At 9-2 odds, Always Dreaming was the pre-race favorite and did not disappoint, settling for the inside track early on and in second before Velasquez steered him to the front pretty quickly.
"He was running so gpod down the stretch," Velasquez said as Always Dreaming stayed the course up front.
This was the fifth consecutive Kentucky Derby that the pre-race favorite prevaild. Finishing in second a third, respctively were longshots: Lookin At Lee at 33-1, and Battle of Midway at 40-1. Velasqurez was pleased with the run by Always Dreaming, who covered the 1¼ miles in 2:03.59 and paid $11.40, $7.20 and $5.80.
"This is the best horse (trainer) Todd (Pletcher) and I have ever come to the Kentucky Derby with,'' Velazquez said. "Being behind me for 24 years together, a long time for him to still trust in me and give me the opportunity, it's not very often it happens in this business.''
Order of finish for the 143rd Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky:
1. Always Dreaming; 2. Lookin at Lee; 3. Battle of Midway; 4. Classic Empire; 5. Practical Joke; 6. Tapwrit; 7. Gunnevera; 8. McCraken; 9. Gormley; 10. Irish War Cry; 11. Hence; 12. Untrapped; 13. Girvin; 14. Patch; 15. J Boys Echo; 16. Sonneteer; 17. Fast and Accurate; 18. Irap; 19. State of Honor; 20. Thunder Snow.