Kentucky Derby Trivia

The Kentucky Derby is a horse race, which is also famously known as the “Greatest two minutes in sports”it is also known as the “Run for the roses”. The Kentucky Derby race usually held on Saturdays in the month of May.  The call the race runs for the roses because the winning horse will be covered with beautiful red roses. In 1904 the red rose has become the Kentucky Derby horse race’s official flower.  The blanket contains 554 beautiful red roses and is rewarded along with the award by the Kentucky State Governor.

Meriwether Lewis Clark Jr., grandson of William Clark of Clark and Lewis expedition started the KD (Kentucky Derby). Junior committed suicide on 22nd April 1899, just 12 days before the KD. He took this drastic step as he lost money in the stock market in 1893.

In the first Kentucky Derby, out of 15 riders, 13 of them were African-American riders. Also, the African-American riders in first 28 runnings they won 15 trophies of the Derby. The ‘run for the roses’ tradition has been started by E. Berry Wall, a New York Socialite.  During the post-Derby party in 1883, he use to give roses to the ladies, and the party was attended by the president and the founder Churchill Downs, Col. M. Lewis Clark. This flower distribution gave the Clark an idea and he made it as a tradition and rose as the official flower of the KD horse race. But, there were no records found about the blanket of roses draped on the winner of the KD until 1896. For the winners, the Governor of Kentucky use to give the garlands, awards, and the trophy.

In 1913, Dnerail has become the biggest shot to win the KD, paying 184.90 dollars, 41.20 dollars, and 13.20 dollars. During war-time, the Street Car Derby faced travel restrictions and no tickets were sold out of the town. However, 65,000 people came to see Count Fleet in 1943, easily a 2 to 5 choice win.

The 70th Derby was banned by the Government, and they threatened all racing horses racing in January, to break the uninterrupted string. But, by May 8th the government lifted the ban and the 71st Derby was commenced on June 9, 1945.

*Government ban on all horse racing in January threatens to break the consecutive string of Derby’s at 70, but VE Day is followed by a May 8 announcement lifting the ban and the 71st Derby is run June 9, 1945. In May 3rd, 1952 the aired first national telecast of KD. In the year 1968, the first Derby winner was disqualified because of taking illegal medication before racing, and the Second place rider in the list was declared as the winner.

In the years 1973, secretariat breaks the record of two minute level for the Derby by winning the 99th Kentucky Derby the Run for the Roses in just 1minute 59 seconds and he was also the first Triple Crown winner in twenty-five years.  In the year 1974, Cannonade won the 100 the Derby and it was also an all-time record American Thoroughbred and the ground was jam packed with a crowd of 163,628.