Photo Essay

  • A woman carrying a hat case, a telltale sign she is going to the Derby, boards Delta Flight 6097, from New York, N.Y. to Louisville, Ky., May 2, 2014.
  • Two women look over racing sheets the night before the Kentucky Derby, May 2, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • A fan cheers for jockey Rosie Napravnik during the Kentucky Oaks race on the eve of the Kentucky Derby, May 2, 2014, in Louisville, Ky. In 2012, Napravnik became the first female jockey ever to win the Kentucky Oaks, and rode to victory again this year aboard Untapable.
  • Evan Topol, from San Diego, Calif., makes friends on the eve of the Kentucky Derby, May 2, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Spectators enjoy the eve of the Kentucky Derby, May 2, 2014 in Louisville, Ky..
  • Attendees enjoy a variety of drinks on the eve of the Kentucky Derby, May 2, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Calvin Borel celebrates after riding Moonshine Mullin to a win in the 11th running of The Alysheba race, May 2, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Jockey Rosie Napravnik after her victory in the Kentucky Oaks on May 2, 2014. Rosie is the only woman, competing against all male jockeys.
  • Jenna Day, Miss Kentucky 2013, having fun at The Julep Ball, May 2, 2013 in Louisville, Ky.
  • Morning at Churchill Downs as spectators watch the garland of roses arrive at the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, Ky. on May 3, 2014.
  • Derby fashion at Churchill Downs on May 2, 2013 in Louisville, KY.
  • Tami Purcell, from Knoxville, Tenn., shows off the hat she made at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014.
  • Morning at Churchill Downs as a fashion-forward fan arrives at the Kentucky Derby in Louisville on May 3, 2014.
  • Jose Castello, 83, took buses for three days from his home in Cerritos, Mexico, to be here for the Kentucky Derby on May 3, 2014. He is holding a photo that was made 34 years ago to the day at the Derby of a young Jose with his newborn son, Jose Castello, Jr. (born April 10, 1980). Jose met his wife, Ernestine, at a race track in Illinois called Arlington Park. Ernestine was selling coffee at the concession stand, and he was betting on the horses. "He bought a cup of coffee from me and then would not leave", said Ernestine. That was in 1974.
  • A horse pin is seen on the tie of a man's suit at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Security is tight at the Derby, as members of local police look on as Derby goers make their way to the infield, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Kendrick Brown, nicknamed Boogie because his mother said he loved to dance when he was little, has been parking cars at the Derby since he was 7 years old. Here, in the Oakdale neighborhood of Louisville's South End, not far from Gate 3 of Churchill Downs, Boogie tries to get a few more customers to pay $50 for the day on May 3, 2014. He hopes to entice about 15 cars for the day.
  • A group of Derby attendees dressed up as Where's Waldo partake in the festivities at Churchill Downs, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Nerlens Noel, an NBA player with the Philadelphia 76ers, surveys the sights at the Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Derby attendees wear matching flamingo hats, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • A little boy walks in the infield at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • A woman adjusts her hat in the infield suites at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • A woman's hat is seen in the paddock before the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, the 10th race of the day, at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Jockeys walk in the paddock before the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, the 10th race of the day, at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky. Kent DesOrmeaux, seen on the left, is a Hall of Fame jockey who has won the Derby three times. On the right is jockey Joel Rosario who won the Derby last year aboard Orb.
  • A woman holds up her Kim Kardashian iPhone case at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • An attendee scores the Derby fashion trifecta, wearing a hat, shirt, and bag all ready for the races, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • A woman walks in the paddock before the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Fans cheer and take pictures on their phones during the 140th Kentucky Derby race, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Steve Coburn (C), co-owner of this year's Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome, salutes the crowd after the end of the race, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • After the Kentucky Derby, this race fan, wearing a blazer with the insignia for California Chrome, scored some roses, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Jockey Johnny Velazquez, right, relaxes with his wife Leona in the family room after racing in the 140th Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • Hours before the final race and this guy has already tapped out, pictured in the infield at the Kentucky Derby, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
  • A woman walks on the track after the end of the 140th Kentucky Derby race, May 3, 2014, in Louisville, Ky.
/

Kentucky Derby: photos of the spectacle

Updated

The Kentucky Derby was held Saturday at Churchill Downs. It was the 140th running of the race, with 19 horses competing for a top prize of $2 million.

After a full day of events it was California Chrome, ridden by jockey Victor Espinoza, who took the top prize. They finished the 1 1/4 mile race in 2:03.66 and Art Sherman, Chrome’s 77 year-old trainer became the oldest trainer to win the Derby.

Last year, more than 150,000 people attended the race, which is known for its flamboyant fashion – most notably, the elaborate hats seen around the stands. Olympic figure skaters Johnny Weir and Tara Lipinski, whose commentary (and outfits) made them breakout stars during the Sochi Olympics, were on the scene as NBC’s fashion correspondents.  

Check out photographer Landon Nordeman’s pictures from the spectacle.

For more feature photography, go to msnbc.com/photography