## Encyclopedia > Kentucky Derby

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# Kentucky Derby

The Kentucky Derby is a 1 ¼ mile thoroughbred horse race for three-year-old horses run on the first Saturday of May each year at Churchill Downs[?], Louisville, Kentucky along with the Kentucky Oaks since 1875.

Modeled after the Epsom Derby in England, it is the first race of the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing followed two Saturdays later by the Preakness Stakes and three weeks later, the Belmont Stakes.

The winner of the very first race was Aristides in front of a crowd of 10,000 people on May 17, 1875.

The speed record for the race is 1 minute 59 2/5 seconds, set by Secretariat in 1973.

Year Winner

An * designates a Triple Crown Winner
++ Dancer's Image finished first, but was disqualified when a postrace examination revealed traces of a banned drug in the horse.

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