Can the Kentucky Derby Be Canceled?

Run For The RosesBuying tickets to the Kentucky Derby and planning to spend your day at Churchill Downs is an investment of time and money. For bettors, a great deal of reading and video watching is done in order to pick the horses that are most likely to win. Adding to the anxiety of the anticipating which horse will cross the finish line, some are worried that they will have no chance at all because the Kentucky Derby might be canceled. However, with some insight about the history of the past 138 Kentucky Derby’s, these fears will be quelled.

The tumultuous weather at last year’s Kentucky Derby

In the week before the 2012 Kentucky Derby, our website’s writers were living less than two miles from Churchill Downs. During that time, egg-sized hail rained down upon the neighborhood, and many feared that there would be a tornado. Another problem is that the classic Churchill Downs tulip landscaping was still not blooming. It seemed like there was a lot of signs pointing to the fact that the Kentucky Derby might need to be canceled because the weather was terrible. Interestingly, the races were not canceled – and it did not rain on the day of the 138 Kentucky Derby. Unfortunately, the Kentucky Derby does not always have such sunny weather.

The history of Kentucky Derby weather

The United States National Weather Service recently published a handy online guide that shows the weather history of the Kentucky Derby for the past 138 years. Without a doubt, there is a 50/50 chance that it will rain on the day of the Kentucky Derby. If the Kentucky Derby has run each year regardless of the weather, do they make horses run in the rain?

What happens if it rains on Derby Day?

In recent Kentucky Derby races, the start time is 6:24pm. Of course, if the weather is terrible, they can always delay the race and use overhead lights. Churchill Downs also has special equipment to drain the track and make it less muddy. This is not a surprise to our website writers that have lived in Louisville for the past two decades. Generally speaking, the weather in Louisville tends to clear up after 7pm during May. Although it is certainly tornado season during the first weeks of May, there has never been a tornado that has touched down during the Kentucky Derby over the past 140 years.

The one year that the Kentucky Derby was canceled?

Trivia fanatics take note! Compared to other racetracks, the Kentucky Derby has a perfect track record. The race started in 1875 and has been run each year since. This is surprising considering that, during World War II, some racetracks throughout the United States, closed down. For example, Santa Anita Park in California had racing suspended from 1942 to 1944 so that the facility could be used by the military.

Naturally, all of the examples in this article affirm that you should keep your faith alive that the 2013 Kentucky Derby will not be canceled. You are also highly unlikely to have your bet scratched. So kick back, get ready to enjoy the race. If you need some help getting started with Kentucky Derby betting, check out some posts from our updated blog.

Published On May 2, 2013