Kentucky Derby Viewers Guide for Beginners and Bettors

Kentucky Derby Viewers Guide for Beginners and Bettors

2022 Kentucky Derby Purple Background

TheSportsgeek has compiled the best and most complete Kentucky Derby viewers guide for beginners and bettors online. Horse racing might not be your game of choice for sports betting, so it could all feel a bit foreign.

For a lot of bettors, the Kentucky Derby and Triple Crown is the only time that they bet on the ponies. I’m somebody who bets on horse racing almost every day, so this is just another race when it comes to my bankroll. That said, the whole event makes for an exciting day.

We will try to answer all of your Kentucky Derby questions as a starter pack for the Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs. If you are looking for a breakdown of how to bet on horse racing and the best horse racing betting sites, TheSportsGeek has you covered on our horse racing betting sites page.

Important Kentucky Derby Questions and Answers

When is the Kentucky Derby?

The 148th Kentucky Derby always takes place on the first Saturday in May. The pandemic postponed the Kentucky Derby in 2020, but we’re back to a regular schedule with no restrictions at Churchill Downs. In 2022, the first Saturday in May is May 7.

What time is the Kentucky Derby?

The Kentucky Derby is scheduled to take place at approximately 7:00 p.m. EST. Depending on earlier races and horses taking time to enter the gate, this could be later than 7:00 p.m. EST.

When is Kentucky Derby Post Time?

Post time for the Kentucky Derby is scheduled for 6:57 p.m. EST. The gate will open and the Kentucky Derby will begin shortly thereafter.

What Channel is the Kentucky Derby On?

The Kentucky Derby will air on NBC,, and the NBCSports App.

How Long is the Kentucky Derby?

The Kentucky Derby is dubbed “the most exciting two minutes in sports” for a reason.

The race takes approximately two minutes to complete.

Secretariat’s time of 1:59.40 from 1973 is still the track record to beat.

Where is the Kentucky Derby Held?

The Kentucky Derby is at Churchill Downs in Louisville. The first race took place in 1875.

How Long is the Kentucky Derby Track?

The Kentucky Derby is a 1 ¼ mile event, which translates to 10 furlongs. The Belmont Stakes is the longest race of the three Triple Crown races.

How Many Horses are in the Kentucky Derby?

The Kentucky Derby is a 20-horse field, barring any scratches before post-time. Horses qualify for the Kentucky Derby accumulated through Road to the Kentucky Derby prep races.

What Year did the Kentucky Derby Rose Garland First Appear?

The Kentucky Derby rose garland was first awarded in 1986 to Ben Brush.

A floral arrangement consisting of white and pink roses was given to him. The red rose became the official flower of the Kentucky Derby in 1904, hence the Run for the Roses.

In 1932, the 400-rose sash that is presented today first appeared at the Kentucky Derby.

How Much Does it Cost to go to the Kentucky Derby?

This will depend on when you purchase your tickets. Churchill Downs have early bird prices for general admission, which get more expensive closer to the Kentucky Derby.

November 19 – December 31:


January 1 – February 28:


March 1 – April 17:


April 18 – Day Before Event at Noon:


How Much is a Beer at the Kentucky Derby?

The typical cost of a beer at the Kentucky Derby is around $10.00 for a domestic brand and $12.00 or more for a premium brand.

Which is expected at a marquee sporting event in 2022.

The cocktail of the Kentucky Derby, the mint julep, is approximately $15.00 with a souvenir glass. There is a deluxe version of the mint julep worth $2,500.00.

What to wear at a Kentucky Derby Party?

Getting dressed up for a Kentucky Derby party is what many women get most excited about for the first Saturday in May. Women typically break out the bright and colorful spring dresses.

Of course:

No Kentucky Derby outfit would not be complete without an eye-catching hat or headgear. Men are asked to dress up and avoid dark colors as well. Colorful suits that aren’t shy of using multiple color palettes are welcome.

Think spring and summer colors. A fedora to complete the look would be a nice touch.

Who won the Kentucky Derby?

The last five winners of the Kentucky Derby include some memorable races. However, no one has been able to accomplish what American Pharoah did in 2015 with a Triple Crown win.

2021 – Mandaloun:

Brad Cox

2020 – Authentic:

Bob Baffert

2019 – Country House:

William Mott

2018 – Justify:

Bob Baffert

2017 – Always Dreaming:

Todd Pletcher

Which horse was disqualified from the Kentucky Derby?

There are two notable disqualifications at the Kentucky Derby in recent memory. Country House won the Kentucky Derby in 2019 after Maximum Security was disqualified for interference.

Maximum Security was the best horse in that race, but his infraction gave the win to Country House. The most recent and well-known disqualification came months after the 2021 Kentucky Derby.

Medina Spirit was officially disqualified in February for a failed drug test. Mandaloun, who placed 2nd at the wire, was awarded the Kentucky Derby win.

Has a female horse won the Kentucky Derby?

Yes. There are three fillies that have won the Kentucky Derby.

The first was in 1915 with Regret and it was until 1980 when Genuine Risk won the Derby. The most recent female to win the Kentucky Derby was Winning Colors in 1988.

Only two females have participated in the Kentucky Derby in the last 20 years.

How much does the jockey get for winning the Kentucky Derby?

The jockey receives a 10% cut from the purse. This equates to $186,000. However, the jockey must give a 25% fee to his agent.

How to bet on the Kentucky Derby?

There are several different ways to bet on the Kentucky Derby. The most basic Kentucky Derby bets are a win, place, and show bet. Win is obvious, but if you are new to horse racing, place, and show bets might be different.

With a place bet, your horse will have to finish at least 2nd.

A show bet will cash if your horse finishes 3rd or better. You are free to bet on as many horses as you’d like. If you want a higher payout, you will want to look at exacta, trifecta, and then the superfecta bet. The exacta is correctly selecting the 1st and 2nd horses, followed by the trifecta, 1st, 2nd, 3rd.

The most difficult bet to win is the superfecta, but it typically comes with a big payday for predicting the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th horses. All major racebooks online will have these bets available at their racebook.

Where to bet on the Kentucky Derby

Most major online betting sites have a racebook for horse racing. TheSportsGeek has put together a list of the best Kentucky Derby betting sites. All of these websites are trusted and will payout.

Who are the favorites to win the Kentucky Derby?

According to Bovada, Epicenter is currently the betting favorite to win the Kentucky Derby at +400. Messier and Taiba have the next best odds to win the Kentucky Derby at +650. Ethereal Road has the longest odds to win the Derby at +15000.


Author: Tamara Kim