2019 Kentucky Oaks Weather Updates: Track Firming Up Despite Heavy Morning Rain

2019 Kentucky Oaks Weather Updates: Track Firming Up Despite Heavy Morning Rain article feature image

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

  • Need Kentucky Oaks weather updates? As of 10 a.m. ET, 1.19 inches of rain had fallen in Louisville, making it the second-wettest Oaks ever.
  • The brunt of the rain has left the area, though there is still a slight chance of a shower for the rest of the day.
  • Despite the heavy morning rains, the track has started to dry out and was announced as firm following race #4.

While the race on everyone’s minds won’t happen until tomorrow, there’s a full slate of horse racing at Churchill downs today, highlighted by the running of the Kentucky Oaks shortly after 6 p.m. ET.

While it serves as an appetizer for casual horse bettors preparing for tomorrow, it also gives us a glimpse at the track — which will be sloppy today and likely tomorrow, as well.

2019 Kentucky Oaks Weather Updates

2 p.m. ET Update:  Despite over an inch of rain in the morning, the track is surprisingly firming up. The sun, which was not expected to make an appearance, has also started peeking out. Both the turf and dirt tracks were announced as firm over the PA system after the 4th race per Sean Zerillo. The track condition was also upgraded from “mud” to “good” on the New York Racing Association app.

10 a.m. ET Update: The heavy stuff has been coming down in Louisville all morning, with 1.19 inches coming down as of 10 a.m. ET.  For those unaware, an inch of rain is a quite a bit. This ranks as the third-wettest Oaks ever, trailing the 1.4 inches back in 1961.

However, neither of these marks come close to the drenching Churchill Downs saw last year on the afternoon of the Kentucky Derby. In the 24 hours leading up to the derby, an insane 3.15″ of rain fell in Louisville, including 2.85″ that afternoon. That made it the wettest Derby in history.

The rain is getting lighter and should be mostly out of the area by noon, but it will have made its mark. There’s still a chance of an isolated shower or thunderstorm the rest of the day, but even if there isn’t, the track is going to stay sloppy.

Temperatures will reach the upper 70s, but the sun doesn’t look like it’s going to make an appearance all day. This will make the drying process a touch more difficult, as well as the fact that there will be 10 other races leading up to the Oaks. These horses will be mucking it up throughout the day, keeping the track nice and sloppy.

Unless there’s another soaking cell that hits the Downs during the afternoon, the track shouldn’t be an absolute slop-show like it was for the Derby last year, but it will be quite muddy at the very least.