by Renee Israel
The Kentucky Derby Festival can be a bit mystifying to the
British, as its home page in the internet says "What started with 'two minutes'
has since evolved into two weeks".
The 'two minutes' refers to the actual Kentucky Derby, arguably America's
most prestigious race and a huge betting event that will be contested on
Saturday, May 5. A total of 20 three-year-old thoroughbreds - the best the
United States has to offer - will compete over a distance of 1 1/4 miles on dirt
at Churchill Downs racecourse in Louisville, Kentucky.
The big race, however, is preceded by the two week Kentucky Derby Festival,
which features such events like Thunder Over Louisville, the largest firework
display in North America, a hot air balloon race, a steam boat race, the Pegasus
Parade and the Derby Marathon. The idea is to get visitors to Louisville into
the Kentucky Derby spirit, and prepare them for arguably the biggest annual
horse race in North America.
The Kentucky Derby is known as the "fastest two minutes in sport" because
that is about the time it takes for the race. That said, only twice in the
history of the event has the two minute barrier ever been broken, the first time
in 1973 by the legendary runner Secretariat, and the second time in 2001 by the
The Kentucky Derby has a history of over 130 years and has acquired
traditions along the way. The two events most looked forward to are the garland
of roses given to the winner and the singing of My Old Kentucky Home during the
But ultimately the Kentucky Derby is for betting on the race. Almost all UK
white listed online betting sites offer market on the outright winner. Therefore
the prudent punter will shop around before placing his bet. The top five horses
have the following odds at Bet365 online.
2012 Kentucky Derby Odds at Bet365
Union Rags 9/2
Creative Cause 12/1
Betting on the Kentucky Derby at Paddy Power
Union Rags 5/1
Creative Cause 11/1
Therefore punters wanting to back the favourites like Bodemeister and Union
Rags should prefer Paddy Power online, while those wanting to bet on Gemologist
or Creative Cause should favour Bet365 online.
Some other online betting sites that should be looked at are Ladbrokes,
William Hill and Sportingbet