Understanding Kentucky Derby Qualifications

Understanding Kentucky Derby Qualifications

The final stretch of the 2012 Kentucky Derby prep season is well underway, and already there have been some major shocks that once again have handicappers and racing fans alike throwing their hands up in the air, asking the pleading question, “Will a clear Kentucky Derby favorite please show himself?” So far, the answer is no.

The 138th running of the Kentucky Derby is set for Saturday, May 5, 2012, with a post time of 6:24 P.M E.D.T. at venerable Churchill Downs Racetrack in Louisville, Kentucky. The Derby may not be the richest race in the world or North America, but it is by far the most prestigious, and since it’s also the first leg of the Triple Crown, which is the absolute crown jewel of American thoroughbred horse racing, it’s easy to see why owners, trainers, and jockeys are all clamoring for a shot at winning this race on the first Saturday in May.

Since the Kentucky Derby is a race that, with its long history and tradition, attracts so much national media attention, it would seem only right that we provide you with a quick rundown on the Kentucky Derby qualifications that each of the twenty horses that ultimately are chosen must have before they can secure themselves a place in the starting gate for the Run for the Roses.

First, only three-year-old thoroughbred racehorses are allowed to compete in the Kentucky Derby. These three-year-olds can either colts or fillies, and can also be geldings or roans. In the history of the race, nine geldings have won (most recently Mine That Bird in 2009), three fillies have won (last was Winning Colors in 1988), while no roans have ever won. The overwhelming majority of the winners of this race have been colts.

Thoroughbreds are eligible to compete in races at the juvenile age of two years old. They typically run in a special category of races called maiden special weights (MSW) until they win their first race. The usual move is to then have the horse run in an allowance race. Once a horse wins an allowance race in good form, a good horse is then sent to run in graded stakes races, and it’s here where the key to Kentucky Derby qualifications lies. Hundreds of racehorses compete in graded stakes races when they are two and three-years-old, but only the top twenty horses on that list are able to secure a spot in the Kentucky Derby and, therefore, a chance at immortality for the owner, trainer, jockey, and of course, the horse.




You may login with either your assigned username or your e-mail address.
The password field is case sensitive.
  • scorpion56 earned 500 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 500 Points playing our game.
  • scorpion56 earned 500 Points playing our game.
  • icemanfirst earned 100 Points playing our game.
  • harrylan earned 100 Points playing our game.
  • sleepers earned 100 Points playing our game.
  • sleepers earned 100 Points playing our game.
  • yowdvm earned 100 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 100 Points playing our game.
  • Lear Fan earned 100 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 582,582 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 520,977 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 500,000 Points playing our game.
  • mattaliendi66@gmail.com earned 500,000 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 500,000 Points playing our game.
  • everwild earned 500,000 Points playing our game.
  • MIG70STABLE earned 500,000 Points playing our game.
  • mattaliendi66@gmail.com earned 400,000 Points playing our game.
  • lynchd75 earned 395,967 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 381,981 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 346,846 Points playing our game.
  • tentpeg77 earned 320,677 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 318,532 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 317,116 Points playing our game.
  • doughboy47 earned 300,000 Points playing our game.
  • rlparlett earned 291,291 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 290,089 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 280,780 Points playing our game.
  • duss860 earned 277,777 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 267,267 Points playing our game.
  • captainmorgan earned 264,810 Points playing our game.
  • ahijah earned 264,049 Points playing our game.
  • allinthegate earned 254,826 Points playing our game.
  • nickvegas earned 238,781 Points playing our game.
  • shelbyjoe earned 232,947 Points playing our game.
  • cavetroll earned 229,515 Points playing our game.
  • blackghost earned 226,941 Points playing our game.
  • stonedlocust earned 225,654 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 221,793 Points playing our game.
  • icemanfirst earned 219,862 Points playing our game.
  • rvoquinn earned 218,880 Points playing our game.
  • abogado earned 215,280 Points playing our game.
  • icemanfirst earned 215,143 Points playing our game.
  • sleepers earned 214,929 Points playing our game.
  • norbert2464 earned 208,065 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 206,563 Points playing our game.
  • poopzee earned 201,415 Points playing our game.
  • shelbyjoe earned 200,640 Points playing our game.
  • socalfan earned 200,000 Points playing our game.
  • saratoga95 earned 200,000 Points playing our game.
  • mrvend earned 200,000 Points playing our game.
  • saratoga95 earned 200,000 Points playing our game.
  • califokie earned 200,000 Points playing our game.
  • Maryse IV earned 200,000 Points playing our game.
  • socalfan earned 200,000 Points playing our game.
  • dustyla2 earned 199,485 Points playing our game.
  • ahijah earned 199,056 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 193,693 Points playing our game.
  • jimmycroker earned 193,050 Points playing our game.
  • 21burns earned 192,192 Points playing our game.
  • perfectouchnj earned 191,763 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 190,905 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 188,760 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 185,328 Points playing our game.
  • icemanfirst earned 185,328 Points playing our game.
  • jimmycroker earned 183,183 Points playing our game.
  • icemanfirst earned 182,325 Points playing our game.
  • dustyla2 earned 179,985 Points playing our game.
  • sleepers earned 173,745 Points playing our game.
  • georick2 earned 169,884 Points playing our game.
  • jimmycroker earned 168,168 Points playing our game.
  • icemanfirst earned 166,452 Points playing our game.
  • rlparlett earned 164,500 Points playing our game.
  • hiplainsryan earned 158,301 Points playing our game.
  • scorpion56 earned 156,585 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 155,667 Points playing our game.
  • rlparlett earned 155,400 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 154,440 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 154,011 Points playing our game.
  • scorpion56 earned 151,008 Points playing our game.
  • lynchd75 earned 129,129 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 120,022 Points playing our game.
  • ratelic earned 118,404 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 105,885 Points playing our game.
  • jerrygates earned 102,000 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 100,000 Points playing our game.
  • warto4 earned 100,000 Points playing our game.
  • d.oliver earned 99,500 Points playing our game.
  • micmac earned 98,670 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 71,175 Points playing our game.
  • pledelen earned 68,900 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 64,584 Points playing our game.
  • kinglilman earned 58,695 Points playing our game.
  • ziggyredlag earned 57,610 Points playing our game.
  • scorpion56 earned 52,097 Points playing our game.
  • tawee57 earned 50,824 Points playing our game.
  • warto4 earned 50,000 Points playing our game.
  • jerrygates earned 50,000 Points playing our game.
  • jerrygates earned 50,000 Points playing our game.
  • frelance earned 50,000 Points playing our game.
  • frelance earned 50,000 Points playing our game.
  • tentpeg77 earned 45,158 Points playing our game.
  • ahijah earned 45,158 Points playing our game.
  • njstan earned 45,158 Points playing our game.
  • jerrygates earned 45,000 Points playing our game.
  • norbert2464 earned 45,000 Points playing our game.
  • norbert2464 earned 45,000 Points playing our game.
  • frelance earned 45,000 Points playing our game.
  • frelance earned 45,000 Points playing our game.
  • mattaliendi66@gmail.com earned 45,000 Points playing our game.