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War of Will Owner Stands Up for his Colt and Jockey

Posted at 9:26 PM, May 07, 2019
Kentucky Derby entrant War of Will runs during a workout at Churchill Downs Thursday, May 2, 2019, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

There is disagreement between the connections for Maximum Security and War of Will as to what resulted in the Kentucky Derby disqualification for Maximum Security.

After viewing the footage, Maximum Security owner, Gary West, contends that War of Will ran up to close to his colt, possibly clipping heels, which forced Maximum Security to veer out to the right.

Gary Barber, the owner of War of Will, disagrees and released a statement Tuesday night to defend his three year old:

“It has recently been brought to my attention that Mr. Gary West stated on Fox News that my horse War of Will caused the infraction in the Derby. I categorically deny this false accusation. The video evidence irrefutably shows that his horse, Maximum Security, caused a major infraction that almost led to a catastrophe and in doing so, denied my horse and others of a better placing.

“The facts are Maximum Security is a great horse that crossed the line first in the Derby, but unfortunately committed a major infraction that denied him a Derby victory. I empathize with Mr. West on this fact and feel the pain of losing out, but Mr. West’s horse, and not mine nor my jockey Tyler Gaffalione, denied him the Derby victory and it is wrong for him to deflect blame anywhere else.

“I am very disappointed that War of Will was deprived of the opportunity to show his best because of Maximum Security, but I painfully accepted that as part of horse racing. Thankfully, I am glad both War of Will and Maximum Security survived the day unscathed and will be good to race another day!”

Both Maximum Security and War of Will are skipping the Preakness Stakes on May 18th.