Churchill Downs Launches

Feb 09, 2010 Darren Rogers

Churchill Downs Incorporated (“CDI”) (NASDAQ: CHDN) has launched, the official Web site for the 136th running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands and definitive online resource for information about the Kentucky Derby experience.

The all-inclusive Web site, redesigned in conjunction with Texas-based FooCulture, features a clean, classy, condensed and easy-to-navigate homepage with quick links to user-friendly sections. The updated site is loaded with colorful imagery that pulls visitors in to the spectacle that is America’s original, extravagant, springtime sports party and well represents the many intriguing aspects of the Kentucky Derby brand.

“Whether you’re a casual sports fan, entertainment seeker or diehard horse racing enthusiast, is the ultimate online destination for the Kentucky Derby experience – and it’s the only Web site you need to visit for everything Derby related,” said Julie Koenig-Loignon, Churchill Downs Incorporated’s vice president of brand development and marketing. “We designed the site to blend  the rich history and time-honored traditions that Derby fans love about the ‘Run for the Roses’ with fresh, fun entertainment content that showcases the tremendous social experience wrapped around America’s greatest horse race.”

All-encompassing information about top Kentucky Derby prospects, important prep races and expert analysis is just a mouse click away in the “Contenders” area. Meanwhile, comprehensive Derby race histories as well as entertainment and lifestyle segments featuring updates on Derby fashions, signature cuisine, Red Carpet interviews and local celebrity parties can be found in the retooled “Derby Experience” section.
Additionally, there are areas devoted to breaking news and visitor information, plus easy-to-find e-commerce tabs for Kentucky Derby and Oaks tickets, official Derby photographs and merchandise and online wagering through There are handy links to Derby party planning tools, social networking channels, the “Road to the Roses” Derby fantasy game and home page links to local community and business partners that contribute to the entire Derby hospitality effort in Louisville, Ky.

Content will be added throughout the Derby season and integrated with video updates from veteran Churchill Downs’ racing analyst Jill Byrne and popular Louisville entertainment reporter Angie Fenton. Byrne will give fans a unique behind-the-scenes look at promising Kentucky Derby contenders and their jockeys, trainers and owners while also offering weekly previews of upcoming Derby prep races. Fenton will deliver entertaining reports on a broad range of topics, including Derby party-planning tips, fashion dos and don’ts and the latest dish on celebrities and the Derby party scene.

John Asher, Churchill Downs’ vice president of racing communications, will join Byrne and handicappers Kellie Reilly and James Scully of Bloodstock Research Information Services ( for expert analysis and opinion about Derby contenders, including Top 10 rankings. and the Churchill Downs communications department will team to provide breaking news updates.

Approximately 2.4 million unique users, including nearly one million unique visitors in the weeks surrounding the Kentucky Derby, visited in 2009.

Annually staged at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky. on the first Saturday in May, this year’s $2 million-guaranteed Kentucky Derby (Grade I) is scheduled for May 1. The 1 ¼-mile classic for 3-year-old Thoroughbreds – the first leg of horse racing’s famed Triple Crown series – was first run in 1875, which makes “The Run for the Roses” the oldest continuously held sporting event in North America. Approximately 150,000 people attend the Kentucky Derby in person with more than 20 million people tuning in via television and radio worldwide.

The companion Web site for the Derby’s sister race, the 136th running of the Kentucky Oaks for 3-year-old fillies, will launch the week of Feb. 15, while a new-and-improved, the official site for Kentucky Derby Party planning, will debut in early March.

    Churchill Downs Incorporated, (“CDI”), headquartered in Louisville, Ky., owns and operates four world renowned Thoroughbred racing facilities: Arlington Park in Illinois, Calder Casino and Race Course in Florida, Churchill Downs Race Track in Kentucky and Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots in Louisiana.  CDI operates slot and gaming operations in Louisiana and Florida.  CDI tracks are host to North America’s most prestigious races, including the Arlington Million, the Kentucky Derby and the Kentucky Oaks, the Louisiana Derby and the Princess Rooney, along with hosting the Breeders’ Cup World Championships for a record seventh time on Nov. 5-6, 2010.  CDI also owns off-track betting facilities, and other advance-deposit wagering channels, television production, telecommunications and racing service companies such as BRIS and a 50-percent interest in the national cable and satellite network, HorseRacing TV, which supports CDI’s network of simulcasting and racing operations.  CDI’s Entertainment Group produces the HullabaLOU Music Festival at Churchill Downs Racetrack which premieres on July 23-25, 2010.  CDI trades on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol CHDN and can be found at

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