The 10 Slowest Kentucky Derby® Winners

Posted by Evan Chronis on Fri, Sep 14, 2018 @ 09:37 AM

Horse racing is always evolving, and there's no better proof than to look at the increase in speed over time at the Kentucky Derby®. Thoroughbred horses have gotten stronger and faster over time, leading to more impressive sprint times as we've moved throughout the years. However, track conditions have also improved drastically over the last century. 

We've already looked at the fastest Kentucky Derby® winner times, but what about the slowest? What about the horses who won the Derby, but didn't go down in the history books? They deserve a spotlight, too, so we're giving it to them.

This list only account for winners since the track permanently moved to 1 1/4 miles. 

Crazy-Derby-Facts-Header (1)

Here are the 10 slowest Kentucky Derby® winners of all-time:

10. Worth, 1912

Time: 2:09.40

Worth took first place in the 38th running of the Kentucky Derby® by beating out six other horses with a time of 2:09.40. In part due to his success at Churchill Downs®, Worth was named the American Champion of three-year-olds in 1912.

9. Sir Barton, 1919

Time: 2:09.80

This is where my "didn't go down in the history books" comment really comes back to bite me. Sir Barton is paramount in the horse racing world for being the first steed to complete the Triple Crown™ by winning the Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes back-to-back-to-back. He was justifiably named the 1919 Horse of the Year, and is one of the most recognizable names in the sport.  

8. Reigh Count, 1928

Time: 2:10.40

Reigh Count is as well known for his racing career as he is for his time at stud. After winning the Kentucky Derby® as a three-year old, Reigh Count wrapped up his racing effort at four-years old and went on to sire 22 stakes winners. 

7. Agile, 1905

Time: 2:10.75

In a field of three, Agile came out on top. That's right — only three horses entered the 1905 Kentucky Derby® after two were scratched from the race, and Agile outraced Ram's Horn and Layson to take home the $4,850 purse. For 1905, that's a pretty good haul. 

T5. Clyde Van Dusen, 1929

Time: 2:10.80

Clyde Van Dusen is the most recent winner on our list, and his victory took place almost a century ago. I hope that tells you something. This steed conquered terrible weather in his triumph at the Kentucky Derby®, beating out the rest of the field by two full lengths.

T5. Exterminator, 1918

Time: 2:10.80

It's ironic that Clyde Van Dusen and Exterminator ran the exact same time at the Derby because both had to deal with difficult weather conditions to cross the finish line. Exterminator came in at 30-1 odds in the pouring rain, but was able to usurp the competition and win the sprint by a length. 

4. Manuel, 1899

Time: 2:12.00

Talk about bad luck. Manuel won the 1899 Derby after just being sold for $15,000, but then injured his leg badly after stepping in a hole on the track, forcing him to not race for the rest of the year. 

3. Typhoon II, 1897

Time: 2:12.50

Like for most horses, Typhoon II's Kentucky Derby® victory was the peak of his career. But it's not normal to see the complete drop off in quality that Typhoon II did after winning at Churchill Downs®. Typhoon II feel off the map competitively in his four-year old season, and promptly retired. 

2. Pink Star, 1907

Time: 2:12.60

The grandson of Leonatus, the 1983 Kentucky Derby® winner, Pink Star always had Derby success in his blood. The 1907 Derby was run in poor weather (a trend in this list), and saw Pink Star win the Race for the Roses as a heavy longshot. 

1. Stone Street, 1908

Time: 2:15.20

And finally we've arrived at the slowest Kentucky Derby® winner of all time at the current distance. This victory was Stone Street's only stakes win during his entire racing career, an anomaly for a steed that wins at Churchill Downs®. Stone Street's victory came thanks to a rainy day that left the other seven contenders stuck in the mud as Stone Street completed his only stakes conquest. 

Join Us at the 2019 Kentucky Derby®!

Be at Churchill Downs® for the 2019 Kentucky Derby® with Derby Experiences! Choose from any of our Derby Ticket Package offerings to ensure that you'll create lifelong memories at this year's Race for the Roses.

Take Me to the Derby!

Topics: Kentucky Derby 2019

Subscribe to Our Blog

About the Bloggers

Kristen Doolan

Kristen Doolan was born and raised a Florida State Seminole. Making her way from Florida to North Carolina, Kristen achieved her B.S. in Business Administration, Marketing at The University of North Carolina Wilmington. She is an avid traveler, college football addict, beach bum and loves spending time with her family and friends. 


Jazzy Morgan

Jazzy Morgan is originally from London, England and a die-hard Manchester United Fan. She grew up in Connecticut and made the move down south in 2011 where she attended Winthrop University and received her B.S. in Family & Consumer Sciences and a minor in Marketing. Jazzy enjoys traveling, working out, reading her monthly Vogue & Cosmo and keeping up with fashion trends.


Evan Chronis

Evan Chronis was born in Omaha, Nebraska but has made his home in south Charlotte for almost two decades. A Tar Heel born and bred, Evan received his B.A in Media and Journalism from UNC-Chapel Hill. He is an avid Boston sports fan thanks to his family’s New England roots, and a fanboy of Wes Anderson films.