Every year it happens: “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports,” a thunderous mass of speed, strength and stamina in a run for the roses. I always look forward to it and this year, after my taste of Santa Anita (see my previous blog post), I’m particurally excited. If you can’t make it to “My Ol’ Kentucky Home” for the race, you can still enjoy the party and watch the pre-show and learn the amazing stories of the horses, owners and jockeys (my favorite part, really.) The race will be over in a flash so get ready for it by partaking in the following:
1. Get a hat - putting the “derby” in the Kentucky Derby, hats are the must-have accessory when watching the race. Over the years, ladies hats have become bigger and more extravagant, some elaborated with tiny horses and horseshoes. Most have bouquets of flowers, feathers and netting on the band to the brim, while others have opted for “fascinators,” which can range from a decorated headband to hair clips with ribbons and plumage.
Take a look at some of the wild hats of races past.
See what the celebrities have worn to the Derby in recent years in my Yahoo! report.
- simple syrup or powdered sugar
- whiskey bourbon
- mint sprigs
Learn how to make it with this recipe.
3. Watch a movie – There are at least two great movies based on true stories about horse racing and the famous thoroughbreds that will inspire you to want to be part of the action:
- Seabiscuit - the ultimate story of the little horse that could, Seabicuit was an underdog who found his way into the hands of an owner and jockey who nurtured him into a surprise champion. His winnings brought the nation together during the Great Depression.
- Secretariat – the story of a long-shot stallion and owner Penny Chenery who never gave up faith as she watched her horse become a winner of the Triple Crown and set new speed records in two of the three races.
So mix up your mint julep, pick up a bouquet of red roses, put on your hat and get ready to race, because everybody loves a winner! The Kentucky Derby takes place at Churchill Downs on Saturday, May 5th. Check your local listings.
And they’re off!
Photo by Rotatebot from Wikimedia Commons