, California where he said he would he was going to file an appeal Monday with the racing commission.
“Winning it (the Kentucky Derby) was probably the most euphoric thing I’ve probably ever had in our lives and disappointment when they took the horse down for the first time in history, I couldn’t, I couldn’t, we were stunned, shocked, and total and complete disbelief, it had never been done before.”
West said he did not have an alternative legally other than to file an appeal because the appeal had to be filed within 48 hours.
“I think this is something that’s big enough that the entire racing world is looking and I think they deserve an opportunity to really know what was going on,” West said. “I was a bit shocked and surprised that the stewards wrote a statement that was probably prepared by their lawyers and refused, literally refused, to take a single question from the media, so they’ve been about as non-transparent about this whole thing as anything I’ve ever seen in my life.”
When asked if he saw Maximum Security interfere with other horses West criticized Churchill Downs for having 20 horses slated to run in the Kentucky Derby saying, “Churchill Downs because they’re a greedy organization, rather than 14 like you have in the Kentucky Oaks and the Breeder’s Cup every other race in America, just because they can make more money, they’re willing to risk horses lives and people’s lives to do that.”
West added, “Our horse was in the lead the entire way around and they (the stewards) looked at exactly what they whole rest of the world looked at that they didn’t file a stewards inquiry, so I can’t imagine it was very obvious to them at the time either.
West said Maximum Security will not run in the Preakness. He said with no Triple Crown on the line there was no reason to run him in two weeks.