Kevin Krigger and the Sport of Kings
April 17, 2013 9:53 AM Subscribe
"Black jockeys once dominated the Kentucky Derby, winning 15 of the first 28 titles between 1875 and 1902. They were former slaves and their sons – a vestige of colonial times, when planters owned both horses and riders. Post–Civil War, they were the country's best riders, but the narrow window opened by Reconstruction was slammed shut by Jim Crow. Even in Northern cities, white jockeys and officials ran black riders off the track, whitewashing their legacy. Churchill Downs was completely segregated throughout the 1950s. On May 4, 29-year-old jockey Kevin Krigger looks to reverse that history at Churchill Downs, riding Goldencents, an early top-10 favorite trained by Doug O'Neill (who trained last year's winner). Krigger is just the second black jockey to compete in the Derby since 1921, and the first from the U.S. Virgin Islands." Via Men's Journal
Kentucky Derby's page on the history of African-Americans in the sport. More from Smithsonian Magazine. More on Krigger. ESPN podcast on Krigger. San Francisco Chronicle article on Krigger.
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