For 364 days, 23 hours, and 58 minutes out of the year, most people could care less about Horse Racing. To them, Horse Racing is nothing more then people betting on Horses down at “The Track”. But for some magical reason, on the first Saturday in May, millions tune in to watch The Kentucky Derby for the “Most Exciting 2 minutes in Sports”.
What is it about the Kentucky Derby that captivates the Nation? Is it the fancy hats? Is it the blanket of roses that is awarded to the winner? Is it the host of other traditions? You tell me! I’ll be tuned in this Saturday at approximately 5:00 pm to watch the hour or so of pre-race coverage. I, along with most, won’t even know who is racing without tuning in a hour before the race starts. And once it starts, the excitement continues to build as every 30 seconds goes by. And, as they come down the stretch, folks all across America along with the 100,000+ in attendance, will be screaming at the top of their lungs rooting for a Horse they may forget about the next day.
There are two other “Triple Crown” races a few weeks later, the Preakness Stakes in Maryland and the Belmont Stakes in New York. The anticipation for the Preakness will pale in comparison to the Kentucky Derby and no one will care about the Belmont unless there is an opportunity at “The Triple Crown” – one horse winning all three races.
“The Run for the Roses” is as American as Apple Pie and _____________ (fill in the blank)! In my opinion, it’s second to only the SuperBowl in single event interest. No matter who is playing in the SuperBowl or who is racing at The Kentucky Derby, folks will be watching. The casual sports fan will not tune to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship if THEIR team has been eliminated and most don’t even know what day after New Year’s Day the BCS College Football Championship game is.
So, this Saturday at approximately 6:18 pm EST millions will be watching. They will be watching for approximately 2 minutes and they won’t watch again until 364 days, 23 hours, and some odd minutes have passed. ENJOY THE RACE!
Tom Glatz, Bucks County, PA
I’ve lived in the Greater Philadelphia Region my entire life and have been watching/following sports since I was 5 years old! I have grown to love all that is Philly sports – Phillies, Flyers, Sixers, Eagles, Big 5, Army-Navy, etc. I love talking/chatting sports with those who like or hate the Philly teams. I tell it like it is, whether in favor of our Phillies or in favor of those DAMN YANKEES! 😀
Picture Courtesy of Wikipedia