Pandemic ends 72-year Kentucky Derby streak


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WLEX/NBC News) — The coronavirus pandemic has brought an end to an incredible streak for one Kentucky Derby superfan. 

Phillip Perkins attended his first Kentucky Derby in 1948 when he was 12 years old, and has been in the stands for every Derby since.  That’s 72 races for the now 84-year-old Perkins.

No fans will be allowed at Saturday’s event due to COVID-19.

“This year would make the 146th Kentucky Derby, if I made it this year that would be 73 for me — exactly one half of them,” Perkins said, heartbroken about breaking his streak.

He says he will watch this year’s Kentucky Derby from someplace he has never watched it before – his living room.

NBC’s coverage of the 146th Kentucky Derby begins at 1:30 p.m. (CDT) Saturday. Post time is set for approximately 6:01 p.m. (CDT).

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