Derby stands the test of time

The 50th running of the West Virginia Derby is set for this afternoon at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort, and it is sure to be a success.

The biggest and richest horse race in the state has always been a big draw, and continues to attract visitors from all parts of the Tri-State Area and beyond.

It’s a Grade III race and features a purse of $500,000. The eighth race of a nine-race card which begins at 2 p.m., the derby will rank among the elite horse races contested today in the nation. And, it will show just how far the race has come since its first running on April 21, 1923, when the derby was held at Tri-State Fairgrounds near Barboursville. A gelding named Tender Seth claimed the first crown and collected a purse of $2,265.

It’s an event many of us can enjoy, whether we go to try to win some money or just watch the horses along with the tens of thousands who regularly turn out to participate in derby day activities.

The West Virginia Derby offers the chance chance to show off the facilities at Mountaineer and to shine a positive light on the Northern Panhandle and the Tri-State Area. It’s an event that has stood the test of time, and its continued success is a tribute to the men and women who work hard to bring quality entertainment to our region.