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Need some information re: Ky Derby entries

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  • Need some information re: Ky Derby entries

    I'm on the Activities Committee at work and we're looking to do something Derby-related. I have an idea ... but... I don't want to leave anyone out. I know right now the list of "Contenders" is extremely long. I also understand that the draw of entered horses happens a few days before the race. My question is... when do horses enter? Is there a "closing date" for entries other than "before the draw"? And the biggie... 8 days out (the friday a week before), would there still be a 25-30 horse "contender" list or will it have dropped closer to 20 at that point?

    I'm thinking of doing some kind of draw within the office and assigning a horse to each participant. There are 45 people in my office and it would be GREAT if a week out there were still that many horses to select from. In the past we've done something different and had 25 or so participants. Just trying to figure out the timing where the number of horses equals roughly the number of participants... so no one gets left out, we're not doubling up, and yet the possibility that the Derby winning horse doesn't get assigned to anyone is limited.

    I hope that makes sense. TIA!
    "Of course it's hard. It's supposed to be hard. It's the Hard that makes it great."

    "Get up... Get out... Get Drunk. Repeat as needed." -- Spike

  • #2
    Originally posted by tle View Post
    My question is... when do horses enter? Is there a "closing date" for entries other than "before the draw"? And the biggie... 8 days out (the friday a week before), would there still be a 25-30 horse "contender" list or will it have dropped closer to 20 at that point?
    This year because of the all-new Derby points system it effectively has narrowed down the list much earlier. Example, at this moment there are only 51 horses which both have Derby points and not injured/off the Derby trail. Last year at this time the list would be tremendously longer.

    There are just 11 Derby points-awarding races left in the remaining six or so weeks. By my math even if you had exclusively brand new horses in every one of those races only the first two finishers would have a legit shot at getting in. Meaning add just 22 horses to the current list of 51 ... thus we have a universe of only 73 credible horses. Make sense?

    For 2013 another change is the number of "Also Eligible" - AE - allotment up from 1 last year to four horses this year. Meaning up to 24 horses may enter the race and four horses can be listed as AE and would be ranked in order accordingly by Derby points earned in case any horse(s) be scratched prior to the race.

    The 139th Kentucky Derby run on Saturday, May 4, 2013 takes the entries the morning of Wed May 1st with a traditional pill pull at the Kentucky Derby Museum. (Gone is the relatively briefly lived televised dog & pony show of owners pinning their randomly drawn names into a post position.)

    All scratches and AEs are determined Friday at 9:00 a.m. ET. Should there be a scratch then the 1st on the AE would move into slot No. 20, and the rest would slide one slot up to fill the gap left by the scratched horse.

    Regardless if a scratch happens at noon on Friday or six on the morning on Saturday the field is the field and they just run the race with the remaining horses.

    Does that help?


    • #3
      I want to know where TLE works, and can I get a job there!
      But he thought, "This procession has got to go on." So he walked more proudly than ever, as his noblemen held high the train that wasn't there at all. H.C.Anderson


      • #4
        They take entries the Wednesday before the first Saturday in May.
        McDowell Racing Stables

        Home Away From Home


        • #5
          Just a thought: I think it's more fun to have an actual participant to root for, a horse actually racing. It would be a drag to draw a horse which is disqualified/drops out a week before the race -- if I'm understanding your idea correctly. Why not have each person draw two horses? The first draw is their pick to win. The second horse determines the winner where more than one person has drawn the same first-place horse. Just make sure that the second horse selection is not repeated with anyone. You could have everyone select the horses by Post Position numbers since you won't have all the names ahead of time.

          This is how we do it at my Kentucky Derby parties and it increases the anticipation and fun for those who selected the first place winner, since you have a little suspense of figuring out which of the three people who selected the same winner has the best finishing second horse -- drum roll... "...and... it's ...Jackie!

          Since I have a small number of people at my parties, we don't draw horse names, we let each person select their favorite and second favorite, (even third favorite if two people have identical choices for the first two) and it always works out. It also adds to the camaraderie when several people have the same winner selected and are excited about their horse or jockey, e.g., "Yay Team Orb!"
          "Random capitAlization really Makes my day." -- AndNirina


          • Original Poster

            Glimmerglass... thanks for the details. It's fascinating to understand how it works. Never really got into it before.

            CVPeg... LOL it's a small corporate satellite office for a good sized department store chain.

            PeteyPie... I like the idea of choosing post positions. Do you do it randomly or do you just let people choose? And having a 2nd or even 3rd horse is a great idea for tie breaking and would allow a really good number of participants (we have 45 int he office and even with only 20 starters, with a 2nd and 3rd choice it would allow for plenty of different options beyond just 20). I think this idea might just work out! Thanks.

            In the past we haven't tied it to the Derby at all. It was one of the reasons actually that I joined the Activities Committee here... because the folks at corporate decided we'd do a Derby activity... IN JUNE!! Sorry... made me twitch (A LOT!). We've done something, but here it's been called The (company) Stakes (roughly around the time of the Belmont). What we did was everyone picked a horse and named them, then we'd have heats, "running" up to 5 horses at a time around a paper track based on eitehr cards (1st year) or the roll of a dice (last year). Winners moved on, 2nd place finishers went to a Wildcard heat. Heat winners won $... and the final 3 places won $. Around here... winning $ tends to bring up the participation levels. Since they moved the activity to near Derby time, I really want to do something tied to the actual Derby... much like we do a checkerboard for the Superbowl. Petey's idea sounds like the ticket.

            Thanks for the replies!!
            "Of course it's hard. It's supposed to be hard. It's the Hard that makes it great."

            "Get up... Get out... Get Drunk. Repeat as needed." -- Spike


            • #7
              Originally posted by tle View Post
              PeteyPie... I like the idea of choosing post positions. Do you do it randomly or do you just let people choose? And having a 2nd or even 3rd horse is a great idea for tie breaking and would allow a really good number of participants (we have 45 int he office and even with only 20 starters, with a 2nd and 3rd choice it would allow for plenty of different options beyond just 20). I think this idea might just work out! Thanks.
              I let people choose for a few reasons. First, it's more fun to pick the horse you like, even if you know nothing about the horses but you like the name, the jockey, a certain number, the pedigree, etc. The second reason is that I don't have that many people at my party so it's no problem to have several people with the first place choice and a second or third place tie breaker. As I said, an unexpected benefit is that when several people choose the same first-place horse, they sort of get excited about being on the same "team." Of course these are adults, it's not like an "OMG we're on the same team!" but more of a point of conversation. It's fun.

              I used to have bigger parties and invite all kinds of people. One time one of my loud-talker friends, who has no interest in horses, was holding forth during the race and trying to tell a story. It kind of ruined the moment because, you know, I wanted to watch THE KENTUCKY DERBY, not listen to a twentieth version of how she has arthritis in her knee, or what cute theme she decided on for her son's birthday party. After that, I decided to reduce the party list to people who are interested in the race. I considered the purpose of the party, whether it was a fun social event or a chance to watch a horse race, and I decided to put more emphasis on the latter, because I can have fun social events for any number of themes or occasions, but when the race comes on, I want to watch it, not be a hostess.

              I mean, it's not like a baseball game that lasts for hours with lots of time in between exciting action, and lots of instant replays. And now I don't have someone asking me, as the horses turn for home, "Why don't you put one of your horses in that race?" -- a question so astounding that it makes me do a double take. I then have to suppress a rude guffaw or sarcastic reply and kindly and patiently explain the many reasons my horses cannot be in the Kentucky Derby. The killer is that I have had people ARGUE with me: "well you should TRY; you never know if you don't give them a chance." I mean, you all can laugh at the idea that my horses are not Kentucky Derby runners because I Am Not a Positive Thinker. And then let me just share with you the comical image that flashes through my mind in response to that sort of statement, the image of my dusty herd:

              Tess, a 20-year-old Thoroughbred ex-broodmare, never raced due to a broken pelvis. Her large stature, years as a broodmare, thick hair and feathery legs make one wonder about draft horse ancestors. She walks with a limp and looks goofy at all times except when she is trotting, at which point she turns into a floaty, beautiful dressage star.

              Lacie, a 22-year-old Thoroughbred, also retired broodmare, who did well in her career at lower-level races. Her beauty and perfect conformation are marred by the oft-bandaged poulticed hoof which seems to have a perpetual abscess.

              Lover, 13-year-old Thoroughbred ex-broodmare, also a successful veteran of lower-level races. Beautiful small bay mare whose luxuriously long mane and tail, love of food, and propensity to crib have given her a portly, thick-necked look of a poorly-bred Morgan.

              Brandy, a tiny Thoroughbred, 20-year-old ex-broodmare, non-winner of any of the few races she was in. She is so small that I had to buy a yearling fly mask for her. The Arab size was too large, but her Arabian ancestry is clear from her slightly dished face, fine hair, and thin skin.

              Yes, any one of them could be in the Kentucky Derby if only I would give them a chance.

              I have learned to bypass the explanations of age requirements, complexities of qualifying to get into the race, the rarity of fillies in the Derby, the necessity of having a really good, fit, well-trained horse, the amount of money you would need to hire the trainers and do everything to get your three-year old there, etc., all of which just make the listener's eyes glaze over in boredom, and I have learned the best response: "Oh, unfortunately, they are not fast enough."
              "Random capitAlization really Makes my day." -- AndNirina