Vintage photos show the glamour and style of the Kentucky Derby

Linda Medley, left, of Birmingham, Ala., and Joy Ostrowski of Cleveland sport their Derby headgear as they wait for the start of the Kentucky Derby in the paddock area at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., on Saturday, May 4, 1996. (AP Photo/Gail Kamenish)Women attend the 1996 Kentucky Derby.Gail Kamenish/AP

Since the races were first run in 1875, the Kentucky Derby has been drawing thousands of celebrities, politicians, and Louisville locals to the horse track at Churchill Downs.

Started by Louisville Jockey Club founder Meriwether Lewis Clark Jr., the sporting event has a long history tied to horse racing, mint juleps, and, of course, the famous Kentucky Derby hat.

As you prepare to watch the 143rd iteration of the big event Saturday, see an overview of the Derby’s history in photos.

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