The First Ever Kentucky Derby
At first, the Kentucky Derby was run at 1 1/12 miles, which is the same distance as the Epsom Derby. The distance changed in 1896 to its current 1 1/14 miles.
On May 17th, 1875, in front of an estimated crowd of around 10 thousand people, a field of 14 three-year-old horses contested the first Derby. A colt named Aristides, who was trained by future Hall of Famer Ansel Williamson, won the inaugural race that year.