Churchill Downs Racetrack, home of the Kentucky Derby, has detailed plans for a range of fan-focused enhancements in the lead-up to the 150th staging of the race next year.
A number of celebrations and fan experiences will be revealed in the months leading up to next year’s race, with new guest experiences and ticket offerings among the plans announced yesterday (Wednesday).
The guest experiences will create added amenities to enhance the experience for nearly every guest at the racecourse. Improvements will include new views of the Twin Spires, more social areas and exclusive behind-the-scenes opportunities.
The main feature is the full redevelopment and the new design of the Paddock renovation, details of which were first announced in July 2021. The renovation will more than double the size of the walking ring for horses, add around 3,600 new seats and 3,250 standing-room tickets, and deliver new premium club spaces, dining tables and rail boxes.
Two new luxury dining clubs and an outdoor luxury dining experience will also debut during next year’s event. The Woodford Reserve Paddock Club and Paddock Club Enclosure will include special paddock access through a private tunnel, a curated dining experience, a dedicated concierge team, a private betting space, and trackside race viewing.
The 1895 Club and 1895 Enclosure will be located on the west side of the paddock runway and will focus on a behind-the-scenes equine experience with a view of the paddock runway and saddling stalls. For the first time, Churchill Downs will also have an outdoor luxury dining experience with a dedicated concierge team and a curated dining experience nestled under the Twin Spires, which includes a 360-degree view of the racetrack and paddock.
Other features include new premium covered outdoor dining offerings, which will add more than 2,600 dining seats and three outdoor balcony experiences. Churchill Downs is also announcing the chance for fans to win a ‘Derby of a Lifetime’ experience, which will include VIP tickets and a hotel stay.
Churchill Downs has launched a new website and logo for the 150th Kentucky Derby. The plans have been announced ahead of the 149th edition of the event on May 6.
Mike Anderson, president of Churchill Downs Racetrack, said: “150 years of tradition, hospitality and the best horse racing in the world takes centre stage as the Kentucky Derby celebrates an extraordinary achievement.
“To honour the significance of the anniversary, the rich history of the Derby and its place in our culture, we are excited to unveil new and enhanced guest experiences for decades to come.”