Kentucky Derby Records And Notable Achievements

Kentucky Derby Records And Notable Achievements

The Kentucky Derby has been one of the biggest sporting events on the US sporting calendar since it was introduced in 1875. The first Kentucky Derby was won by Aristides, and since then 145 more horses have won the illustrious race. 

Some horses have become megastars in the world of horse racing, as they have gone on to win the Triple Crown, while others have captured the headlines after huge successes in the Kentucky Derby that nobody could have foreseen. 

The 2020 event will be unlike anything that horse racing fans have witnessed in the past, as it will take place in September for only the first time since the end of the Second World War. Furthermore, the change of date also meant that the Kentucky Derby would not be the first leg of the Triple Crown for the first time since 1931. But, what other records and notable achievements stand out when it comes to the Kentucky Derby?

Quickest Finishing Time

There are two horses that standout from the crowd when it comes to the quickest finishing time that has been achieved in the Kentucky Derby. Spokane’s win in 1889 was the quickest over a mile and a half, as he won in an astonishing time of 2:34.5. Meanwhile, it would appear unlikely that Secretariat’s time of 1:59.4, which was set in 1973 will be beaten over a mile and a quarter. 

Only one other horse has ever finished the race in under two minutes, with Monarchos finishing the Kentucky Derby in a time of 1:59.97. The quickest time from the past ten years was set by Nyquist, as the Doug O’Neill trained horse finished in a respectable time of 2:01.31 in 2016. 

Biggest Margin Of Victory

One of the most popular betting markets available to gamblers for the Kentucky Derby focuses on the distance between the winner and second place. Throughout the history of the race, there have been some dominant winners. 

However, Old Rosebud, Johnstown, Whirlaway and Assault hold the record from the most dominant victories, as they all won their respective races by an incredible eight lengths. The most recent of these horses to achieve that feat was Assault, who finished the 1946 Kentucky Derby with the healthy eight-length lead.

Most Successful Jockey

There are two jockeys that achieved dominance in the race throughout their career, as both Eddie Arcaro and Bill Hartack won the Kentucky Derby on five occasions throughout their career. Arcaro’s successes came in 1938, 1941, 1945, 1948 and 1952. The latter of those successes came onboard Hill Gail, which also ensured that Ben A. Jones was also the most successful trainer in the history of the Kentucky Derby. 

Three of Arcaro’s successes also come on horses owned by Calumet Farm, with the farm being the most successful owners in the history of the race. Hartack followed on from Arcaro’s success, as he went on to win five Kentucky Derby’s between 1957 and 1969. The last of his victories came in 1969 as he rode Majestic Prince to success.

Other Notable Records

There have also been a number of other notable records that have been set in the Kentucky Derby. Donerail remains the highest-priced horse to win the race, as he won at a price of 91/1 in 1913. The biggest price winner of recent years came in 2019 as Country House won at odds of 65/1. 

That race was also historic as Country House didn’t cross the finishing line first and was awarded the victory after Maximum Security was disqualified. 

Calvin Borel made history in 2010, as he became the first jockey to win three out of four Kentucky Derby’s. His back-to-back wins in 2009 and 2010 came on board Mine That Bird and Super Saver respectively. Justify also created history in 2018, as he won the race despite having not raced as a two-year-old. 

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