Estimate New All-Time Record Derby Day Crowd: Duke and Duchess of Windsor in Attendance for Racing Classic, Daily Racing Form, 1951-05-07


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♦ - M mk mm W 9 Hk and* """% m 9 nk 9 I % 9 m. I * ,:-- 9 ; J. J. AMI EL— New Yorkers Count Turf carried off the coveted Roses at the Churchill Downs course on Saturday. ! i 7 t - 5 lt 3 - s Estimate New Ail-Time Record Derby Day Crowd Duke and Duchess of Windsor in ~ Attendance for Racing * Classic . By OSCAR OTIS CHURCHILL DOWNS, Louisville, Ky., May 5. — An estimated all-time record crowd d stormed ancient Churchill Downs today as s tens of thousands jammed highways and cj streets to witness the seventy-seventh running _ of the Kentucky Derby. The track crowd was only a part of the e Derby color, and when the people got onto o the grounds, they found bands playing, I, flags flying, and early arrivals milling g around as only race track crowds can mill. 1. Soldiers from nearby Fort Knox, and troops »s of the Kentucky militia, patroled the e grounds. Withal, it was an orderly crowd bent on seeing a Derby, and making the e most of the occasion. Celebrities were a "dime a dozen" but it nevertheless, the thousands of tourists took k time to eye them, and the celebrities, in n turn, gazed with something akin to await it the mighty assemblage. A crowd of several thousand was waiting g at the grandstand gates when they opened d at 8:00 oclock this morning, and made a a rush for the choice unreserved seats. The e infield started to fill up about 9:00, and by y post time for the first race, 11:30 a. m., an n estimated 5C.000 were on the grounds. At it noon, the clubhouse crowd began to arrive e , in force, while a steady stream of customers •s added to the bulging throngs in the infield. I. Usually, traffic to the Downs is speeded d to the utmost by the very efficient Louisville i- police force, but today, for some reason n not immediately clear, a jam developed on n Continued on Page Thirty-Six Estimate New All-Time Record Derby Day Crowd Duke and Duchess of Windsor in i Attendance for Racing Classic Continued from Page One one of the main routes to the track gates, and Downs officials reported that traffic was blocked as far away as the bridge over the Ohio River leading to New Albany and Jeffersonville. Officers untangled the snarl as best they could, and although many of the Derby fans arrived later than they had intended, they got here on time to see the Derby itself. 1 The three bands alternating with stir- j ring tunes in the infield were the Fort , Knox Military, the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville. The mili- l tary unit is known as the 158th Army band, is of 31 pieces, and has been a part t of the Derby pageant for the last several years. It is under the direction of Warrant z Officer Russell O. Christian, of San An- e tonio, Texas. The honor guard of the military were 1 commanded by Lt. Colonel Leon K. Kur- i land, of Brooklyn, a combat veteran of 1 World War II. Most of the men in his t command were seasoned veterans, some t having seen action in Korea. t Directly in front of the "charmed circle," a hallowed ground reserved for the Derby j winner, and the Derby winner only, were g the brightly uniformed honor guard of Downs employes. Their uniforms, in con- I trast to the olive drab of the Army, added r to the color of the spectacle. The U. S. t Marines were represented with its men in t dress blues. i The Derby weather was absolutely ideal, c The morning dawned clear and brisk, just I pleasantly cool. It clouded up some in the i afternoon, but no rain fell up until a late hour. The heavy showers of mid-afternoon t yesterday seemed to clear the air, and i helped the track, if anything. r By far and away the most distinguished 1 visitors were the Duke and Duchess of r Windsor, who arrived in Louisville yester- c day aboard a private car of the Chesapeake c and Ohio Railroad. The Royal couple were s 1 j , l t z e 1 i 1 t t t j g I r t t i c I i t i r 1 r c c s the guests of Robert R. Young, president of the C. and O. line. The special car was parked in the Louisville yards. There was a remarkable lack of pomp and ceremony accompanying their arrival. The American-born Duchess crowned the winner of the Debutante Stakes, and was, as might be imagined, the center of all eyes, not to mention hundreds of cameras. The Duke and Duchess watched the Derby running from Box 189, in the front row of boxes on the upper tier of the clubhouse and about a third of a furlong to the left of the finish line. After the Derby, the Duke and his entourage returned to their private car and left for White Sulphur Springs, W. Va., where it is understood the Duke will indulge in a bit of golfing. Bill Corum, president of Churchill . Downs, watched the race from the most revered box on the track, that dedicated to the memory of Matt J. Winn, who lifted the Kentucky Derby from "just another race" to the most famous three-year-old classic on the continent, and, next to the English Derby, perhaps the best known race in all the world. The vast crowd started to disperse after the Derby, too. The people started streaming out of the gates as soon as the Derby result became known, and perharps 25,000 had made their departure before the last race. The Downs grounds are usually cleared of all but a few stragglers by 8:00 oclock in the evening, a tribute to the speed of modern mass transportation.

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