LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Long shot Black Onyx was a late scratch for the Kentucky Derby because of a chip in his left ankle, leaving 19 horses to vie for the roses.
The scratch occurred Friday after early wagering for the race had opened, so Black Onyx's No. 1 post position will be left empty on Saturday. The remaining horses will stay in their original starting gate positions.
Trainer Kelly Breen said the colt looked good training on Friday, but he had some swelling in the ankle, so an X-ray was taken which revealed the chip.
"He's back in the barn. He's not feeling that bad because he just tried to bite me," Breen said. "It couldn't have been worse timing."
He said it's too early to know if Black Onyx will need surgery or just recover on his own.
Jockey Joe Bravo was left without a Derby mount. He hasn't won the race in two previous attempts.
"I'm just very thankful that the horse is going to be OK," he said. "I'm just really sorry for the whole team."
The scratch came too late for Fear the Kitten to get into the Derby. The colt was on the list of also eligibles as the 21st qualifier in the point standings which determine the field.
Black Onyx qualified for the Derby by winning the Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park. He was 50-1 on the morning line.