LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 24, 2014) — For the first time in its history, Keeneland Race Course in Lexington will host the Breeders’ Cup, one of Thoroughbred racing’s most prestigious international events.
The two-day event will be Oct. 30-31, 2015, just prior to the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale. The Breeders’ Cup will not disrupt the sale, said Keeneland President and CEO Bill Thomason, but it will “enhance it.”
In preparation for one of the biggest events in horse racing, more than 7,000 premium seats will be added to the current Keeneland seating capacity, including new box seats, dining and hospitality areas.
“New premium seating will allow Breeders’ Cup and Keeneland to provide an exceptional fan experience and showcase Keeneland at its best,” the Lexington race course said in its fact sheet about the event.
Seating also will be available in a 35-by-50-feet South Lawn Tent with glass walls and doors, and in multiple South Parking Lot double decker tents with individual suites for trackside viewing.
The total reserved seating capacity will be 21,000, including seating in the Sales Pavillion and Entertainment Center. General admission tickets will be available, and The Hill and The Meadow will be open.
Keeneland is currently converting its main trace track from a synthetic Polytrack material to a state-of-the-art dirt surface, with a drainage system that will be the first of its kind in North America. Construction is scheduled to be completed Aug. 15. The track will reopen for training Sept. 1, and Keeneland’s Fall Meet begins Oct. 3.
This year’s race, the 31st running of the Breeders’ Cup, is Friday, Oct. 31 and Saturday, Nov. 1 at Santa Anita. This will be the eighth time that Santa Anita will host the Breeders’ Cup.
In 2016, the Breeders’ Cup will return to Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif., and in 2017, it will be held at Del Mar, near San Diego, Calif.