These Kentucky Derby Facts Prove It’s The Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports

Sports | 5/3/19

The Kentucky Derby is a horserace held annually in Louisville, Kentucky, on the first Saturday of May. The race is a Grade I stakes race that features three-year-old thoroughbred horses.

The race takes place at Churchill Downs and is often called “The Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports.” It’s the first leg of the American Triple Crown and is followed by the Preakness Stakes and then the Belmont Stakes. The Kentucky Derby is the biggest of them all, both is winnings and audience. It’s the Super Bowl of horse racing. But, why is it so special?

Where It All Began

Kentucky Derby Number Four racing number 7
Jerry Cooke/Corbis via Getty Images
Jerry Cooke/Corbis via Getty Images

In 1872, Meriwether Lewis Clark Jr. went to the Epson Derby in England. He loved the idea and realized that there was a gap in horse racing entertainment in the U.S. When he got back to the States, he started a racing club called the Louisville Jockey Club and raised enough money to build a permanent racetrack.

The track became known as Churchill Downs, named after John and Henry Churchill who provided the land for the racetrack.