Kentucky Derby: And The Winner Is . . .

It's the first Saturday in May, and that means one thing: the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky.

The Bob Baffert-trained Medina Spirit, who went off at 12-1 with John Velasquez up, led wire-to-wire to win the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby in a time of 2:01.02 before an announced crowd of 51,838.

It was Baffert's record seventh Derby victory as a trainer, and Velasquez's fourth victory as a jockey.

"If you have him on the lead, he’ll fight,” Baffert told NBC Sports’ Kenny Rice immediately after the thrilling victory. Even more amazing, Medina Spirit was originally purchased for a paltry $1,000.

Here are the official payouts, according to NBC Sports.

Covid-19 restrictions were relaxed somewhat, so there wasn't the full-blown mass of humanity we've come to expect, but the joint was far from empty. And some traditions have persevered.

As our Gary Sheffield Jr. detailed, despite an attempt by left-wing zealots to cancel it, the song "My Old Kentucky Home" was sung as always.

As Gary so eloquently put it: "It’s officially time for all major sports commissioners to take a stand and tell the easily offended to pound sand. Kick rock. Beat it. Not liking something because you watched a four-minute YouTube video made by some distraught loser doesn’t qualify you to promote change in this country."


And it wouldn't really be the Derby with the hats. Like this one:

and this one:

and um . . .

On Friday, fans who showed up for the Kentucky Oaks were surprised at how small the crowds were, because of Covid-19 restrictions.

"It is a little strange," Julie Smith told WLKY-TV. "When my friends and I walked out here onto the Paddock you know, typically you can't see anything in front of you except the person in front of you because there's such a crowd."

COVID-19 restrictions are only allowing for 40%-50% capacity and 60% capacity in certain private areas, the station reported.

Seeing smaller crowds this year isn't what Smith said she's used to but it's a step in the right direction for the tradition she -- and the rest of us -- hold dear.

Don't worry Julie, full crowds will be back soon enough.