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The Kentucky Derby - Get To Know All Of The Details

Added: (Tue Feb 21 2012)

Pressbox (Press Release) - Kentuckyderby.net is the number one sports book for your Kentucky Derby needs. We provide the latest news and information about this extraordinary American sports event. The Kentucky Derby is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbred horses, held annually in Louisville, Kentucky, United States, on the first Saturday in May, capping the two-week-long Kentucky Derby Festival. The race is one and a quarter mile (2 km) at Churchill Downs.

The race is known in the United States as "The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports" or "The Fastest Two Minutes in Sports" for its approximate duration, and is also called "The Run for the Roses" for the blanket of roses draped over the winner. It is the first leg of the US Triple Crown and is followed by the Preakness Stakes, then the Belmont Stakes. The horse must win all three races to win the Triple Crown. The attendance at the Kentucky Derby ranks first in North America and usually surpasses the attendance of all other stakes races including the Preakness Stakes, Belmont Stakes and the Breeders' Cup.

One interesting fact about this sport is that between 1875 and 1902, African-American jockeys won 15 of the 28 runnings of the Kentucky Derby. On May 11, 1892, African-American jockey, Alonzo "Lonnie" Clayton, at age 15 became the youngest rider to ever win the Kentucky Derby. Another interesting fact is that the 1904 race was won by Elwood, the first Derby starter and winner owned by a woman, Laska Durnell. In 1915, Regret became the first filly to win the Kentucky Derby (of only three in the history of the race), and in 1917, the English bred colt "Omar Khayyam" became the first foreign-bred horse to win the race.

In addition to the race itself, a number of traditions play a large role in the Derby atmosphere. The Mint Julep, an iced drink consisting of bourbon, mint and sugar syrup is the traditional beverage of the race. The historic drink can be served in an ice-frosted silver julep cup. Also, burgoo, a thick stew of beef, chicken, pork and vegetables, is a popular Kentucky dish served at the Derby.

The Derby is frequently referred to as "The Run for the Roses," because a lush blanket of 554 red roses is awarded to the Kentucky Derby winner each year. The tradition originated in 1883 when New York socialite E. Berry Wall presented roses to ladies at a post-Derby party that was attended by Churchill Downs founder and president, Col. M. Lewis Clark. This gesture is believed to have eventually led Clark to the idea of making the rose the race's official flower. However, it was not until 1896 that any recorded account referred to roses being draped on the Derby winner. The Governor of Kentucky awards the garland and the trophy. Pop vocalist Dan Fogelberg composed the song "Run for the Roses" which was released in time for the 1982 running of the race. Visitors to kentuckyderby.net will discover many other fascinating and exciting things about this race.

Read Kentucky Derby info online at kentuckyderby.net. Find interesting facts about the history and past winners of this event as well as present facts and betting options for participating in the game.

Submitted by:Mike Belford
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