Hold on to your (Derby) hats, y'all.
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145th Kentucky Derby
Credit: Rob Carr / Staff/Getty Images

At this point, this may not be a complete surprise, but Churchill Downs announced today that the 146th Kentucky Derby would now be on September 5, 2020. The original date was May 2, but as the coronavirus situation continues to grind our country to a halt, the latest reported information suggests that we may be dealing with this longer than a few weeks.

Churchill Downs released a statement with details but did say that the new date was subject to approval from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. Their decision is expected March 19. Also in this release, we heard from Churchill Downs Incorporated CEO, Bill Carstanjen, who said “Throughout the rapid development of the COVID-19 pandemic, our first priority has been how to best protect the safety and health of our guests, team members and community. As the situation evolved, we steadily made all necessary operational adjustments to provide the safest experience and environment. The most recent developments have led us to make some very difficult, but we believe, necessary decisions and our hearts are with those who have been or continue to be affected by this pandemic.”

Carstanjen insisted that though run at a later date, they were committed to “holding the very best Kentucky Derby ever and certainly the most unique in any of our lifetimes. While we are always respectful of the time-honored traditions of the Kentucky Derby, our Company’s true legacy is one of resilience, the embracing of change and unshakeable resolve."

It's often referred to as “the most exciting two minutes in sports,” but it looks like we’ll have to wait for this year’s run for the roses. More time to pick out your derby hat and perfect your mint julep recipe. Both of these sound like pretty good ideas for this period of social distancing.

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For those who planned to attend, your tickets are automatically now valid for the new date.