Tag Archives: Kentucky Derby

Five Major Horse Racing Events to Check Out in 2022

Horse racing is one of the most popular sports today, and we enjoy different events every year. Depending on your preference, you can always bet on these events at your favorite sports betting site or online casino with a sportsbook section. If you are a fan of horse racing, you will know how exciting these events can get.

As a result, you want to enjoy all the major and local horse racing events. Even if you are new or want to enjoy the sport casually, you can check out the top events available for the year. So, here are five incredible horse racing events for you to enjoy this year.

Saudi Cup

The Saudis have been pivoting to different sports in recent years, and one of their latest endeavors is the Saudi Cup for horse racing. It is tagged as the richest horse racing event because of its large prize pool. The winner takes $10 million from the $20 million prize pool.

This year is even more significant as they have raised it to $35 million, and the winner will take $15 million. As it stands, no events globally come in terms of prize pool and size. So, without any doubt, we will find most of the top athletes participating, making it one of the most competitive horse racing events of the year.

Cheltenham Festival

The Cheltenham festival is one of the most exciting and thrilling horse racing events every year. It is also one of the UK’s most prominent events. Every year thousands of spectators worldwide visit to witness the event live. We expect this year to be the same, and we might even see more expensive horse breeds compete.

The event is famous for its races that include multiple jumps, and speed is not the only thing that matters here. You also need stamina. Any horse can win, making it a perfect place to place bets on underdogs, and you can win big.

The Grand National

The Grand National is one of the most prestigious horse racing events globally. In addition, it is the oldest jump race worldwide. It was created in 1839 by William Lynn, a Liverpool innkeeper. The event takes place on the Aintree course boasting one of the biggest pots in global horse racing.

Since this is a prestigious event, we will see some of the best thoroughbreds compete. In addition, this year’s event boasts of featuring 40 champion thoroughbreds that might compete. So, you should put this one on your radar if you can make it to Liverpool, England.

Kentucky Derby

Horse racing is also popular in America, although not as much as in European countries like the UK. However, in the US, the Kentucky Derby is one of the most prestigious annual events. The race takes place at the Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky and has been around since 1875.

This year’s race will make it the 148th season of the event, and anyone familiar with it will know that there are strict restrictions and regulations to follow. Only the best breeds and successful horses that meet the entry requirement can sign up and enter the event. In addition, the Kentucky Derby is restricted to only 3-year-old horses.

Melbourne Cup Carnival

Our last entry for this year is the one that takes place in Australia, the Melbourne Cup. The race happens on the prestigious Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne, and it is one of the top events that close out the horse racing calendar year. The event has a massive following in the country, and only the best horses enter.

The Cup features a run of more than 3 km, and it is even older than the Kentucky Derby as it started in 1861, and horses from other countries can enter the event. We’ve even seen horses from the US, UK, and Ireland win several races in the Melbourne Cup.

Bottom Line  

Horse racing is an incredible sport that feels everyone with excitement and thrill. You don’t even have to be a fan before you can enjoy a race. Just pick one of these significant events, tune in or go on to watch it live to enjoy the incredible atmosphere at the various horse racing tracks.

First Timer Guide to Attending the Kentucky Derby

Horse racing is a significant sport in the United States. Although it is not as big as Basketball, Baseball, or Football, the sport has a massive following in the country. As you would find various MLB picks today or other top sports, getting picks and betting on horse racing is possible. You only have to find the right sports betting site.

Since there are plenty of horse racing events worldwide, there is a wide range of options. However, the Kentucky Derby is one of the most significant in the US. It has been around since the 19th century, making it one of the oldest horse racing events in the world. As a result, it is a prestigious event that every US horse racing fan should try at least once.

If you plan to attend the 2022 Kentucky Derby, you need to read this guide as it covers all you need to know as a first-timer. So, let’s dive right in!

Plan Far in Advance

Before anything, you need to start your planning process far ahead of the competition. Undoubtedly, you are already considering attending the Derby. So, why not start the planning process to get ahead? In turn, you will have enough time before the competition begins, and there will be no rush.

Book through the Official Website

You need to be careful when you want to book tickets for the event. You will find many shady options looking to siphon your money. So, take your time to find the official Kentucky Derby website and book your tickets. To avoid missing out on tickets and rush hours, you should undoubtedly plan ahead of time.

Consider Tickets Including Food

There are different kinds of tickets that you can buy for the Derby. You should go for the one that comes with food. You do not want to pay extra for food at the Churchill Downs outlets. So, you should consider buying the tickets that include food if they are available and within your spending budget.

Do Some Research on the Horses Ahead of Time

So that you do not look lost before the start of the races, you should ensure that you research the racing horses ahead of time. Once it is certain that you are going to the Kentucky Derby, you should start checking out the different horses and their previous performances at the Derby.

Wear Comfortable Shoes

When you start packing your clothes, you need to consider comfortable shoes. You do not want to have any problem watching the races as they can go on for hours. Therefore, you need to go for comfort over fashion. However, if you can get a pair that can do both, you should certainly go for them.

Wear Pink on Friday

On Fridays, the dress code is pink at Churchill Downs. So, if you are planning to go to the races this year, you should pack pink dresses. The reason is that Friday is devoted to fillies, female horses, races, and it is tagged Oaks Day. So, in honor of that, everyone is expected to adorn pink.

Bring Some Rain Gear

Since this is a springtime event, you should expect rain from time to time. Therefore, you should pack a few clear ponchos so you are ready whenever it rains and do not have to miss the races.

Don’t Forget Sunscreen

Even though it is spring, you still need to go with your sunscreen to avoid getting sunburned. You might have to stay under the sun during the event for a while. So, you should try packing a few sunscreens before leaving the house.

Learn How to Bet

Before going to the event, you should learn how to place a few bets on the horses. Not to worry, there are many resources online that can help you get started. In addition, ensure that you already know about the horses before you start placing your bets.

Final Thoughts

The Kentucky Derby is undoubtedly exciting to watch, and if you can make it down to Churchill Downs, you will have a massive range of fun. So, if you want to attend this year’s event, you need to start planning today. Take your time to follow this guide, and you will not have any problems.

US Horse Racing Top 4 Betting Events

Interest in horse racing in the United States has never been higher, with increased media coverage helping to promote the sport to a much wider audience in recent years.

Nowhere is that point better highlighted than in the United Kingdom, where Sky Sports Racing broadcasts live action from the US on a daily basis. This has created a scenario where the top-class races in the US now attract significantly more international entries, thus boosting the quality of the action.

Read on as we take a look at the four standout events in the US racing calendar – the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, Belmont Stakes, and Breeders’ Cup.

Kentucky Derby

The Kentucky Derby is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbred horses held over 10 furlongs at Churchill Downs in early May. It is the first leg of the Triple Crown alongside the Preakness and Belmont, and generally attracts a field of 20 runners.

Horses can qualify for the event by accumulating points in a series of 35 races dubbed the ‘Road to the Kentucky Derby’, which take place at tracks across the US, Europe, and Asia.

Often called the ‘Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports’, the Derby regularly attracts more than 150,000 spectators to Churchill annually.

Preakness Stakes

Run over a slightly shorter distance of one and 3/16 of a mile, the Preakness Stakes is staged at Pimlico Racecourse on the third Saturday in May each year.

Attendance at the Preakness Stakes usually beats all other stakes races including the Belmont Stakes, the Breeders’ Cup, and the Kentucky Oaks. The only exception to this is the Kentucky Derby, which often attracts over 20,000 more spectators when it is staged earlier in the month.

Notable past winners of the Preakness include Secretariat, Affirmed, and American Pharoah, each of whom went on to complete the Triple Crown.

Belmont Stakes

Traditionally the third and final leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes is run at Belmont Park on the first or second Saturday in June. Run over one and a half miles, the race is widely viewed as the event which determines the best middle-distance horse in the US, according to the horse racing betting guide.

The most famous winner of the race was Secretariat, whose winning time 2:24.00 remains a track and world record for the distance on dirt.

Justify’s stunning victory under jockey Mike Smith in the 150th running of the race in 2018 saw him become the 13th Triple Crown champion.

The Breeders’ Cup

The Breeders’ Cup World Championships is a series of Grade I thoroughbred races staged annually at different tracks in the US or Canada. It was initially a single-day event, before expanding into a second day in 2007 due to the enormous global interest in the meeting.

The Breeders’ Cup kicks off with Future Stars Friday, which comprises five top-class juvenile races featuring racing’s brightest rising stars. Championship Saturday is one of the richest days in racing, culminating with the hugely prestigious $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic.

Horseracing Series 2021

2021 has been another huge year for the horse racing industry worldwide. While many great events took place, the two main series in the United States were the Triple Crown in the spring and the Breeders’ Cup in the fall.

The Triple Crown

The Triple Crown began in May, making it one of the two most important months on the horse racing schedule. Online horse betting has reached a peak, including many options for betting on the go using horse betting apps such as these: https://horse-betting.pro/guides/best-horse-betting-apps/.

The Triple Crown series of races are traditionally run in May and early June of each year, although global events have resulted in schedule adjustments, such as in 1945 and 2020.

On the first Saturday of the month of May, and the first of the Triple Crown series, the legendary Kentucky Derby takes place at a distance of a mile and a quarter. With a purse of some $3 million and a huge worldwide following, the Derby is one of the top horse events on the planet.  Thunderous applause can be heard from afar during the Kentucky Derby at the gorgeous Churchill Downs (Kentucky).

It is dubbed “The Run for the Roses,” stemming from the blanket of roses draped over the winner, and in the United States it is also known as “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports” or “The Fastest Two Minutes in Sports” because of its approximate duration. It is the first leg of the American Triple Crown, followed by the Preakness Stakes, and then the Belmont Stakes.

Three weeks after the Derby comes the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore, Maryland with a distance of 9.5 furlongs (1+3⁄16 miles (1,900 m)) on dirt. It has been dubbed “The Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown.”

The Preakness Stakes has also been termed “The Run for the Black-Eyed Susans” because a blanket of Maryland’s state flower is placed across the withers of the winning colt or filly. Attendance at the Preakness Stakes ranks second in North America among equestrian events, surpassed only by the Kentucky Derby.

An interesting history of the Preakness is that Pimlico officially opened October 25, 1870 with the colt Preakness winning the first running of the Dinner Party Stakes. Approximately 12,000 people attended, many taking special race trains arranged by the Northern Central Railway. Three years later the horse had the 1873 Preakness Stakes named in his honor.

The final leg in the American Triple Crown, open to three-year-old Thoroughbreds, is the Belmont Stakes, known by the nicknames “The Test of the Champion”/”The Run for the Carnations”/”The Third Jewel of the Triple Crown.”  The Belmont Stakes takes place on the first Saturday in June in Elmont (an unincorporated hamlet), New York.

When run at 1+1⁄2 miles, the Belmont Stakes covers one full lap of Belmont Park, known as “The Championship Track,” because nearly every major American champion in racing history has competed on the racetrack. Despite the distance, the race tends to favor horses with tactical speed: relatively few winners close from far behind the early leaders.

The 2021 Belmont Stakes was the 153rd running of the Belmont Stakes and the 110th time the event took place at Belmont Park. It is the final race of the Triple Crown.

The Triple Crown has come to represent the pinnacle achievement in horseracing. In its history, only 13 horses have won all three races; two of them are still alive.

The Breeders Cup World Championships

Ending at one finish line is the of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, an annual series of Grade I Thoroughbred horse races held on the first weekend of November.  These races are operated by Breeders’ Cup Limited, and in 2021, The Breeders’ Cup will return to another iconic racing venue: Del Mar, where the turf meets the surf Southern California style.

The event was created as a year-end championship for North American Thoroughbred racing, and also attracts top horses from other parts of the world, especially Europe.

With the current 2021 year having $31 million in purses and awards, every horse, jockey, trainer, and owner around the world has this two-day, 14-race, year-end culmination of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships in their sights.

Many Breeders’ Cup winners will go on to win the Eclipse Award in their respective division. For example, of the eleven flat racehorse categories, seven of the Eclipse winners in 2015 had also won a Breeders’ Cup race, while three others were in the money.

The Breeders’ Cup Championship Saturday is one of the richest days in racing awarding over $22 million in purses and awards over 9 races, culminating in the defining event of the international racing season, the $6 Million Breeders’ Cup Classic.

Kentucky Derby 2020 – In the Time of Coronavirus

The Kentucky Derby, normally the first race of the Triple Crown, will be on September 5, 2020 instead of the instead of the traditional first Saturday in May. Attendance will be less than 14% of total capacity from event record, maximum of 40% of seated capacity. There will be no General Admission this year and the infield will be closed.

Guests are encouraged to wager online. The potential the Kentucky Derby 2020 contenders sorted by the number of points earned during the Road to Kentucky Derby prep races and help with understanding the Odds for the race can be found at Kentucky Derby odds.

Churchill Downs officials announced a 62-page operations plan that will limit attendance for the Sept. 5 Kentucky Derby to fewer than 23,000 guests. Upon entry to the Derby, guests must have his or her temperature checked, a medical screening, are required to physically distance, and face coverings are mandated.

To reduce crowding, select Kentucky Derby Week activities have been eliminated including autograph signings, concerts in the Plaza, fashion contests, Taste of Derby, the Survivors Parade, and the Red Carpet.

Dawn at the Downs, the annual event to dine while observing morning workouts, has been moved to Monday, Aug. 31, and will be limited to guests with reserved seats; there will be no free general admission.

Reserved seating will be limited to a maximum of 40% occupancy. Also, Standing Room Only or “Walk Around” tickets have been eliminated. All outdoor ticket holders will be reseated in a new comparable location either prior to or during the event to provide for maximum distancing.

Each guest will receive a courtesy “Healthy at the Track” bag, which will include a disposable mask, a pocket-sized hand sanitizer, and a personal stylus for non-contact self-service wagering.

This plan will allow Churchill Downs to safely and responsibly host Kentucky Derby Week (Tuesday, Sept. 1 through Saturday, Sept. 5) with a limited number of spectators. The protocols will be in effect for all five days of the Sept. 1-5 racing meet at Churchill Downs.

The overwhelming early Kentucky Derby favorite is Belmont Stakes winner Tiz the Law, who easily won the 2020 Travers Stakes at Saratoga. Tiz the Law, trained by Barclay Tagg and ridden by Manny Franco, has won six of his seven career starts and $2,015,300. Other top Derby contenders include Blue Grass Stakes and Ellis Park Derby winner Art Collector, Santa Anita Derby winner Honor A. P., and Haskell Stakes winner Authentic.

NBC will televise coverage of the Kentucky Derby and undercard racing on Sept. 5 from 2:30-7:30 p.m. ET. The 146th running of the $1.25 million Longines Kentucky Oaks, the Derby’s counterpart for 3-year-old fillies, will be televised Friday, Sept. 4 on NBCSN from 3-6 p.m. ET.

This will be one of the largest crowds for a sporting event in the United States since sports began shutting down in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic. A crowd of 30,000 fans was allowed at a NASCAR race on July 15 in Bristol, Tennessee.

Per Churchill Downs: “Medical best practices and protocols — many of which we have applied in consultation with experts both inside and outside the sports industry — will be implemented, and we’ll make adjustments all the way up to Derby Day as we find ways to improve and continue to adhere to ever-evolving best practices.”

In 2020, you learn to expect the unexpected. So when the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve announced that it would run on Sept. 5 instead of the traditional first Saturday in May, the schedule of qualifying races included some new summer events that have never had Derby points attached to them before.

In 2013, Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby began a system to qualify horses for the classic race by designating certain prep races with points: the higher the points value of a race, the tougher the competition. That’s because only 20 horses are able to run in the Kentucky Derby each year, and it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: only Triple Crown-nominated 3-year-old Thoroughbreds are eligible to run.

With more than a month left before the big race this year, it looks like the minimum qualifying points may be higher, since the horses lowest on the top 20 list already have at least 30 points to his or her credit.

The standings heading into August have Belmont Stakes winner Tiz the Law on top with a whopping 272 points.

  • Tiz the Law – Manny Franco 6-5. Last Race was Travers Stakes, Saratoga, 8/8, 1st by 5 1/2
  • Art Collector – Brian Hernandez, Jr. 5-1. Last Race was Ellis Park Derby, Ellis Park, 8/9, 1st by 3 1/4

With a little more than a month left until the run for the roses, there are still some prep races with qualifying points on the calendar.

Some of the jockeys have more than one ride. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this may cause some jockeys to give up some of his or her business/races due to Covid 14-day quarantine.

This unprecedented pandemic has caused tracks, most notably Del Mar and Saratoga, to institute policies whereby if a jockey leaves, he or she can’t come back before the meet ends. Both those meets end on Labor Day, two days after the Derby on Sept. 5, so riders from those locales who go to the Derby would miss out on at least the final three days of those lucrative meets.

Churchill Downs has yet to release its final protocols regarding jockeys who travel in for the Derby, the resolution of which could force riders to give up even more significant business at his or her home tracks.

An early working document from Churchill Downs regarding when jockeys needed to arrive required them to be in Kentucky by Aug. 24, which would force a rider to give up the final two weeks at Saratoga and Del Mar. That is expected to be tweaked. Still, for a jockey like Manny Franco, who rides Tiz the Law, or Mike Smith, who rides Honor A. P., it’s worth it, whatever the requirements. Perhaps not so much for others.

Activists are calling for cancellation of the 2020 Kentucky Derby, accusing the city of cracking down on demonstrations ahead of the event.  Protest groups working to find justice for Breonna Taylor want the Kentucky Derby cancelled this year. City leaders are accused of trying to make Louisville look good in front of a national audience, instead of addressing community issues like systemic racism.

Lexington Bourbon Society to Host Zoom Derby Event to Benefit Old Friends

Silver Charm, 1997.

The Kentucky Derby has been postponed, but we still get to celebrate the First Saturday in May. Our friends at the Lexington Bourbon Society are hosting a Zoom Party to celebrate Derby Day and also to help Old Friends and our 200+ retired horses, including 1997 Kentucky Derby-Preakness champion Silver Charm.

There are 50 spaces left to join this event. For every ticket sold, $10 will be donated to Old Friends.  Here are all the details:

What:
Pop-up Derby-In-Place Zoom Party

When:
Saturday, May 2nd 3-6 PM EST (Zoom portion 4:30-6)

Where:
The comfort of your own home

How:
$10 donation paid directly to Old Friends via eventbrite, with your confirmation email from the donation containing your unique Zoom login credentials.
(tickets: derby-in-place.eventbrite.com)

Who:
The first 50 people to complete their donation and receive their login details.

Why:
To support the wonderful work of the fine folks at Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement Farm.

The Lexington Bourbon Society has teamed up with Michter’s Distillery, ubercapper.com, and Lexington’s Wine+market to bring fans a fantastic solution to the 146th Kentucky Derby being moved from the First Saturday in May to Saturday, September 5.

Saturday, May 2nd, NBC Sports will present a virtual Kentucky Derby at Home Party, which includes “The First Saturday In May: American Pharoah’s Run to the Triple Crown”, a look back at American Pharoah’s 2015 Derby win en route to his historic Triple Crown, and “The Kentucky Derby: Triple Crown Showdown”, a socially distant, computer-simulated edition of the Run for the Roses that pits all 13 Triple Crown winners against each other. (full details:  kentuckyderby.com/party)

While you have this broadcast on the television, we will host a zoom.us gathering starting at 4:30 that will include Michter’s schwag giveaways, Derby hat/fascinator/outfit contest, interactive Mint Julep demonstration and recipe, drawing for a private tour for two at Old Friends with Board President Michael Blowen, some fun “wagering”, and live handicapping of the Triple Crown Showdown by syndicated Thoroughbred handicapper Elis Starr (@Ubercapper) and more!

We will post a Zoom tutorial with dos and don’ts to ensure a smooth, enjoyable experience for all attending in the comments.

For more information, visit www.oldfriendsequine.org.

Gotham, Tampa Bay, San Felipe: March Round of Kentucky Derby Prep Races

Image Source.

The 2020 Kentucky is heading to its right track as we come closer to this grand horse racing event. The odds are slowly filling up every horse racing platform as few horses qualify already to run for this event. Some of them are now off in the Derby trail, garnering a sure spot in the Run for the Roses.

In two months’ time, the Kentucky Derby will launch its 146th season at Churchill Downs, Kentucky. There are no significant changes to the rules; however, we are expecting a new batch of three-year-old racehorses that will saddle up in the dirt track. As of today, the strongest contenders for the Derby are Ete Indien, Modernist, Enforceable, and Storm the Court.

Although the horses mentioned above might have their automatic berth to the Derby, it doesn’t mean that other hopefuls cannot rise in the ranking. This month, few prep-Derby races will take place, which can help a racehorse to earn big qualifying points so they can generate excellent odds to win the Kentucky Derby in 2020.

Hence, let’s see the line-up of this month’s Derby-prep races and the possible horses that will compete in this event. This will not only give you another opportunity of participating in the betting games, but it also allows you to scout which racehorse deserves the Kentucky Derby crown this year.

Gotham Stakes

The Gotham Stakes will take place on Saturday, March 7, 2020, at Aqueduct Racetrack, Queens, New York. It is one of the major Derby-prep races where a racehorse must accomplish a one ⅛ mile dirt track. The winning horse will not only earn significant Derby-qualifying points but can also take home a purse prize of $400, 000.

Here are the possible horses to compete in the Gotham Stakes this Saturday.

Mischievous Alex
Mischievous Alex is trained by John C. Servis and ridden by Irad Ortiz, Jr. He became one of the favorites today for the Gotham Stakes after he won the Grade 3 Swale Stakes last February 1, 2020, held at Gulfstream Park.  Aside from that, he also won the Parx Juvenile Stakes last November 5, 2019, at Parx Racing.

Untitled
Untitled is Mark E. Casse’s entry to the Gotham Stakes. He competed against Mischievous Alex in the Swale Stakes, but he only ended up in fourth place. Last February 14, 2020, he fought in Allowance Optional Claiming at Tampa Bay, where he got second place.

Big City Bob
This three-year-old colt is trained by Jorge Duarter Jr., who will saddle in the Gotham Stakes. He is the current titleholder for the Sapling Stakes held last September 1, 2019. Recently, he competed in the Champagne Stakes, where he ended up in third place.

Tampa Bay Derby

The Tampa Bay Derby is another Kentucky Derby prep race that will also take place on March 7, 2020. All racehorses joining this event will compete in a 1 1/16-mile dirt track at Tampa Bay Downs, Oldsmar, Florida. The same with Gotham Stakes, the winners will earn Derby qualifying points and might take home $350, 000 worth of purse prize. Here are some racehorses that will run in the Tampa Bay Derby.

Chance It
Chance It had successfully gathered impressive Derby points, and he’s looking forward to adding more so he can secure a sure spot for the upcoming Kentucky Derby. He is the current Mucho Macho Man Stakes titleholder that takes place last January 4, 2020 at Gulfstream Park.

Sole Volante
After winning the third place in the Mucho Macho Man Stakes, Sole Volante competed in the Sam F. Davis Stakes last February 8, 2020, where he won the title. He will run in the Tampa Bay Derby so he can earn a ticket to compete in the Run for the Roses.

San Felipe Stakes

The last Derby-prep race that will take place this Saturday is the San Felipe Stakes. This is a Graded two horse racing showdown that will settle at Santa Anita Park, Arcadia, California. The winning horse can also earn Derby-qualifying points along with a $400, 000 purse prize. Here are some racehorses that will compete in the San Felipe Stakes.

Storm the Court
Storm the Court has continuously impressed every horse racing fans after placing fourth in the San Vicente Stakes. He will run in the San Felipe Stakes to seal his entry to the Kentucky Derby by earning solid quaying points if he wins.

Authentic
Authentic doesn’t want to miss any Derby-prep race to boost his placement in the current Kentucky Derby odds ranking. This Grade 3 Sham Stakes winner is taking another chance in the San Felipe Stakes to lock his entry in the Run for the Roses successfully.

Takeaway

With the Derby-prep races bound to happen this weekend, racehorses that can finish the racing game with flying colors can surely boost their ranking and might secure their spots in the upcoming Kentucky Derby race.

Patch, 2017 Kentucky Derby Contender, Arrives at Old Friends

Patch with assistant farm manager Antonio Marin.

GEORGETOWN, KY – JANUARY 20, 2020 – Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement facility based in Georgetown, KY, welcomed 2017 Kentucky Derby contender and graded-stakes-placed Patch.

The son of Union Rags out of the A. P. Indy mare Windyindy, Patch was donated to the non-profit organization by owner Calumet Farm following his three-season racing career. His last start was in the Birdstone Stakes at Saratoga this past August.

A 30-1 long shot in the 2017 Kentucky Derby, Patch became the season’s feel-good story after it was revealed that he had lost his left eye as a two-year-old but overcame his adversity to make it to the Churchill Downs starting gate on the First Saturday in May.

Trained by Todd Pletcher and ridden by Tyler Gaffalione, Patch eventually finished 14th in that race behind winner Always Dreaming.

“Patch is a great horse and he has a great story,” said Old Friends founder and President Michael Blowen. “He is beloved by fans, and we are so looking forward to welcoming them this year. Patch has already stolen the hearts of everyone at Park Equine, where he spent a week while we made paddock space available, and everyone here is really excited about him.

“Our gratitude goes out to Calumet for entrusting us with Patch,” Blowen added, “as well as to Park Equine, and to the people at Sallee Horse Vans for transportation.”

Old Friends is planning a “Welcome Home Patch” day at the farm sometime in the near future. Announcements will be made soon with date, time, and details.

For more information, please call (502) 863-1775 or visit the website at www.oldfriendsequine.org.

MEDIA CONTACT: Cynthia Grisolia, (347) 423-7322, cindy@oldfriendsequine.org; Michael Blowen (502) 863-1775, michael@oldfriendsequine.org

The World’s Biggest Horse Races

Photo credit – Pixabay.

Horse racing is known as the sport of Kings. For generations, people have flocked to the track to share in the excitement generated by a horse race meet.

The horses and jockeys become household names and often the skills behind the events are underestimated. Trainers put months of work into keeping the horses in great shape; jockeys train incessantly to ensure they’re in tip-top condition.

Horse racing is a science, a sport of tactics, outside variables, and opinion. Across the world, some races are so rewarding and famous that a win can turn the career of a jockey in an instant. Some countries have a signature race, one which not only enthusiasts watch, but even people with no more than a passing interest in sport.

So, here are some of the biggest horse races in the world.

Kentucky Derby

Churchill Downs hosts perhaps the most famous horse race in the U.S and one that is recognizable across the world. Inaugurated in 1875, it was first run over the same length as the Epsom Derby in the UK, before shortening to its current length of 10 furlongs just before the turn of the 19th century.

Eddie Arcaro and Bill Hartack share the record for the most wins by a single jockey, coming in first on five occasions each. In more modern times, Calvin Borel entered the record books for winning three out of four races, as outlined by a Bloomberg report.

Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe

The French capital is a hotbed of activity for horse enthusiasts, not just in the racing genre. The 11th Longines Masters of Paris saw three French riders in podium places, but the city’s premier horse racing event is rarely as cut and dried.

bwin Horse Racing calls the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe Europe’s richest race with a total prize purse in the region of €5m ($5.59m). It came a little later than the Kentucky Derby, first being run in 1920, but it has risen to be one of the major events on the European sporting calendar.

Renowned jockey Frankie Dettori holds the records for the most wins, spanning 13 years. His first victory came back in 1995 on Lammtarra (1995), before winning on Sakhee (2001), Marienbard (2002), Golden Horn (2015), and a double with Enable (2017, 2018).

Grand National

Just across the channel lies the United Kingdom, one of the first countries to embrace horse racing as a passion. The biggest race in the country takes place in the early part of the year having been run ever since 1839 at Aintree on Merseyside.

It’s run over a gruelling four miles and isn’t without controversy; some calls have been made in British media to stop the race from happening.

Perhaps the most famous name in Grand National history is Red Rum; the champion thoroughbred won the race in 1973, 1974, and 1977, finishing second in 1975 and 1976. Such was his legacy, when he died in 1995 aged 30, they buried him at the finishing post of the race he had come to define.

Early Odds and Predictions: Kentucky Derby 2019

Photo by Mathew Schwartz on Unsplash.

It’s the time of the year again where horse racing becomes the talk of the town. And horse racing fanatics start to think about the Triple Crown.

Although there are many other horse racing events to bet too, that will not hinder or impede the most well-known horse racing event in the whole world from getting any attention. Kentucky Derby is, without a doubt, still one of the most anticipated races of the year, and a lot of people will want to know how they can prepare for it.

In other words, knowing the early odds and predictions of the race can be a huge help of whom you’d want to bet to. For a little help, here is a list of the Kentucky Derby Betting odds.

Top Betting Odds

Game Winner

This colt is the early Kentucky Derby 2019 favorite. So, if you are searching for a “safe” bet for the 2019 Kentucky Derby, then Game Winner might be the perfect one.

Of course, poor runs and injuries can harm any horse. However, Bob Baffert’s got something with him, and most of the people are noticing it.

Yes, it is worth questioning if time will be on the early favorite. But we cannot eradicate the fact that it had five consecutive wins last year. However, only time can tell of this early favorite remains as the favorite.

Nevertheless, it is something to consider as bettors analyze Game Winner as well as the other colts in the Derby. Apparently, Game Winner is trained by one of the best trainers in the horse racing business.

Plus, he got four consecutive wins under his belt. Game Winner is, for the most part, priced not as an early favorite. And we get nearer to the big event, and mere contenders will end up getting the +800 tags or more.

If you don’t want to place a bet on Game Winner, there are still four horses that could be worth your money and time.

Improbable

One of the top challengers is Improbable. Aside from the Game Winner, Improbable is also favored by many.

Plus, it’s one of Bob Baffert’s gems as well. Thus, he can go into the 2019 Kentucky Derby all too well. Taking into consideration that Bob Baffert has five straight wins, betting on one of his gems makes sense, mainly if they seem viable.

If it is not Game Winner, then it may be Improbable. Improbable has three wins and won huge at the Los Alamitos Futurity.

Coliseum

Another favorite in horse racing is Coliseum. He is also one of Bob Baffert’s trainees. In the pecking order, Coliseum ranks number three. However, he has won the only high-race he has run.

Plus, Coliseum looks to have the long and sturdy legs that will give him a high chance at success. Well, for most bettors, this is not the Baffert gem that they would put their money on right now. However, if you can get a feasible Bob Baffert Colt at this price, you might need to think about it.

Maximus Mischief

Maximus Mischief is another colt that bettors should not miss. This colt has proven his spot with a convincing 2018 Remsen Stakes win.

Many are hesitant to put their money down on this one. Nevertheless, Maximus Mischief is a solid horse that has a 3-0.

Mucho Gusto

There are many other horses to consider, and it is quite early to argue which is best. But surprisingly, horse racing experts seem to like Mucho Gusto, giving Bob Baffert another opportunity to nab or get a Kentucky Derby win.

If things go down drastically, it is not wrong to think that Mucho Gusto could become a real threat among the other challengers. This colt does not have the reputation of his fellow counterparts. However, he won at the Bob Hope Stakes and took the second place to his fellow Baffert gem Improbable at the Los Alamitos Futurity.

Could Mucho Gusto be the one everyone overlooks? Well, that is something horse racing bettors need to rationalize this Kentucky Derby 2019.

Takeaway

If you want to bet on the Kentucky Derby 2019, then it’s ideal to bet as early as you can. Why? It’s because you can exploit the values that you might miss later on.

But you do not need to bet now if you don’t want to. If you’re going to put your money down, you can look for betting sites such as https://www.tvg.com/promos/kentucky-derby/.