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Kentucky Derby Winner's Jockey Has Been Suspended

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - MAY 07: Jockey Sonny Leon reacts as Rich Strike wins the 148th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 07, 2022 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - MAY 07: Jockey Sonny Leon reacts as Rich Strike wins the 148th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 07, 2022 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Jockey Sonny Leon shocked the world by riding ultra-longshot Rich Strike to victory in the Kentucky Derby last weekend. But while the horse isn't facing the same problems that last year's first horse across the wire did, Leon has some trouble of his own to deal with.

According to USA Today, Leon is currently serving a four-day suspension for careless riding. The suspension began on Monday and will be over by Friday, after which he will return to racing.

The suspension has nothing to do with how he rode Rich Strike to victory at Churchill Downs. It stems from an incident at Thistledown on April 27, when Leon's filly, One Glamorous Gal, interfered with Ultra Rays in a race. Leon reportedly "deliberately and aggressively steered in towards the rail to block on-coming horses on the inside."

Ultra Rays' jockey Alexander Chavez pushed Leon with his hand during the race. Leon filed an objection afterwards. Both jockeys were ultimately disqualified from the race.

The suspension for Leon was initially eight days. But it was reduced to four after Leon declined to appeal.

This isn't the first time that Sonny Leon has gotten into trouble with the racing stewards though. He's reportedly been suspended five times since September alone. 

But if he's clear to race at Pimlico in nine days, there's little doubt he'll be on the mount for Rich Strike in the chase for the Triple Crown. 

Will Sonny Leon get to ride Rich Strike in the Preakness Stakes?