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U2’s Longtime Tour Manager Dies in L.A. Hotel Room


Dennis Sheehan, U2’s tour manager for more than 30 years, was found dead Wednesday morning in his hotel room of a massive heart attack, officials confirm.

The Los Angeles County Fire Department were called to the Marquis Hotel in West Hollywood at 5:30 a.m. on Wednesday for a reported cardiac arrest. Sheehan was pronounced dead at the scene.

“We’ve lost a family member, we’re still taking it in. He wasn’t just a legend in the music business, he was a legend in our band. He is irreplaceable,” U2 frontman Bono said in a statement.

“With profound sadness we confirm that Dennis Sheehan, U2’s longstanding tour manager and dear friend to us all, has passed away overnight. Our heartfelt sympathy is with his wonderful family,” added Arthur Fogel, CEO of Global Touring and Chairman of Global Music at Live Nation.

U2 had kicked off their five-date stint in Los Angeles just hours before at the Forum in Inglewood.

Sheehan, in his 60s, had worked with the Irish rockers since 1982.

In 2008, he was awarded the Parnelli Lifetime Achievement Award — which are considered to be the “Oscars of the Live Event Industry.”

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Blues Legend B.B. King Dies at 89

Photo by OwenSweeney/AP 

The Mississippi-born guitarist, who had suffered from Type II diabetes for two decades, died peacefully in his sleep at 9:40 p.m. PDT Thursday at his home in Las Vegas, his attorney Brent Bryson told the AP. In October, King fell ill during a show, and after being diagnosed with dehydration and exhaustion, canceled his concert tour and never returned to touring.

With his trusty Gibson guitar Lucille, King developed his audiences in stages, connecting with African-Americans region by region in the 1950s and '60s, breaking through to the American mainstream in the '70s and becoming a global ambassador for the blues soon thereafter, becoming the first blues musician to play the Soviet Union.

King, whose best-known song was "The Thrill is Gone," developed a commercial style of the blues guitar-playing long on vibrato and short, stinging guitar runs while singing almost exclusively about romance. Unlike the musicians who influenced him, Blind Lemon Jefferson and T-Bone Walker, for example, or his contemporaries Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker and Howlin Wolf, whose music bore geographic identities, King's music was not tethered to the style heard on the Mississippi plantation or the Beale Street sound in Memphis, where he first established his career.

He took rural 12-bar blues and welded it to big-city, horn-driven ensembles populated with musicians who understood swing and jazz but played music that worked a groove and allowed King's honey-sweet vocals and passionate guitar licks to stand out. His solos often started with a four- or five-note statement before sliding into a soothing, jazzy phrase; it's the combination of tension and release that King learned from gospel singers and the jazz saxophonists Lester Young and Johnny Hodges.

"The first rock 'n' roll I ever knew about was Fats Domino and Little Richard because they were playing blues, but differently," King said in the liner notes to MCA's 1992 box set King of the Blues. "And I started to do what I do now — incorporating. You can't just stay in the same groove all the time. … I tried to edge a little closer to Fats and all of them, but not to go completely."

The universal appeal of King's guitar sound, admired by the likes of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Michael Bloomfield and Eric Clapton, and his welcoming performance style opened doors for him globally as he was one of the most consistent touring acts of the past 50 years. For more than a half-century, King averaged 275 shows per year; in 1956 alone, he played 342 one-nighters.

"I found that each time I went to a place I would get more fans," King says in the book The B.B. King Treasures. "I started to get letters, and in that area people would buy records. People thought I was making a lot of money because I was traveling a lot. That was the only way I could survive."

King had a 40-year stretch on the Billboard 200 with 33 titles charting. His 2000 album with Clapton, Riding With the King, hit No. 3, King’s chart peak. On his own, King hit the top 40 twice: 1970’s Indianola Mississippi Seeds, which followed the album that included “The Thrill Is Gone,”  
Completely Well, hit No. 26, and Live In Cook County Jail reached No. 25 a year later.

Live in Cook County Jail was the biggest of 25 albums that landed on the Top R&B Albums chart, hitting No. 1 for three weeks during its 31-week run. Nine of King’s albums hit No. 1 on the Blues Albums chart; the last was Live at the Royal Albert Hall 2011 in 2012.

King landed 35 songs on the Hot 100 between 1957, when “Be Careful With a Fool” peaked at No. 95, and “When Love Comes to Town,” a duet with U2, reached No. 68. King’s chart peak was “The Thrill Is Gone,” his 1969 single that hit No. 15. King only had two other top 40 hits.

King won 15 Grammy Awards, received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1987 and was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1980 and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

Nearly as famous as the man was the man’s guitar.

In the winter of 1949, while King was performing in a club in Twist, Ark., a pail filled with kerosene, lighted to keep the place warm, was knocked over during a brawl between two men over a woman, and the place went up in flames.

“When I got on the outside, I realized then that I had left my guitar [a Gibson L-30 with a DeArmond pickup] on the inside. So I went back for it,” he told Jazzweekly.com. “The building was wooden and burning rapidly. It started to collapse around me, and I almost lost my life trying to save my guitar.

“So the next morning, we found out that these two guys who were fighting were fighting about a lady that worked in the little dance hall. We learned that her name was Lucille. So I named the guitar Lucille to remind me to never do a thing like that again.” (King partnered with Gibson in 1982 to create a guitar the B.B. King Lucille.)

Born Riley King on Sept. 16, 1925, in the Mississippi Delta near Itta Bena, he was raised on a cotton farm by his maternal grandmother, Elnora. His mother died he was 9, his grandmother when he was 14. He picked cotton on a plantation in Indianola, Miss., and his first recording, made in 1940, was the “Sharecropper Record” in 1940.

King learned the guitar by studying Jefferson, Walker, Lonnie Johnson and his cousin, Booker “Bukka” White, who taught him the finer points of playing.

“I guess the earliest sound of blues that I can remember was in the fields while people would be pickin’ cotton or choppin’ or something,’ ” King recalled in a 1988 interview with Living Blues
“When I play and sing now, I can hear those same sounds that I used to hear then.”

He believed gospel singing was a path to success and in 1943 joined the Famous St. John Gospel Singers, which was featured  on WGRM, a gospel radio station. He sang in church on Sundays, then changed hats in the evenings to play for tips on the street corners of Indianola.

That same year he joined the Army, but his stay lasted less than three months. He spent his service days driving a tractor on a Delta plantation and his weekends at Indianola music spots soaking up the likes of Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Robert Nighthawk. At that time, he decided he would attempt to play blues rather than gospel.

After the war, King moved in with White in Memphis and caught his first break in 1948 performing on Sonny Boy Williamson’s radio program on KWEM in West Memphis, Tenn. It led to engagements at the Sixteenth Avenue Grill and later a 10-minute spot on black-staffed and managed Memphis radio station WDIA. He was billed as Riley King, the Blues Boy from Beale Street, later shortened to the Blues Boy and then just B.B.

King’s first record deal was with the small Nashville label Bullet Records, his first single being “Miss Martha King,” written for his first wife. That led to a deal in 1949 with the Bihari Brothers, whose labels included RPM, Modern and Kent, and quickly found success. His first hit, “3 O’Clock Blues,” was recorded at the Memphis YMCA in 1951 with Ike Turner on piano.

It spent 17 weeks on the Top R&B Singles chart, five of them at No. 1, leading to King signing with Universal Attractions and getting booked nationally at theaters that catered to African-American audiences, among them: New York’s Apollo Theatre and Washington, D.C.’s Howard Theater.

Like many blues artists of the period, King did not receive his fair share of profits as writing credits on some of his songs listed him alongside Joe Josea, Jules Taub and Sam Ling.

“Some of the songs I wrote, they added a name when I copyrighted it," King told Blues Access magazine. "There was no such thing as Ling or Josea. No such thing. That way, the company could claim half of your song.”

(Ray Charles) 
photo by Ray Tharaldson

In the early 1960s, King signed with ABC-Paramount, then home to Ray Charles, and his records took on a more sophisticated tone mostly due to him working with arrangers for the first time. His 1965 concert album Live at the Regal, recorded in Chicago, became a hallmark concert LP.

In February 1967, King was booked on a bill at the Fillmore Auditorium in san Francisco with Moby Grape and the Steve Miller Band, a booking King thought was a mistake after he arrived, having never played to an all-white audience. Miller and promoter Bill Graham were big fans who wanted him on the bill.

"We were all just thrilled to the core," Miller said in B.B. King Treasures. "It was a very emotional night. He had tears in his eyes because the audience, as soon as B.B. came out on stage, just stood up and gave him a standing ovation."

U-Va. dean sues Rolling Stone for ‘false’ portrayal in retracted rape story

A University of Virginia associate dean of students filed a multimillion-dollar defamation lawsuit against Rolling Stone magazine Tuesday, alleging that it portrayed her as callous and indifferent to allegations of sexual assault on campus and made her the university’s “chief villain” in a now-debunked article about a fraternity gang rape.

Nicole Eramo is seeking more than $7.5 million in damages from Rolling Stone; its parent company, Wenner Media; and Sabrina Rubin Erdely, the investigative journalist who wrote the explosive account of sexual assault on the campus in Charlottesville. The magazine retracted the article after news organizations and the Columbia University journalism school found serious flaws in it.
Eramo, who is the university’s chief administrator dealing with sexual assaults, argues in the lawsuit that the article destroyed her credibility, permanently damaged her reputation and caused her emotional distress. She assailed the account as containing numerous falsehoods that the magazine could have avoided if it had worked to verify the story of its main subject, a student named Jackie who alleged she was gang-raped in 2012 and that the university mishandled her case.

“Rolling Stone and Erdely’s highly defamatory and false statements about Dean Eramo were not the result of an innocent mistake,” according to the lawsuit, which was filed in Charlottesville Circuit Court. “They were the result of a wanton journalist who was more concerned with writing an article that fulfilled her preconceived narrative about the victimization of women on American college campuses, and a malicious publisher who was more concerned about selling magazines to boost the economic bottom line for its faltering magazine, than they were about discovering the truth or actual facts.”
The complaint focuses on a 9,000-word exposé called “A Rape on Campus,” which caused a sensation when it was published online in November. The article began with a vividly detailed narrative of a brutal sexual assault at the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house in September 2012. Jackie, identified by only her first name, said that as a freshman she was ambushed at a party, with seven men taking turns raping her while two others watched.

Following reports in The Washington Post in December highlighting inconsistencies in Rolling Stone’s account of Jackie’s alleged assault, the Charlottesville Police Department later concluded that the allegations could not be substantiated. The police also noted that Eramo swiftly moved to help Jackie and arranged for her to meet with detectives about her alleged sexual assault almost immediately after the dean learned of the allegations. Police Chief Timothy J. Longo has said that Jackie refused to cooperate with his department’s investigators on multiple occasions.
In early April, Columbia University’s journalism school published an independent review of the magazine’s reporting and found that the article was “deeply flawed.” The next day, Phi Kappa Psi announced plans to file a lawsuit against Rolling Stone, but the fraternity has not yet done so.

Rolling Stone and Erdely declined to comment about the lawsuit Tuesday, and a lawyer for Jackie also declined to comment.

The University of Virginia released a statement supporting Eramo, saying that the school “fully supports and appreciates the professional competency and contributions of Dean Eramo and all of her colleagues who work tirelessly in the support of our students and their safety and wellbeing.”

According to Eramo’s lawsuit, filed by the Clare Locke law firm in Alexandria, the magazine alleged that Eramo acted disdainfully to Jackie’s claims, “did nothing in response” and sought to suppress “Jackie’s alleged gang rape to protect UVA’s reputation.”

“Erdely and Rolling Stone’s epic failure of journalism was the result of biased, agenda-driven reporting,” the lawsuit says. The suit claims that the magazine’s account represented “a purposeful avoidance of the truth, and an utter failure to investigate the accuracy of Jackie’s claims.”

The magazine also printed a photo illustration of Eramo that she argues is inflammatory; the lawsuit says that the magazine turned a mundane Cavalier Daily student newspaper photo of her addressing a classroom and turned it into a wild-eyed image of her sitting in an office and giving a thumbs-up in front of a distraught sexual assault victim as protesters hold signs outside. The lawsuit claims the doctored image “demonstrates the lengths Erdely and Rolling Stone were willing to go to portray Dean Eramo as a villain.”

The complaint details that after the article’s publication, Eramo received hundreds of spiteful e-mails from alumni and others who judged her based on her portrayal in Rolling Stone. In addition to containing rape and death threats, the messages described Eramo as a “wretched rape apologist” and “a disgusting, worthless piece of trash” who should “burn in hell forever.”

As the article gained international attention, Eramo lost sleep, had difficulty eating, experienced emotional distress and sought counseling, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit also alleges that Eramo, emotionally and physically drained, suffered surgical complications during an operation to treat a recurring case of breast cancer, leading her to spend additional days in the hospital.

The complaint argues that Eramo made considerable efforts to help Jackie, who first spoke to U-Va. officials about her alleged assault after she was summoned to a meeting about her having failed three classes.

The suit says that Eramo helped Jackie meet with police, introduced her to sexual assault support groups on campus and encouraged the student to persuade other alleged Phi Kappa Psi rape victims to come forward so that U-Va. “could take action against the fraternity if the allegations were well founded.”

The complaint portrays Eramo as a beloved figure on campus among ­sexual-assault-prevention activists and rape survivors. A crowd-funding Web site aiming to raise $500,000 to help Eramo pay her legal fees against Rolling Stone has collected more than $20,000 in donations from administrators, students and alumni in its first days.

Eramo joined the U-Va. faculty shortly after her graduation from the public flagship in 1997, and she proceeded to receive a master’s degree and doctorate in education at the university. She has spent much of her time on campus dedicated to causes related to sexual assault.

Since 2006, Eramo has overseen the university’s sexual-misconduct board, which adjudicates allegations of rape on campus.

The lawsuit further claims that Eramo is misquoted in Rolling Stone and that she also never told Jackie that the administration does not publicize sexual-assault statistics “because nobody wants to send their daughter to the rape school,” as the Rolling Stone account reported.

Eramo’s lawyers claim that Jackie had informed Rolling Stone prior to the article’s publication that Eramo’s quotes were false and that the student “never told Erdely that Dean Eramo made these statements.”

The complaint notes that Jackie told the magazine that she disagreed with its depiction of Eramo. After the Rolling Stone article was published, Jackie joined other sexual assault prevention advocates and survivors in a letter of support for Eramo. Jackie wrote that Eramo counseled her with compassion at a time when the student was severely depressed.

“Dean Eramo has truly saved my life,” Jackie wrote. “She listened attentively to my story and provided me with several resources. . . . I can’t imagine what my life would be like now if it were not for Nicole Eramo.”

Tom Brady discipline: 'everything is being considered'

Two notable topics dominate the NFL landscape now and both affect the Miami Dolphins to varying degrees.

The small tidbit of news I can offer is that the NFL is weighing a suspension of New England quarterback Tom Brady that could span up to one season. "Everything is being studied, everything is being considered," an NFL source with knowledge of the disciplinary procedure told me Wednesday night.

The source said it would be wrong to think a season-long suspension will absolutely be the punishment doled out because that decision had not been finalized at the time of our conversation. 

But he also said it would be wrong to dismiss such an extended and seemingly improbable length of time as the ceiling for discipline.

The source declined to give a discipline floor, or the most lenient discipline Brady is facing. 

Interestingly, the source did not mention possible discipline for New England coach Bill Belichick or owner Robert Kraft.

It is clear the NFL is expecting to hand down some sort of discipline on #deflategate following the unveiling of the Ted Wells report at 1 p.m. Wednesday.

The process is in the hands of NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent and others.

(Yes, the Troy Vincent who was drafted by the Miami Dolphins, and also played for the Buffalo Bills, Washington Redskins, and Philadelphia Eagles).

ESPN has reported the NFL would respond to this Wells Report (there was another, you may recall) within days, not weeks.

That time frame is correct. 

Obviously, if Brady misses the entire season, the AFC East is up for grabs. Indeed, this has implications beyond the division.

The last time a team other than New England won the AFC East was 2008 when the Dolphins won the division in a year Brady was injured the first regular-season game and missed the rest of the year.

Even a lesser suspension for Brady could affect the division. New England's backup quarterback is second-year player Jimmy Garoppolo. Garoppolo has thrown 27 NFL regular-season passes.

Highlights: Floyd Mayweather Jr beats Manny Pacquiao to Win Fight of the Century

Boxing Mayweather

Manny Pacquiao beat Floyd Mayweather in 12 rounds to win Fight of the Century at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas. Catch highlights here: 

Reported by: Rajarshi Gupta

Years of debate and months of hype reached a climax Saturday when� Floyd Mayweather beat� Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas . Catch highlights here. (All Times IST)
10:22 AM: Mayweather beats Pacquiao by unanimous decision in 12 rounds to win the Fight of the Century.
10:12 AM: The final round of the Fight of the Century under way. This has been a very, very tense bout so far. Mayweather did well to come back with some counter-punches after being on the receiving end of the Filipino.
10:10 AM: Sense of urgency from Mayweather as the bout enters the championship rounds. The American has been aggressive once again in Rd 11, trying to snatch some initiative from Pacquiao
10:05 AM: Nine rounds done and the bout has taken a dramatic turn. Pacquiao has fought back brilliantly and put Money Mayweather under severe pressure in front of his fellow Americans.
9:56 AM: Round 7 over and Pacquiao continues to take the fight over to Mayweather, who had started the bout with plenty of confidence.
9:53 AM:� Pacquiao continues his fightback halfway into the fight of the century. Mayweather looks under pressure after Rd 6. He gets a talking to on the ringside.
9:44 AM: Pacquiao fights back with furious counter-punches against Mayweather in Rd 4.
Boxing Mayweather
Pacquiao fought back after a weak start against Mayweather


9:39 AM: Mayweather is looking increasingly dangerous as the fight progresses. But Pacquiao is beginning to fight back with some counter punches in Rd 4.
9:35 AM: Pacquiao under pressure after Rd 2. Mayweather lands some powerful punches and is looking strong here. Some tactical blunders from the Filipino, who looks a little rattled.
9:32 AM: Eventful Rd 1 Mayweather starts a conversation with Pacquiao before the referee separated
9:28 AM: Fight of the century under way after final instructions from the referee.
Mayweather walk MGM
Mayweather walks in for the fight of the century


9:18 AM: Manny Pacquiao, Filipino Congressman walks out for the richest sporting event of the planet. He raised himself from abject poverty to be counted as one of the wealthiest sporting stars in the world. His opponent, "Money" Mayweather is all bling and glitz.
9:14 AM: The national anthems are done. Jamie Fox led the anthem for the United States. Sensational atmosphere at the MGM. Finally, it's game time!
9:05 AM: It's a real celeb-fest!. Drew Barrymore, Paris Hilton, Magic Johnson are ringside. No one is sitting - they want to have a glance at the two men who matter today. Just moments away from the bout.
Paris Hilton MGM Grand Arena
Paris Hilton waits for the bout to begin at the MGM Grand Arena


8:54 AM: There is a bit of a delay to the start of the bout. The demand for pay-per-view has shot up dramatically in the run up to fight time. Meanwhile, Drew Barrymore is ringside as is NBA great Magic Johnson.
8:45 AM: Huge cheer around the arena as Mayweather gets ready for fight night. The American is unbeaten in his 47 fights. His opponent, Pacquiao is also a global icon.
8:42 AM: A-listers and high-rollers have made up the vast majority of a 16,800 sell-out crowd, making the fight more akin to a night out at the Oscars than two men attempting to pound the other to the canvas.
8:39 AM: The big moment has arrived. Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather are ready to take the ring at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas. The full-capacity crowd is making a lot of noise.
8:34 AM: They continue to pour in. Rarely has such a star galaxy been seen at a sporting event. Michael Jordan, Evander Holyfield, Mark Wahlberg and Robert de Niro arrive for the bout.
8:25 AM: Right then, we are barely five minutes away from the most hyped boxing bout in the last 100 years. Pacquiao was seen shadow practicing backstage - the Filipino looks calm and collected. Mayweather of course is likely to have the majority of the crowd backing him at the MGM Grand.
8:22 AM: Moments away from the biggest and the most expensive sporting event of the planet. Millions of dollars at stake. The movie superstars, global sporting powerhouses and the world media are glued in ringside at the MGM Grand Arena.
 Denzel Washington (L) and director Antoine Fuqua
Denzel Washington (L) and director Antoine Fuqua pose ringside at the MGM Grand Arena


8:14 AM: Pacquiao, an icon in the Philippines, is a two-term congressman with a music and film career. He stands to win $ 100 million if he beats Mayweather in today's welterweight world title championship.
8:04 AM : Hollywood superstar Clint Eastwood arrives at MGM Grand Arena for the bout.
8:02 AM: MGM Grand has received $500,000 wager on Manny Pacquiao
MGM Grand Arena fans
Fans arrive for the bout. The cheapest tickets are worth nearly Rs 13 lakh


8:01 AM: Both boxers arrived for the most expensive sporting event in the planet to loud cheers from the thousands gathered at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. There were several movie superstars, who also lined up for the fight of the century.
7: 59: Breathtaking figures:
- Mayweather might make $200 million today. Pacquiao can take $100 million
- Total revenue for the bout could reach $400 million
- Something between $60 million and $80 million worth of bets will be placed on the bout in Nevada
Story first published on: Sunday, 03 May 2015 06:49 IST



American Pharoah gives trainer a long-awaited 4th Derby win

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- Three times in seven years, Bob Baffert left the Kentucky Derby empty-handed. Two seconds and a sixth-place finish by the wagering favorite.

After a while, those close calls started taking a toll. Even for a three-time Derby winner.

"When you get beat like that, all these seconds, you get to a point in your life, maybe it's not just going to happen for me," said Baffert, 62, who suffered a heart attack in Dubai three years ago. 

"And then they sent me this horse. And I thought, `Wow, here's my chance. Don't mess it up, Bob.'"

On this first Saturday in May, Baffert knew he had the best horse in American Pharoah. Still, he needed a dynamic performance and some old-fashioned racing luck.

He got it all - and then some - with a horse that even rival trainers suspect could be a threat to win racing's first Triple Crown in 37 years.

Sent off as the 5-2 favorite by the record crowd of 170,513, American Pharoah rallied in the stretch to beat Firing Line by a length and deliver Baffert's first Derby since 2002.

"There's a certain aura about him, and he has caught everybody's attention," said a joyous Baffert, surrounded by three older sons from a first marriage and his youngest, 10-year-old Bode, who jumped up and down and waved his arms in celebration.

Owner Ahmed Zayat grabbed the gold winner's trophy - his first after a trio of second-place finishes in the $2.1 million race.

"Finally, no more seconds," he said, laughing.

Baffert trained two of Zayat's runners-up: Pioneerof the Nile in 2009, the sire of American Pharoah; and Bodemeister, named for Baffert's son, three years ago.

"This is for the Zayats, who have suffered so much running these seconds," Baffert said. "We know what it is to just get punched right in the face."

Baffert also saddled third-place Dortmund, the other part of his lethal 1-2 punch in the 141st Derby. Firing Line finished second.

"We were ready to rumble," said Baffert, who went 1-3 in 1998, when Real Quiet won and Indian Charlie was third. "I just love what I saw today from both of my boys."

Dortmund set a leisurely pace with Firing Line tracking him closely in second. American Pharoah sat comfortably in third down the backstretch.

That trio made it a three-horse race in the stretch, with none of the closers able to make up ground. American Pharoah angled outside and fought off a persistent Firing Line as Dortmund tired along the rail, his six-race winning streak about to end.

"Coming for home I thought I might get there, but it wasn't to be," said Gary Stevens, who rode Firing Line.

Now, the moment of truth. Could American Pharoah justify Baffert's belief that he was an exceptional colt?

"I was on pins and needles all week," the white-haired trainer said. "I know I was coming in here with the best horse."

American Pharoah proved him right.

Still, it was a long road to the winner's circle for the colt with the unusually short tail - having had it chewed off by another horse on the farm - and the misspelled moniker courtesy of a fan contest.

American Pharoah missed his first big test last year when he was scratched from the Breeders' Cup with an injury. He returned with two easy wins this year against lesser competition. Dortmund and several other Derby contenders had beaten much tougher fields, raising questions about whether American Pharoah could mix it up in a 20-horse field.

Victor Espinoza won his second consecutive Derby a year after being aboard California Chrome, and third overall. He and Baffert teamed to win with War Emblem 18 years ago.

"He's been a special horse since I first rode him," Espinoza said. "I feel like the luckiest Mexican on Earth."

American Pharoah ran 1 1/4 miles in 2:03.02.

Baffert tied D. Wayne Lukas and Herbert "Derby Dick" Thompson for second on the career win list.
American Pharoah paid $7.80, $5.80, $4.20.

Firing Line returned $8.40 and $5.40 at 10-1 odds, while Dortmund was another two lengths back in third and paid $4.20 to show.

Zayat took a pre-Derby blow Friday, when one of his other horses, El Kabeir, was scratched because of a sore foot. Mr. Z, his third entry, finished 13th.

Trainer Todd Pletcher's trio of Materiality, Itsaknockout and Carpe Diem finished sixth, ninth and 10th.

Frosted was fourth, followed by Danzig Moon, Materiality, Keen Ice and Mubtaahij. Itsaknockout was ninth on the same day Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao fought in Las Vegas.

Carpe Diem was 10th, followed by Frammento, Bolo, Mr. Z, Ocho Ocho Ocho, Far Right, War Story, Tencendur and Upstart.

Kate Middleton emerges from hospital 10 hours after giving birth to 8lb 3oz baby girl!

By Rebecca English and Jennifer Smith and Stephanie Linning and Gemma Mullin for MailOnline
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have taken their new baby daughter home just 12 hours after arriving at hospital and ten hours after giving birth.

The couple emerged on the steps outside the Lindo Wing at St Mary's Hospital shortly after 6pm and the world was given a brief glimpse of the new princess, who was wrapped in a white blanket.

The newest royal, whose name is yet to be announced, was born at 8.34am today weighing 8lbs and 3oz - less than three hours after the Duchess was admitted to hospital.

Prince George was taken to the Lindo Wing to meet his newborn sister, offering a timid wave to the gathered crowds from the hospital steps, at around 4pm this afternoon.

The 21-month-old was driven from the family home at Kensington Palace to St Mary's Hospital by his father, Prince William, and stayed for about an hour before he was taken back home for his bath and tea with his nanny.

Both mother and her newborn daughter were said to have been 'doing well' when the news came shortly after 11am today. The baby, whose name is not yet known, will be known as Her Royal Highness Princess of Cambridge.

After being lifted out of the car and put on the ground to walk, George stretched out his arms to be lifted back up by his father before offering a timid wave to the gathered media and fans.

Cheers erupted for the young prince, who has not made a public appearance in the UK since his own birth in 2013, as he made his way towards the Lindo Wing in his father's arms.

After walking a few steps holding his father's hand, the one-year-old stretched out his arms to be picked back up by his father before being encouraged to wave to the gathered crowds.

Beaming with pride, William was seen mouthing 'good boy' in his son's ear before giving him a tender kiss on the head. The pair then disappeared behind the hospital doors to reunite with Kate and the new princess in a scene reminiscent of Prince Harry's birth in 1984.

Prince Charles held a toddling William's hand as they walked up the Lindo Wing steps where Diana gave birth.
The announcement came by way of a statement released by Kensington Palace shortly after 11am. It was then posted on the palace's official Twitter page two minutes later.

'Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge was safely delivered of a daughter at 8.34am,' it said. 

'The baby weighs 8lbs 3oz. 'The Duke of Cambridge was present for the birth. 

'The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Harry and members of both families have been informed and are delighted with the news. 

'Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well.'

At around 12.30 a framed certificate signed by Kate's medical team was placed on an easel outside Buckingham Palace with the same words. 

The baby's name is not yet known but Alice and Charlotte are the most popular among bookmakers. 
Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall released a statement this afternoon saying they were 'absolutely delighted' with the arrival of their granddaughter while the Earl of Spencer, Prince William's uncle, said: 'It's wonderful news - we are all thrilled for all four of them.'

The Prime Minister was among the first to congratulate the couple this morning writing on Twitter: 

'Congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on the birth of their baby girl. 

'I'm absolutely delighted for them.' 

He was followed by Nick Clegg who said: 'Congratulations to the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge on the birth of their new baby. Miriam & I wish them all the best as their family grows.'

Character counts in first round as several NFL draft prospects plummet

In a Sept. 6, 2014, file photo then-Nebraska defensive end Randy Gregory wears street clothes before an NCAA college football game against McNeese State in Lincoln, Neb. Randy Gregory says he's tested positive for marijuana at the NFL scouting combine last month and that he failed two drug tests at Nebraska last year. Gregory disclosed his marijuana use in an interview with NFL Media on March 25, 2015. Gregory went into February's scouting combine projected to be among the top 10 picks but he was not taken on the first night of the draft. (Nati Harnik / Associated Press)

Pharoah tipped to reign at Kentucky Derby

Mexican jockey Espinoza is bidding to steer the horse to victory 12 months after guiding California Chrome to a memorable win in the one and one quarter mile gallop, the opening leg of racing's Triple Crown.

Espinoza believes he has been given a stellar ride as he aims to join the select band of jockeys to win the Kentucky Derby three times.

"I have had all the confidence in him since the first time I rode him at Del Mar," Espinoza said of American Pharoah, referring to the horse's emphatic win in last September's Del Mar Futurity Group 1 race in California.

Dortmund is bathed after a morning workout for the …"The way he won that day, I just said 'Wow, he's an amazing horse.'"

Recent results have underscored American Pharoah's status as the horse to beat, with a victory in the Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park in March followed by an impressive eight-length win in the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn in early April.

Ominously for his Kentucky Derby rivals, Espinoza believes American Pharoah's full potential may yet to be realised.

"I really don't know how good he is," said Espinoza, who is undefeated on the horse after four rides.

"I ride him, but the way he does things so easy, I really don't know how good he is. He's an amazing horse. But so far, I never ride him really hard," added Espinoza, who is unfazed by a post position of 18 in the 20-horse field.

The biggest challenge to American Pharoah's chances could come from another Baffert-trained horse, the 3-1 shot Dortmund who will be ridden by Martin Garcia out of the number eight gate.

Dortmund also arrives in Kentucky brimming with confidence following a four-and-a-half length win in the Santa Anita Derby in California in April.

The horse, owned by Kaleem Shah, has recorded a 100 percent record in six career races so far and could well make it seven on Saturday.

"It takes a horse with a certain demeanor, and speed and class to be undefeated, 6-for-6 so far," Shah said.

"I don't want to get ahead of myself, but I'm very hopeful that he will do well for himself."

The 8-1 third pick is Carpe Diem, one of three horses in the Derby trained by Todd Pletcher, which will be ridden by John Velazquez from post two.

Another Pletcher-trained horse, the 12-1 shot Materiality, could also upset the odds.

Elsewhere, legendary jockey Gary Stevens will be the oldest to saddle up when he rides on Firing Line, who starts at 12-1.

The 52-year-old, a three-time Kentucky Derby winner, is impressed with what he has seen from Firing Line so far.

"If you want to picture a race horse, that is what one is supposed to look like," Stevens said this week.

"He's got great stamina, he's got great speed, and he's got a great mind."

The Triple Crown is completed by the Preakness at Pimlico on May 16 and the Belmont Stakes on June 6.

Only 11 horses in history have landed all three races in the same season, with the last to win it being Affirmed in 1978.