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Maximum Security (foaled May 14, 2016) is an American Thoroughbred racehorse who won the Florida Derby and Haskell Invitational Stakes in 2019. He is trained by Jason Servis for breeders and owners Gary and Mary West.[1] Maximum Security crossed the finish line first in the 2019 Kentucky Derby, but was disqualified for interference.

Maximum Security
SireNew Year's Day
GrandsireStreet Cry
DamLil Indy
FoaledMay 14, 2016
CountryUnited States
BreederGary and Mary West[1]
OwnerGary and Mary West
TrainerJason Servis
Record7: 5–1–0[2]
Major wins


Maximum Security is a bay colt who races as a homebred for his owners Gary and Mary West.[2]

Racing careerEdit

Maximum Security had "unspecified physical issues" as a two-year-old and was first entered in a maiden claiming race.[3] His first race was on December 20, 2018, which he won by ​9 34 lengths. In that race, he could have been claimed for $16,000, but was not claimed.[4] From there, he won two starter optional claiming races at Gulfstream Park in early 2019 before being entered in the Florida Derby.[2] Ultimately, he won the race by ​3 12 lengths and earned 100 points on the 2019 Road to the Kentucky Derby, instantly qualifying him for the Kentucky Derby.[3]

Kentucky DerbyEdit

In the Kentucky Derby, Maximum Security set the pace of the race. Going into the far turn, Maximum Security drifted out while still on the lead, impeding the progress of several other horses. While Maximum Security finished first, he was disqualified to 17th place after 20 minutes of deliberation by the stewards. Second-place Country House, who went off at odds of 65–1, was then awarded first.[5] Media broadcasts reported that Maximum Security was the first Kentucky Derby winner to be subsequently disqualified for an on-track infraction. The last winner to be disqualified was 1968 winner Dancer's Image, who was disqualified for a drug infraction.[6]

On May 14, 2019, the owners of Maximum Security sued in U.S. District Court in Frankfort, Kentucky, seeking to reinstate the win and distribute purse money based on the actual order of finish.[7] On June 8, the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission filed a motion requesting dismissal of the lawsuit, stating that it "threatens to turn the 'most exciting two minutes in sports' into tedious, protracted litigation."[8]

Post-Derby racesEdit

Maximum Security's owners chose not to enter him in the Preakness or the Belmont. He returned to the track on June 16, when he was made 1/20 favorite for the Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park, but sustained an upset defeat as he was beaten by a length by King For A Day.[9]

On July 20, Maximum Security won the 2019 Haskell Invitational Stakes at Monmouth Park.[10]

He was entered in the 2019 edition of the Pennsylvania Derby, but was scratched 5 days before the race due to a large colon nephrosplenic entrapment. [11]


Pedigree of Maximum Security, bay colt, May 14, 2016
New Year's Day
Street Cry
Machiavellian Mr. Prospector
Coup de Folie
Helen Street Troy
Dixie Union Dixieland Band
Shes Tops
General Jeanne Honour and Glory
Ahpo Hel
Lil Indy
A.P. Indy Seattle Slew
Weekend Surprise
Flagbird Nureyev
Up The Flagpole
Cresta Lil
Cresta Rider Northern Dancer
Thoroly Blue
Rugosa Double Jay
Rose (family: 1-n)


  1. ^ a b Shulman, Lenny (April 30, 2019). "Gary and Mary West Hope to Change Derby Fortunes". The Blood-Horse. Retrieved May 6, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d "Maximum Security profile". Equibase. Retrieved July 21, 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Maximum Security Much the Best in Florida Derby". Retrieved May 5, 2019.
  4. ^ "Undefeated Maximum Security is a puzzling Kentucky Derby contender". The Courier-Journal. Retrieved May 5, 2019.
  5. ^ Hammonds, Evan (May 4, 2019). "Country House Awarded the Kentucky Derby Via DQ". BloodHorse. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  6. ^ McCann, Michael (May 7, 2019). "Could the Controversial Finish at the Kentucky Derby Lead to a Federal Lawsuit?". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  7. ^ Sayers, Justin (May 15, 2019). "Maximum Security owners sue to restore Kentucky Derby win, seek $1.86M purse". The Courier-Journal. Retrieved May 16, 2019.
  8. ^ "Kentucky Horse Racing Commission Files Motion To Dismiss Derby DQ Lawsuit". June 11, 2019. Retrieved July 21, 2019.
  9. ^ Ehalt, Bob (June 16, 2019). "King for a Day Stuns Maximum Security in Pegasus". BloodHorse.
  10. ^ "Maximum Security escapes inquiry, wins Haskell". ESPN. AP. July 20, 2019. Retrieved July 21, 2019.
  11. ^ "Maximum Security forced out of Pa. Derby with colon issue". AP NEWS. September 18, 2019. Retrieved September 18, 2019.