11/05/2010 4:49PM

Borel and Castellano fight in winner's circle after Breeders' Cup Marathon

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Jeannie Jeffery
Calvin Borel confronts Javier Castellano in the winner's circle after the Breeders' Cup Marathon.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Usually, when seen on national television in the Churchill Downs winner’s circle, Calvin Borel is grinning ear-to-ear after winning the Kentucky Derby.

Friday, a totally different side of Borel was on display for the nation to see as he cursed at and then attacked fellow rider Javier Castellano in the Churchill Downs winner’s circle. Several times Borel shouted "I’m going to kill you!" at Castellano after an incident during the running of the $500,000 Breeders’ Cup Marathon.

Borel threw several punches at Castellano and it took about a half-a-dozen people to keep Borel from attempting to do more damage to Castellano.

Borel, who has won three of the last four Kentucky Derbies, has become a national figure and one of the more popular jockeys in the nation. Since 2007, Borel has had audiences with the Queen of England, President Bush, and Jay Leno.

An out-of-control Borel was livid because Castellano, aboard Prince Will I Am, came off the rail at the five-sixteenths pole of the Marathon, forcing Martin Garcia, aboard Romp, to take up sharply, which in turn forced Borel to steady on A. U. Miner.

Prince Will I Am went on to finish second, 1 3/4 lengths behind Eldaafer in the Marathon, and A. U. Miner, who was forced to go seven wide, rallied to be fourth. The stewards immediately lit the inquiry sign and ultimately disqualified Prince Will I Am from second and placed him 10th, behind Romp. A. U. Miner, who finished fourth, was elevated to third behind Gabriel’s Hill, who was moved from third to second.

After weighing out at the scales, Borel brushed past people and wanted to find Castellano. Borel found him weighing out at the scale adjacent to the winner’s circle and grabbed Castellano by the collar and put his finger in his face while shouting expletives at him. After being separated by personnel in the winner’s circle, Borel kept moving toward Castellano, yelling "I’m going to kill you!" while more people attempted to restrain him. An ever angrier Borel broke free from his handlers and threw several punches at Castellano before being restrained.

A few more people were needed to restrain Borel, before he was escorted back to the jockey’s room.

Castellano then spoke with the stewards by phone about the incident at the three-eighths pole before hanging up the phone and talking about the race with Michelle Nihei, the trainer of Prince Will I Am.

"He came straight to me, he was very aggressive, and tried to hit me in the face," Castellano said. "I had to push him away, he cursed right in my face and he went aggressive, and he said I want to kill you and all that kind of stuff."

Castellano said didn’t know why Borel was so upset.

"Horses started backing up at the three-eighths pole, my horse he tried to run because he’s so relaxed, he find a little hole, a spot, I squeeze him and go forward," Castellano said. "The pressure from outside is coming up and I took the spot and go from there. I put away the other horses that were tired and I moved forward."

John Veitch, the Kentucky chief state steward, said the stewards will review not only the race films but the ESPN tape of the altercation before handing out any penalties.

"We will review the tape of ESPN on the confrontation at the scales and make a decision on who was the aggressor and what actions should be taken," Veitch said. "We’ll take everything into consideration. What the penalty is we can’t discuss it until we see it. We didn’t see any of it, I did catch a glimpse of it on ESPN, not enough. We need to interview everybody, give everybody a fair hearing and then make a decision on what the penalty should be."