2021 Kentucky Derby Day Full Schedule Fan Viewing Guide!
The 147th renewal of the 2021 Kentucky Derby, also known as the Run for the Roses, takes place on the first Saturday of May. The race that dates back to 1875 has become a spring tradition with countless fans around the globe viewing the Derby on TV and thousands, approximately 160,000.00 attending the event in person. Here’s your fan guide to the 2021 Kentucky Derby.
What time is the 2021 Kentucky Derby?
The Kentucky Derby day will be televised on NBC TV from 2:30 pm ET and the main event for the Kentucky Derby will start traditionally at 6:30 pm ET on Saturday of May.
First, make sure you secure your tickets well in advance and get your race-day attire ready. Formal clothing is traditional for the stands and VIP areas. Tradition dictates beautiful hats and red-carpet style fashion for the ladies and suits and ties for the gents.
What TV channel is derby day on?
The derby day will be broadcast on NBCSN and main rare on NBC TV channel.
A mix of country club casual, with a dash of Blue Grass style charm, is also appropriate. Dress for the infield areas is a bit more casual as the area is known as the gathering place for “party-goers” during the day. If you’re worried, the Kentucky Derby website has a section dedicated to fashion!
Now that you’re set, take a look at some of the activities that will take place at Churchill Downs on Kentucky Derby Day. Remember, the Derby is only one of 14 races scheduled for Derby Day.
If you Attend the 2021 Kentucky Derby here’s everything you need to know every step by step guide.
- Gates Open: Get ready for a fun day! Gates open at 8:00 am.
- Betting: Wagering windows open 30 minutes before the first race of the day which is set for approximately 10:00 pm
- Mint Julep: You can’t visit the Derby without having a Mint Julep! The Derby Day traditional drinks are available as soon as the gates open – 8:00 am – and the last call is at post time for the 14th race, approximately 8:10 pm.
- The Roses: The blanket of roses, called a garland, is delivered to the Clubhouse Gate area around 9:45 in the morning. Be there early to grab a spot.
- Visit the Paddock: Get a back-stage view in the paddock area. At least 20 minutes prior the horses will be in the Paddock to each race, for each of the 14 races during the day. Check post time schedule for more information.
- Enlistment Ceremony: The now traditional Derby Day Military Armed Forces Enlistment Ceremony will take place at the Trackside Winner’s Circle at 1:23 pm.
- VIP Red Carpet: It’s Kentucky’s version of an award show! Celebrities take to the Red Carpet from noon until 2:30 pm. Movie stars, musicians, athletes, models, horse owners, and more.
- Artist Signing: Rhonda McEnroe will be in the Plaza area signing her Kentucky Derby and Oaks 146 artwork from 1:00 pm. to 2:00 pm and again from 3:00 pm. to 4:00 pm.
- National Anthem: The National Anthem will take place at Approximately 5:08 pm.
- A Toast!: The Woodford Reserve toast to the Kentucky Derby in Trackside Winner’s Circle takes place at 5:13 pm.
- Watch the 50/50 Raffle Drawing -Location TBD Approximately 5:20 p.m.
- Derby Walk: The Kentucky Derby Contenders, trainers, and connections get ready as they walk from the barn to the Paddock area. The Derby is getting close! At approximately 6:06 pm.
- Riders Up: The traditional call for the jockey’s known as the “Riders Up” will be given at 6:33 pm. Jockeys then mount their horses and head to the track.
- The Song: The Derby Day standard, which is “My Old Kentucky Home”, is sung at approximately 6:35 pm.
- Gate & Race: The riders will take to the gates as fans watch “the most exciting two minutes in sports,” the running 2021 Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve takes place at 6:50 pm.
Roses and Champagne: The 2021 Kentucky Derby Winning Horse will be draped with a Garland of Roses. Then, the G.H.Mumm Champagne Spray takes place in the Kentucky Derby Winner’s Circle at 7:22 pm.
*All information on schedule and times are from the Kentucky Derby website and NBC / NBCSN. Schedules are approximate and the subject may be to change. Please check the Kentucky Derby website, NBC, and NBCSN for any changes.