Not Real News

Jockey John Velazquez sprays champagne after winning the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby on Medina Spirit at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky. On Friday, The Associated Press reported on stories circulating online incorrectly claiming Velazquez turned down a White House invite.

CLAIM: Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit’s jockey John Velazquez turned down a White House invite, saying that if he wanted to see a horse’s behind he would have come in second place.

THE FACTS: After the dark brown colt Medina Spirit and jockey John Velazquez won the Kentucky Derby by a half-length, a fake quote attributed to Velazquez began circulating on social media.

“BREAKING NEWS,” one Facebook user wrote in a post shared more than 6,000 times. “Derby winner Medina Spirit’s jockey John Velazquez turned down a White House invite today saying ‘If I wanted to see a horse’s ass I would of came in second.’”

Ron Anderson, Velazquez’s agent, confirmed to The Associated Press that the post is inaccurate. The jockey has not been invited to the White House, Anderson confirmed.

“This is ridiculous,” Anderson told the AP in a phone call. “In a million, zillion years, Johnny would not say that about anything or anyone.”

An internet search revealed no legitimate sources for the quote, which has circulated for years surrounding the Kentucky Derby in reference to different jockeys and horses, even at times by the same Twitter users in different years.

In 2018, Reddit users joked that the quote came from the winning horse, Justify.