LOOK: Bodexpress runs entire 2019 Preakness Stakes without a jockey
The long shot lost John Velazquez right out of the gate after a restless opening to the race
Bodexpress was a long shot to win the 2019 Preakness Stakes entering Saturday's big race, but no one could have predicted just how he would, in fact, live up to his long odds at Pimlico Race Course.
Improbable may have dug himself a hole at the starting gate with some bucking right before the race began, but Bodexpress thoroughly outdid the Preakness favorite, bursting out of the gate so wildly that he knocked longtime jockey John Velazquez right off his back.
The craziness didn't end there.
After losing his jockey, Bodexpress proceeded to run, run and run some more -- all the way to the Preakness Stakes finish line -- without a jockey.
Credit Bodexpress for sticking it out solo and steering clear of the other horses for the duration of the race. Things obviously could've gone a whole lot worse had the horse decided to take a different perspective on his freedom.
For what it's worth, Velazquez shouldered the blame for Bodexpress's poor start, saying after the race that the horse was jumpy in the gate and that he couldn't settle him down. He may have inadvertently sparked an entirely new horse-racing fan base, too -- those pulling for horses without jockeys.
Jody Demling hit the superfecta in January's Pegasus World Cup
Richard Eng just nailed the 1-2 finish in the Belmont Stakes
Horse racing insider Richard Eng has revealed his picks for the 2019 Fleur de Lis Handicap
Everything you need to know to catch the second annual MLR title clash
The one-mile track at Santa Anita Park underwent extensive testing earlier this year
Takuma Sato hurt his chances at a victory more than he hurt Chris Welch