Horse racing is still happening in some places despite the sports world largely on pause due to COVID-19, but racing’s biggest events — the three that make up the Triple Crown — will not go on as scheduled. The Kentucky Derby is scheduled to run on the first Saturday in September, not the first Saturday in May. But in its place on Saturday ran a virtual Derby consisting of 13 horses that went on to win the Triple Crown.
That race aired on NBC Saturday, with Secretariat unsurprisingly taking the digital crown.
Watch it again! The 13 Triple Crown winners face off in a virtual race under the Twin Spires of Churchill Downs.
— Kentucky Derby (@KentuckyDerby) May 2, 2020
Unlike iRacing, in which pro drivers are tackling a virtual version of digitally-mapped NASCAR tracks in real time, this virtual Kentucky Derby is largely simulations based on data algorithms and handicapping information to make a historical comparison between the horses. It was also a great way to keep tradition alive in a time where hosting a Derby in a packed Churchill Downs is simply impossible.
“The Kentucky Derby: Triple Crown Showdown” will follow the broadcast of the 2015 Kentucky Derby. The virtual race will be using data algorithms and historical handicapping information about each horse to determine the probability of each of their potential finishing positions.
Here are the full race results, if you need them.
Kentucky Derby Results:
— Robby Kalland (@RKalland) May 2, 2020
Congratulations to Secretariat, who just can’t stop winning even though he died in 1989.