Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike bit Churchill Downs' lead pony and got punched for it

May 9, 2022

Kentucky Derby 2022 winner Rich Strike appeared to have plenty left in the tank after his stunning upset victory in the 148th Run for the Roses on Saturday.

Video from NBC Sports' broadcast of the Derby shows Churchill Downs outrider Greg Blasi and jockey Sonny Leon struggling to get Rich Strike under control in the moments after the race. At 80-1 odds, Rich Strike surged past the favorite, Epicenter, and Zandon down the stretch to become the second-biggest longshot to win the first leg of horse racing's Triple Crown.

After crossing the finish line, Rich Strike can be seen nipping at the lead pony's neck and its reins, which prompts Blasi to begin punching the horse's face.

"Still trying to get this horse under control here," NBC Sports' Mike Tirico says during the clip. "… still trying to bite the pony here as they try to get him under control."

The post-race moment sparked plenty of reactions on social media, with some Twitter users cracking jokes about the chaotic moment. Others questioned and offered explanations justifying Blasi's decision to punch Rich Strike.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) said in a statement that it plans to file a complaint against Blasi.

Source: Yahoo Sports (Photo by: Foxsports.com)