Searching for smart, safe news you can TRUST?

Support safe, smart, REAL journalism. Sign up for our Axios AM & PM newsletters and get smarter, faster.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Searching for smart, safe news you can TRUST?

Support safe, smart, REAL journalism. Sign up for our Axios AM & PM newsletters and get smarter, faster.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Denver news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Des Moines news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Minneapolis-St. Paul news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Minneapolis-St. Paul

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tampa-St. Petersburg news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa-St. Petersburg

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Country House #20, ridden by jockey Flavien Prat, War of Will #1, Maximum Security #7, ridden by jockey Luis Saez and Code of Honor #13. Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images

The 65-1 long shot Country House won the Kentucky Derby Saturday in Churchill Downs, Louisville, Kentucky, after race favorite Maximum Security was disqualified for impeding another horse on crossing the finish line.

Why it matters: It's the first time a stewards' inquiry has disqualified the first horse across the line in the race's 145-year history. Bettors who backed Maximum Security to win, place or show lost about $9 million, ESPN reports, citing TwinSpires.com — which said it'd refund win bets on the Jason Servis-trained horse, ridden by Luis Saez.

By the numbers: Churchill Downs said wagering on the Derby rose 10% to a record $165.5 million, exceeding the previous mark of $149.9 million set last year. The record includes $4.1 million of handle bets in Japan. It's the first year the race has been offered for wagering there. A $2 bet on the Bill Mott-trained Country House, ridden by jockey Flavien Prat, pays $132.40 — the second-highest payout in Derby history, AP notes.  

  • The largest win bet on Country House was $2,500, according to TwinSpires.
  • 4-1 favorite Maximum Security was first across the Derby finish line by 1¾ lengths with a time of 2:03.93 over 1¼ miles, before being disqualified.
  • In 6 starts, 3-year-old colt Country House recorded 1 win, 2 seconds and 1 third for $260,175 in total career earnings, according to NBC Sports.

What they're saying: Maximum Security co-owner Gary West told AP: "I think this is the most egregious disqualification in the history of horse racing, and not just because it’s our horse." He told the news agency he's considering the next step — including a possible appeal.

The big picture: In 1968, Dancer’s Image was disqualified days after winning the Derby for failing a drug test.

Go deeper: Horse racing seeks normalcy in Kentucky Derby after unexplained Santa Anita deaths

Go deeper

12 mins ago - Podcasts

Bob Nelsen on AstraZeneca and his plan to revolutionize biotech

AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford on Monday reported promising efficacy data for their COVID-19 vaccine, which has less stringent storage requirements than the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and may be distributed earlier in developing countries.

Axios Re:Cap digs into the state of vaccine and therapeutics manufacturing with Bob Nelsen, a successful biotech investor who on Monday launched Resilience, a giant new pharma production platform that he believes will prepare America for its next major health challenges.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Updated 19 mins ago - Energy & Environment

Unpacking Joe Biden's decision to tap John Kerry as his climate envoy

Photo: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden is naming former Secretary of State John Kerry as a special presidential envoy for climate change.

Why it matters: The transition team's announcement sought to show that it will be an influential role, noting that Kerry — a former Massachusetts senator and the Democrats' 2004 presidential nominee — will be on the National Security Council.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Oxford and AstraZeneca's vaccine won't just go to rich countries

Waiting, in New Delhi. Photo: Jewel Samad/AFP via Getty Images

While the 95% efficacy rates for the Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines are great news for the U.S. and Europe, Monday's announcement from Oxford and AstraZeneca may be far more significant for the rest of the world.

Why it matters: Oxford and AstraZeneca plan to distribute their vaccine at cost (around $3-4 per dose), and have already committed to providing over 1 billion doses to the developing world. The price tags are higher for the Pfizer ($20) and Moderna ($32-37) vaccines.