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Countdown to the Derby

Posted by Jan Shepherd  April 16, 2010 03:01 PM

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  The  two-week Kentucky Derby Festival  storms open tomorrow with "Thunder Over Louisville," a riverfront extravaganza featuring an afternoon air show and one of the nation's largest fireworks display in the evening.  ("Thunder" is so loud that organizers recommend leaving pets at home.)

  The rest of the time leading to the April 30 Kentucky Oaks race for fillies and the May 1 Derby at Churchill Downs is crammed with southern-style celebrations, among them elegant balls, golf tournaments, concerts, Balloonfest, bed races, "Taste of Louisville," runners' expo, steamboat races, and a Pegasus Parade.

      Visit www.kdf.org for the full schedule and information on ticketed events or call the festival hotline at 502-584-3378.
     
     As for the likely 20 3-year-old thoroughbreds in the Derby, the early favorite is Eskendereya, who left his opponents in the dust at the April 3 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct in New York City. For the latest race news and entries, visit Churchill Downs's special site.

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