The Run for the Roses, which is usually held on the first Saturday in May each year, will not take place this year, as usual, ESPN reported citing sources. The sports network said that the event is being moved to September 5.
The last time the horse race was postponed was in World War II when it took place in June.
Why It Matters
The Kentucky Derby is the most prestigious horse race in the U.S. The Churchill Downs racetrack explained on its website, “The safety and health of our guests, team members and participants remains our primary concern.” The racetrack said they were monitoring COVID-19 developments with “steadfast vigilance.”
Churchill Downs owns the historic racetracks founded in 1875 that host the Kentucky Derby. It also operates Arlington Park, the Calder Race Course, the Fair Grounds Race Course, and the Trackside Off-Track Betting Facilities.
In 2019, the Kentucky Derby saw record bets placed worth $165.5 million. The event is attended by a crowd of 150,000 people each year, which is more than the Super Bowl, the World Series, or the NCAA Final Four, according to the Racetrack.
A number of events have been canceled due to COVID-19. The Boston Marathon will no longer take place on April 20, and the 2020 Masters Tournament has been put off till further notice. A full list of event cancelations is available on Benzinga.
Churchill Downs shares traded 0.66% lower at $75 in the after-hours session on Monday. The shares had closed the regular session 18.62% lower at $75.50.
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