The Kentucky Derby, America’s oldest continuously held sporting event, is ramping up for its 145th anniversary and the 100th anniversary of the Triple Crown, with a week-long schedule of events, jockey and trainer panels and a taste of Kentucky’s best fare.
The race is run on Saturday, May 4, but Derby Week is a jubilation that draws hundreds of thousands of people to be a part of the excitement. Highlights include:
April 28 – Fan Fest
The 2019 Fan Fest will focus on the Triple Crown’s 100th anniversary, celebrating the achievements of the most recent winner, Justify, in 2018. A panel featuring Justify’s jockey, Mike Smith, and trainer, Bob Baffert, will enthrall attendees with the intricacies of racing and training an unbeatable horse. Maker’s Mark is releasing a private selection bottle, “Cheers to 100 Years” at the event. Supplies are extremely limited.
April 30 – Champions Day at Churchill Downs
Just days before a new winner is added to the books, this new event celebrates champions of the past at Churchill Downs. Legendary jockeys and trainers will be available for an autograph session and the Kentucky Derby Museum will display special Triple Crown memorabilia from its vault, such as Seattle Slew’s 1977 Derby jockey trophy.
May 2 – Thurby at Churchill Downs
Horse racing, bourbon and music come together to form the trifecta of Kentucky pride at Thurby. Old Forester presents a day of thoroughbred racing, live musical performances and expertly crafted cocktails. Attendees can enter the Thurby Classic Sweepstakes for a chance to win box seating for six to the Kentucky Derby and The Longines Kentucky Oaks race.