HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (KAIT) - COVID-19 concerns have changed the calendar in every sport imaginable, and horse racing is no exception.
Oaklawn announced Friday that they’re moving the Arkansas Derby from April 11th to May 2nd. The first Saturday in May is usually reserved for the Kentucky Derby, but Churchill Downs postponed the run for the roses to September.
Oaklawn President Louis Cella said the following in a statement: “Churchill Downs understands the circumstances created by the current health crisis, and, therefore, will allow the full 170 points towards Kentucky Derby eligibility (now scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 5) as long as we meet the minimum purse threshold of $750,000. The purse reductions are across the board. If operations return to normal between now and May, we will adjust them accordingly.”