Hold onto your hat, brush off your nice britches, and grab a Mint Julep: The Kentucky Derby isn’t completely canceled yet — not all versions of the race, at least.
On Thursday morning, Old Forester announced via Twitter that in lieu of the postponed Kentucky Derby (originally slated for this Saturday), the distiller will be reviving a tradition that hasn’t been seen since 1945: The Kentucky Turtle Derby.
Back in 1945, the Kentucky Derby was postponed on account of World War II, during a temporary ban on horse racing. A group of sports reporters were brainstorming ideas for the annual Sports-For-Polio Fund, and the idea for a turtle race was born.
Credit: Lexington Herald Leader
On Saturday night, Old Forester, which typically provides the Mint Juleps served at the Kentucky Derby, is pooling its resources to revive the turtle race. The competition will take place at 7 p.m. EST and can be accessed on Old Forester’s YouTube page.
Those who plan to tune in can place pre-race “bets” on the eight elite competing turtles. The wagers will serve as donations, going to the Hospitality Industry Emergency Relief Fund in order to help unemployed hospitality workers. Brown-Forman, the parent company of Old Forester will be matching these donations all the way up to $100,000.
With so many sports and entertainment cancellations, there’s never been a better time to watch the “slowest two minutes in sports.”