134th Kentucky Derby
DGF is proud to report on the 134th Kentucky Derby. I scoped it out yesterday so that it will be easier to go in the future. I parked about 3 blocks North on 4th street at a place called Chinese Chef.
It only cost me 5 bucks and it was easy to get in and out. Parking even a block closer cost $25.
When I got there I had to stand in line to be frisked. It is a big deal to be able to sneak alcohol into the infield. People have huge elaborate schemes to get stuff inside. It costs like $9 for a can of beer but it is also a tradition. Security has gotten so strict that people have been burying bottles of stuff in the infield a week or so before and digging it up on Derby Day.
I paid $40 to get into the infield. I figured I would be able to watch the races, just from a bad perspective. I was wrong. Every square inch of the sides of the track are covered by temporary suites for companies to have parties. I never saw a horse the entire day. Here is a suite from Fort Dodge. I wonder what that was about.
I arrived at the start of the 3rd race. I walked down the famous tunnel leading to the infield.
It goes underneath the track. Eazy E should remember this tunnel, because we ran through it and through Churchill Downs for the half-marathon. There was an amazing amount of ogling and heckling going on. These poor women had seats right above the exit from the infield and they were wearing skirts.
Notice how they are sitting sideways! A ticket to the infield also allows you to go inside under the bleachers. If you want to see horses you either need a box ($5000) or a ticket to the grandstands ($121). Next time I go I am getting grandstand tickets. With grandstand tickets you can still go out to the infield and everywhere else, but you actually get to see the horses racing.
Out in the infield people set up little tents, chairs and tarps.
An enormous amount of drinking and debauchery goes on, much too indecent for me to write about.
The classier women dress up in nice dresses and special Derby hats.
Men have many options. My favorite is the seersucker suit either with a bow tie or a regular tie.
Another classy look is the linen suit with straw hat.
Yet another popular look is to dress like Robert Redford in the movie The Sting.
There is a very popular type of hat for men. I am not sure what the name of it is but I like the style.
If I were you, I would stay far away from the infield after 3:00PM. By that time people are very drunk. People walk around selling beer. They also walk around selling mint juleps.
The bourbon in the juleps is probably what makes them so mean. People down here call bourbon 'the beast' because they think if you drink a lot of it you become a mean drunk as opposed to drinking a similar amount of beer.
The last time I walked through the infield was 3:00 PM and it was getting weird. I saw 2 fights and everyone was extremely surly. There was also a mud fight.
I spent most of my time by a TV outside the betting windows.
I would place a $2 bet and watch the race.
I bet on Big Brown to show and won $4.80 on my $2 bet.
It was a very enjoyable day!
"If life had taken me in a different direction I might have been stuck in the infield."
- Bo Derek, 5/3/2008
Just for completeness sake, I must inform the readers that I did not drink a single drop of alcohol at the Derby because I did not have a driver.