As the start of 2015 unfolds, the excitement of the Kentucky Derby begins to heat up! The 141st running of the Kentucky Derby on May 2nd, 2015 is just around the corner.
Every year, about 25,000 thoroughbreds are foaled in North America. About one percent of those will be nominated to the Triple Crown event. Only twenty will finally be allowed to run in the Kentucky Derby. Owners must nominate their horse to be eligible by paying a nomination fee of $600.00 initially. Then, they must add $6,000.00 by March. The entry fee is $25,000.00 and if the horse makes it to the starting gate, another $25,000.00 is required. Churchill Downs guarantees a purse of $2,000,000.00 with the winner receiving at least $1,240,000.00. The owner also receives a gold Kentucky Derby Trophy, currently valued at $95,000.00.
The owners and trainers are starting to maneuver their horses into the prep races in which they establish points that will qualify them for the big race. Only 20 three year olds with the most point will make the final cut. There are a number of prep races that sort out the field and prepare the horses for the Kentucky Derby. Chief among those is the Wood Memorial held at Aqueduct in April, which tends to “Separate the men from the boys”. Another key race is the Santa Anita Derby held at the Premier Race Track in California. Other important stake races include the Florida Derby at Gulfstream, The Arkansas Derby at Oakland Park, The Illinois Derby at Hawthorne, The Louisiana Derby at Fairgrounds, and The Bluegrass Stakes at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington.
Horses that lead the field in derby point standing early in the year are El Kabeir, International Star, Upstart, Carpe Diem, Calculator, Texas Red, Mr Z, and Far Right. Upstart, who is owned by Randy Evans and trained by Rick Violette, won the Holly Bull Stakes at Gulfstream in January to earn 10 points. Two winners of the Holy Bull Stakes have gone on to win the Kentucky Derby – Barbaro in 2006 and Go For Gin in 1994.
All in all, 2015 is stacking up to be another great year in thoroughbred racing. Derby Tickets, Inc. would like to make you a part of the excitement. Contact us for information on Kentucky Derby Tickets, Hotel Reservations, Kentucky Derby Parties, Tours, and other events.