The Sports Archives – Learning the Kentucky Derby Lingo!

Horse RacingWhile fashion does not always mesh well with sports, the Kentucky Derby is one event wherein attendees are encouraged to be in their most glamorous outfits. But above and beyond the elegant long dresses and flamboyant hats, the Kentucky Derby is actually a century old celebration of the best thoroughbreds in the entire country. Organized in 1875 by Meriwether Lewis Clark, Jr, the derby was started with the idea of raising money to be used in building state-of-the-art racing facilities outside of Louisville, Kentucky. Churchill Downs, named for the individuals who donated the land where the racetrack is now located, was incorporated in 1937.

If you ever think about stopping by the Kentucky Derby, which is held during every first Saturday of the month of May, you first need to be acquainted with a few terms that are used exclusively during the race:

Mint Julep

If an ice-cold bottle of beer is the standard drink for just about any kind of ball game, Mint Julep is the official drink of the Kentucky Derby. A sip of this drink allows attendees to stay true to the derby tradition since Mint Julep was the very same drink that was served to the 10,000 attendees of the inaugural race back in 1875. This cool drink is made from a combination of bourbon, mint and syrup.


If the Mint Julep is the official drink of the Kentucky Derby, then there has to be an official meal and this is the burgoo which is a rich, meaty stew that has become a local favorite and specialty dish of Kentucky. While every local cook has his or her own variation of the original Burgoo, every batch contains a hearty serving of chicken, beef tips, bacon and butter beans among other ingredients.

Triple Crown

While the Kentucky Derby is definitely the most popular of the horse races in the country, there are actually two more races that thoroughbred horses can participate in throughout the year. Aside from the Kentucky Derby, the two other races which consist the Triple Crown include the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes.

Kentucky Derby Festival

The festival actually ends with the Kentucky Derby. This two-week festival is held in Louisville which starts with Thunder Over Louisville, a fireworks show that features 28 minutes of vibrantly lit skies, to be followed by the Thunder Air Show. The air show is participated by over a hundred planes that do gut wrenching dives and acrobatic stunts.

Joseph Sanderson has been a horse racing enthusiast for 15 years. He shares the best insights about Kentucky Derby. Learn more and visit,

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1 Response to The Sports Archives – Learning the Kentucky Derby Lingo!

  1. Pingback: The Sports Archives – Gambling on a Legend! | The Sports Archives Blog

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