Social media posts claim Sonny Leon, jockey for 148th Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike, rejected an invitation from the White House and insulted President Joe Biden. The claim is a recycled hoax; the jockey's agent said Leon never made those remarks and that he did not receive an invitation from the White House.
"BREAKING NEWS: 148th Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike jockey Sonny Leon just turned down a White House invite saying 'If I wanted to see a horse's ass I would have came in second,'" said a Facebook post published May 8, 2022 following the spectacular win by the long-shot horse.
Screenshot of a Facebook post taken May 13, 2022
But the Venezuela-born jockey never made those comments and did not receive a White House invitation, his agent told AFP.
"That's completely rubbish," Jeff Perrin said in a phone interview. "Sonny doesn't follow politics. And we never received any invitation" from the White House.
Leon was the jockey for Rich Strike, an 80-1 longshot and just the second horse to win the Kentucky Derby from the 20th post since the modern starting gate was introduced in 1930.
In post-race comments, Leon said he tried to keep the ride "nice and easy" and "waited for my moment and I came through on the stretch."