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    Posted May 1, 2015 by
    JohnMcGraw
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Assignment
    Assignment
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Travel photo of the day

    More from JohnMcGraw

    Kentucky Derby Weekend - Get out your hats

     

    It’s that time of year again, the first Saturday in May brings out as they say the most exciting two minutes in sports.

     

    There are really two full days of both horse racing and people watching at Churchill Downs this weekend. Both days always remind me of a time gone by, where everyone used to wear hats.

     

    Friday is Oaks Day where over 100,000 fans will enter Churchill Downs either in the infield or grandstands. On Oaks Day to help bring awareness to breast & ovarian cancer, most will be wearing some shade of pink. This is an easier day to maneuver around the track, shorter lines at concessions and bathrooms, you can make your way over to the paddock to see the horses up close…

     

    On Saturday the crowds arrive throughout the day and by Derby race time they will reach a total of over 150,000. The excitement builds throughout the day, and those few minutes right before the big race are as exciting as anything I have been to. That all starts with the Bugle Call playing and the horses arriving on the track to warm up. As the horses trot up to the gate you hear the anticipation building throughout the crowd.

     

    And they're off… for just over the next two minutes the horses make their way around the four turns of Churchill Downs, with the rowdy infield fans yelling GO BABY GO… Come on 6, come on 5, come on 13… then finally they make their way around the fourth turn as famous track annoncer Dave Johnson used to call “And down the stretch they come!” The horses make their way to the finish line, sometime 3 or 4 wide, and sometimes it's a runaway. Then the crowd turns to the big screen on the backstretch and looks to see if their horse won.

     

    To see more of my photography including more Kentucky Derby photos go to
    www.johnmcgrawphotography.com

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