BETTING ON THE MOST EXCITING TWO MINUTES IN SPORTS
Every year, the first Saturday in May, sports fans across the globe gather to watch “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports“, The Kentucky Derby. They have been running this race since 1875, the oldest continuing sports event in the United States. Sports fans have also been betting on this race since 1875.
In the last 15 years we have seen the betting volume on the Kentucky Derby increase due to the number of offshore sportsbooks ready to take your bet. You can bet the traditional win, place and show, exotics such as exactas, horse vs. horse matchups and just about every prop bet imaginable, including who will come in last!
The excitement surrounding the race, for some, is not the fact that they have a wager on the race. In many cases, the wager is secondary. A token if you will. Rather, the excitement comes from the process leading up to the race. The handicapping process.
For many, that process starts several months beforehand, with all the Kentucky Derby prep races. For others, it’s process that may only start the day before, or even the day of the race. Either way, the excitement comes from the process of handicapping the race, and then tuning in to watch and see if you’re right. Many folks pOur over racing forms, post positions, speed ratings and other horse racing systems. They toss out some horses based on these findings and circle others. Some buy tip sheets and some probably even throw darts.
The Derby fans day is filled with anticipation unlike any other. He or she continues the handicapping process all day, figuring out last minute exotic wagers and long shot picks. The television coverage on Derby day starts early. ESPN carries the undercard, all the while profiling Derby contenders. Then the network, NBC picks up coverage, which this year, is extended to a full 2.5 hOurs. During that 2.5 hOur stretch, we hear all the stories. The horse that almost didn’t make it. The horse that was bought for pennies on the dollar. The horse owned by some little old lady. There’s drama for sure. Which only enhances what’s about to come.
During the “preGame” if you will, we’ll also hear from all the so called experts who will weigh in with their Derby selections. We’ll get constant updates on the odds as they shift all day long. We’ll get interviews with the likes of Nick Zito and Todd Pletcher. By Post Time we’ll have had Our fill of Kentucky Derby build up. We’ll know everything there is about every horse in the race, which, of course, makes it all the mote exciting. Not unlike the Superbowl.
After all the build up, all the hype, there’s nothing quite like the buglers call to post. Or is it a trumpet? At any rate, right after that we hear the first few notes of “My Old Kentucky Home” and well, folks, there’s really nothing quite like it in all of sports. That is followed by the post parade as the horses take the track and make their way to the starting gate. This can be compared to a ring entrance in a big heavyweight title fight!
We wait as the last horse is ushered into the gate and then BAM! the gate opens and the race is underway. For the next 2 minutes we are on the edge of Our seats, whereever that may be, as we watch the race unfold. All the speculation, all the anticipation, all the predictions unfold before Our eyes in a matter 2 minutes time. At which time, we are either the hero, telling anyone who will listen that we had the winner. That we told you so. Or, we’re sitting their scratching Our head wondering how the heck that just happened. Didn’t see that coming!
Either way, it’s an event unlike any other. One that this writer has looked forward to year after year since he was 11 years old and watched Seattle Slew win the Derby and the Triple Crown. Somewhere out there, there’s an 11 year old kid who will watch the Kentucky Derby this year, and will embark on a lifetime of anticipation for that first Saturday in May. It truly is the Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports!