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Churchill Downs Launches Official 2009 Kentucky Derby Web Site

| Churchill Downs Communications | 01/13/2009 #

Churchill Downs has launched the official Web site for the 2009 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands, www.kentuckyderby.com, which will offer unparalleled coverage of the horse racing season leading up to the 135th running of the Kentucky Derby on May 2, 2009. [asset|height=12|width=1] Employing advanced Web technology, the site serves as an all-inclusive online resource for the entire Kentucky Derby experience, from in-depth contender information to full-scale treatment of the lavish entertainment and party atmosphere that surrounds the historic event.

“Kentuckyderby.com brings together all the different elements of the Kentucky Derby experience into one user-friendly site,” said Jeremy Borseth, senior director of channel services and Internet operations for Churchill Downs Incorporated.  “It pays tribute to the time-honored traditions and pageantry of the ‘Run for the Roses,’ while at the same time reflecting the latest online technology to help fans stay informed.  Whether you’re a passionate racing fan, a Derby party host, or a newcomer attracted to the Kentucky Derby scene, you’ll find everything you need at Kentuckyderby.com, including how to buy tickets, where to go, and what to see in Louisville.”

Among the new components of the official Kentucky Derby 135 Web site is an expanded lifestyle and entertainment section, which includes Red Carpet and Derby celebrity photo galleries, information on the official Kentucky Derby Party program, and insider’s peeks at Millionaires Row and the boisterous infield.  Kentuckyderby.com will also serve as the online home for an exciting array of Kentucky Derby 135 events and programs, which will be unveiled in the weeks ahead.

A focal point of the 2009 Kentucky Derby Web site remains the “contenders” pages, which include videos, photographs, detailed pedigree analyses, workout information, and past performances.  These pages are supplemented by an area dedicated to Kentucky Derby prep races, which provides complete previews and recaps of every major prep race on the Kentucky Derby trail, including video replays, video analysis by Churchill Downs experts, past performance charts, official results, and stakes recaps.  The site also contains exclusive analysis videos and interviews, as well as comprehensive historical archives of past runnings of the Kentucky Derby.

A user-friendly navigation bar near the top of the Kentucky Derby site home page provides quick links to Kentucky Derby and Oaks ticketing information, a summary of Derby history and traditions, and a link to the official online Kentucky Derby Store, located at www.kentuckyderby.com/store, where fans may purchase officially licensed Kentucky Derby 135 apparel and souvenirs.

One popular item returning in 2009 is a suite of advanced interactive online tools that link visitors to Kentucky Derby content available through YouTube, Facebook, and other popular social networking platforms.  The site will offer weekly video podcasts, also available through Apple’s iTunes and YouTube, to provide the latest information on all major Kentucky Derby prep races and contenders.  From the site’s download section, fans may also enjoy free access to wallpaper, ringtones, and a host of other Derby-themed applications.

John Asher, who serves as vice president of racing communications for Churchill Downs, will be joined by Churchill Downs analyst Jill Byrne and expert handicapper James Scully as racing analysts in place for the 2009 Kentucky Derby Web site.  Bloodstock Research Information Services, an industry-leading data services company owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated, is providing news content and pedigree information.  The site also features blogs by Justin Dew, who will analyze the racing and wagering aspects of the Kentucky Derby, and Caroline Smith, who will focus on the fashion and entertainment scene of Kentucky Derby 135.

The official Web site for the 135th running of the Kentucky Oaks, www.kentuckyoaks.com, is expected to launch in March 2009.

Kentuckyderby.com is the official Web site of the Kentucky Derby and is owned and operated by Churchill Downs Incorporated. As one of the world’s premier sporting events and the first leg of horse racing’s Triple Crown, the Kentucky Derby traditionally takes place on the first Saturday in May. The 135th running of this celebrated event is scheduled for May 2, 2009, at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky.  Approximately 150,000 people attend the Kentucky Derby in person, with more than 20 million people tuning in via television and radio worldwide.

Churchill Downs, the world’s most legendary racetrack, has conducted Thoroughbred racing and presented America’s greatest race, the Kentucky Derby, continuously since 1875.  Located in Louisville, the flagship racetrack of Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN) also operates Trackside at Churchill Downs, which offers year-round simulcast wagering at the historic track.  Churchill Downs will conduct the 135th running of the Kentucky Derby on May 2, 2009.  The track’s 2009 Spring Meet will take place from April 25 through July 5.  Churchill Downs is scheduled to host the Breeders’ Cup World Championships for a record seventh time on November 5 and 6, 2010.  Information about Churchill Downs can be found on the Internet at www.churchilldowns.com.