May is that time of the year when we'll begin the quest for horse racing's Holy Grail, so to speak, the Triple Crown. Yep, the first race of three battles is the 2018 Kentucky Derby and you just know that we'll be rooting for whoever wins the first all the way to that one becoming the Triple Crown champion. The Kentucky Derby is almost here and the Triple Crown Horse racing action will be on its way. The Kentucky Derby - Churchill Downs at the Louisville track on, May 4th & 5th, 2018.
There's nothing quite like the Kentucky Derby. It's much more than a Thoroughbred race. It's an American tradition that dates back to the 1800's. Fancy hats, roses, mint juleps everything is being prepare for the most important horse race of the year!
The Kentucky Derby is the first of three races that lead into the all so well known triple crown. The Triple Crown immortality is horse racing's greatest honor. Countless horses have tried and only 11 have succeeded.
In 1919, Sir Barton was the first horse to claim the Triple Crown, capturing the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes in the same year. Gallant Fox (1930), Omaha (1935), War Admiral (1937), Whirlaway (1941), Count Fleet (1943), Assault (1946), Citation (1948), Secretariat (1973), Seattle Slew (1977) and Affirmed (1978) have followed in infamy.
In order to win a Triple Crown, a horse must win three long races in five weeks, at three different tracks, in three different states. Triple Crown hopefuls must first win the Kentucky Derby, where Aristedes grabbed the inaugural "Run for the Roses" in 1875. Barring injury, the Derby winner is shipped to the second jewel of the Triple Crown, the Preakness Stakes. Survivor was the first Preakness winner in 1873. A Derby-Preakness champ then has a shot at Triple Crown immortality at the Belmont Stakes. The first Belmont winner was Ruthless in 1867.
There have been 17 horses that have won the first two jewels of the Triple Crown and failed to win at the Belmont. Two of them, Burgoo King in 1932 and Bold Venture in 1936, didn't run in New York.
Each of the past three years, horses have traveled to Belmont with Triple Crown hopes. Silver Charm and Real Quiet finished second in 1997 and 1998, respectively, while Charismatic placed third last year.
Kentucky Derby horse race betting, on-track and national, has increased from $26,805,205 in 1985 to $88,941,006 in 1998. Churchill Downs has become a leader in simulcast betting as both a host site and receiver. As a receiver, the $15 million Sports Spectrum, a state-of-the-art wagering center located seven miles from the track and constructed in 1992, has proved a national leader. The success in these areas has helped fuel Churchill Downs horsemen's purses, which have risen from a daily average of $187,363 during the 1990 Spring Meet to a record $469,643 during the 1999 season. Fall Meet purses have also grown to a daily average of $378,058.
A key to the future success of Churchill Downs Incorporated rests upon the Company's potential for development and expansion. Headed by its most aggressive development effort since the days of the American Turf Association in the 1920s-1930s, the Churchill Downs Management Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Churchill Downs Incorporated, opened Hoosier Park at Anderson in September 1994.
The dual Standardbred and Thoroughbred track, located in Anderson, Ind., approximately 40 miles northeast of Indianapolis, serves as Indiana's first pari-mutuel racetrack and Churchill's first out-of-state racing site since 1937. Under the Hoosier Park license, the Company also operates off-track betting facilities in Merrillville, Fort Wayne and Indianapolis, Ind.
In December 1997, Churchill Downs Incorporated formed the wholly owned subsidiary Churchill Downs Investment Company (CDIC), which linkssees the Company's industry-related investments. In recent years, the Company has continued its aggressive growth cycle. In April 1998, the Company finalized the purchase of Ellis Park in Henderson, Ky., and Kentucky Horse Center in Lexington, Ky., for $22 million. In January 1999, the Company purchased a majority interest in Charlson Broadcast Technologies, LLC. The venture was developed as a means to provide simulcast graphic software and video services to racetracks and off-track betting facilities.
In April 1999, the Company completed a $86 million purchase of Calder Race Course in Miami. The acquisition of Hollywood Park followed in September 1999. In 2000, Churchill Downs Incorporated completed the acquisition of Arlington International outside of Chicago, adding another entity to the Churchill Downs Incorporated network of racetracks.
Churchill Downs Incorporated's success has been achieved through a corporate strategy based on strengthening its racing program and the Kentucky Derby, increasing the track's share of the national simulcast market, and the geographic expansion of its racing operations. This commitment to quality racing has made the Company one of the premier racing centers in North America.
|Live Racing & Dawn at the Downs||First Race: 12:45pm|
|*Times subject to change.|
|May 3||Post Position Draw||5:30 PM - 6:00 PM||NBC SPORTS NETWORK|
|Kentucky Oaks 143||12:30 PM - 6:00 PM||NBC SPORTS NETWORK|
|Derby Undercard||12:00 PM - 4:00 PM||NBC SPORTS NETWORK|
|May 6||Kentucky Derby 143||4:00 PM - 7:30 PM||NBC|
|1||5||Always Dreaming||John R. Velazquez||Todd A. Pletcher||$1,635,800|
|2||1||Lookin At Lee||Corey Lanerie||Steven M. Asmussen||$400,000|
|3||11||Battle of Midway||Flavien Prat||Jerry Hollendorfer||$200,000|
|4||14||Classic Empire||Julien R. Leparoux||Mark E. Casse||$100,000|
|5||19||Practical Joke||Joel Rosario||Chad C. Brown||$60,000|
|2017||Always Dreaming||John R. Velazquez||Todd A. Pletcher|
|2016||Nyquist||Mario Gutierrez||Doug O'Neill|
|2015||American Pharoah||Victor Espinoza||Bob Baffert|
|2014||California Chrome||Victor Espinoza||Art Sherman|
|2013||Orb||Joel Rosario||Claude McGaughey III|
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