Race May 6
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (April 6, 2017) — The solid gold 2017 Kentucky Derby Winner’s Trophy arrived at Churchill Downs Racetrack on Wednesday.
The 14-karat gold trophy will be kept at Kentucky Derby Museum, located adjacent to the racetrack, until the running of the Kentucky Derby on May 6. The prize will make a round of public appearances prior to the running of the Kentucky Derby, after which it will be presented to the owner of the 3-year-old Thoroughbred that wins the famed race known as the “Run for the Roses.”
The current design was commissioned by Churchill Downs President Col. Matt Winn in 1924 for that year’s 50th, or Golden Anniversary, running of the Kentucky Derby.
The trophy – a cup fashioned from 14-karat gold and green gold – stands 22 inches tall and weighs approximately 65 ounces, excluding its jade base. It is topped by a 14-karat gold horse and rider and features a pair of horseshoe-shaped wreath handles. The gold cup is adorned by a 14-karat gold horseshoe that, in accordance with Thoroughbred racing tradition, points upward. Racing legend holds that the “luck will run out” of a horseshoe that points downward.
The trophy’s design took on added features for the 75th (1949), 100th (1974) and 125th(1999) renewals of the Kentucky Derby. Each of those trophies included a mantle of “roses” fashioned from rubies and emeralds, along with a horseshoe filled with diamonds. Similar additions are planned for the trophy of the 150th running of the Kentucky Derby in 2024.