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Shelby Energy consumer-member wins Derby

Brian Hernandez lives in Simpsonville

Congratulations to Kentucky Derby 150 winning jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr.  a consumer-member of Shelby Energy, who delivered one of the most spine-tingling finishes in Derby history. Aboard the 18-1 shot Mystik Dan, Hernandez rode the rail and gamely held off the late charges of Sierra Leone and Forever Young in a head-bobbing result.

Hernandez and trainer Kenny McPeek combined to win their first Derby, one day after teaming up to win their first Kentucky Oaks on Friday with Thorpedo Anna.

“It still hasn’t sunk in, it’s so unbelievable. We came into the weekend thinking that we had a really big chance at winning both Friday and Saturday. For the horses to pull it off for us, we have to thank the guys back in the barn. It’s definitely a surreal moment,” Hernandez said.

So close was the margin in the $5 million Derby that it took several minutes for the order of finish to be posted, capping a dream weekend at Churchill Downs for connections.

“The last 20 years I’ve ridden in Kentucky, and as a young kid out of Louisiana, I had the chance of sitting in the same corner as Calvin Borel. Watching him ride all those Derbys all those years, and today with Mystik Dan, being in the 3 hole,” Hernandez said. “I watched a couple of his rides, with Super Saver and Mine That Bird, and I decided that we were going to roll the dice. That’s the nice thing about Kenny (McPeek), he lets me make those decisions. We had the right kind of horse to give him that kind of trip.”

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