2016 Kentucky Derby Winner Nyquist Is an Elite Stud

Nyquist at the Preakness Stakes

Jockey Mario Gutierrez rides Nyquist at the 2016 Preakness Stakes. (Getty)

Nyquist won the 2016 Kentucky Derby mounted by jockey Mario Gutierrez. The then 3-year-old colt was the favorite to win the Run for the Roses with 2-1 odds at the start of the race. Owned by Reddam Racing, Nyquist was able to beat Exaggerator, who was 1 1/4 lengths behind, for the first place finish. You can watch a replay of the 2016 Derby in the video below.

Following the Derby, Nyquist prepared for his second Triple Crown Race. He competed in the 2016 Preakness Stakes as the 3-5 favorite, but finished in third place behind Exaggerator (5-2) and Cherry Wine (17-1). Despite the loss, Nyquist’s trainer, Doug O’Neill, set his sights on the third Triple Crown race, the Belmont Stakes.

Horse racing fans had been looking forward to a rematch between Nyquist and Exaggerator but the Derby-winning colt was unable to compete in the race due to illness. According to Daily Racing Form, the horse had a fever and a high white cell count.

“We’re going to put him on stronger antibiotics, get him right, get him back to California and let him relax and recover from the trip,” O’Neill told DRF via telephone at the time. “It is a bummer. It’s like a family member being sick. We’re going to focus on getting him better and we look forward to a summer campaign,” he added.

Nyquist at Pimlico

Nyquist at Pimlico Race Course. (Getty)

Thankfully, it didn’t take too long for Nyquist to return to the track — and to have another chance at beating Exaggerator. The two horses competed in the Haskell Invitational Stakes on July 31, 2016. It was Exaggerator who took the win, Nyquist unable to even complete the trifecta. He finished in fourth place behind American Freedom and Sunny Ridge.

Nyquist’s next race at the Pennsylvania Derby on September 24, 2016, would end up being his last, despite hopes to race him in the 2016 Breeder’s Cup. The horse ended up with a “puffy ankle” and couldn’t run.

“Though Nyquist is 100% sound and X-rays are clean, the timing unfortunately precludes us from the dream of having him run in the Breeders’ Cup Classic in our own backyard,” O’Neill said in a statement at the time. He was retired a short time later.

This past December, Nyquist underwent surgery for colic.

“The surgeons discovered a slight twist in his intestines during the procedure and were able to make the necessary repairs without complication. At this point, we are confident that he will be fully recovered and ready for the 2017 breeding season,” Darley at Jonabell Farm chief operating officer Dan Pride said in a release.

Despite his health issues and minor injuries, Nyquist had an amazing, record-setting career. He had eight wins in 11 starts and earnings totaling over $5 million. In 2015, he won the Eclipse Award for Champion Two-Year-Old.

“In winning the Derby with a perfect record, he became the first juvenile champion to do so since Seattle Slew in 1977. And in winning both the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and Kentucky Derby, he became only the second horse to achieve that historic grade I double, an honor he shares…with Street Sense.”

Nyquist wins the Kentucky Derby

Nyquist wins the 2016 Kentucky Derby. (Getty)

Nyquist entered stud this past February. He is part of Darley at Jonabell Farm in Lexington, Kentucky. His stud fee has been set at $40,000, putting him in an elite class.