Temporary structures will accommodate an additional 10,000 fans
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 9, 2015) — Keeneland’s preparations for the Breeders’ Cup, from Oct. 30-31, are entering the home stretch as construction of the luxury chalets and Grandstand Loge Boxes and refurbishing of the Training Track near completion.
The temporary structures, which include two Trackside Chalets, two Club Lawn Chalets, the Maker’s Mark Bourbon Lounge, Saddling Paddock Chalet, Breakfast Marquee and Grandstand Loge Boxes, will accommodate an additional 10,000 fans for the Breeders’ Cup.
Seating in one of the Club Lawn Chalets and all Loge Boxes will be available to the public during the upcoming Fall Meet, Oct. 2-24. Additionally, the Saddling Paddock Chalet will be open to fans Oct. 2-3.
“We’re beginning the final countdown now to Fall Meet and Breeders’ Cup and the energy around the grounds is palpable,” Keeneland president and CEO Bill Thomason said. “The look and feel of Keeneland as we head into fall is truly something special.”
On Prelude to the Cup Day on Oct. 29 the Bourbon Lounge will be the site of Champions for Charity, a ticketed event hosted by the Breeders’ Cup and Maker’s Mark that aims to raise $1 million for Breeders’ Cup charities.
Construction of the Club Lawn Chalets, located adjacent to the Clubhouse near the top of the stretch, continues at a brisk pace. The two facilities will offer seating and dining for approximately 500 guests daily for Prelude to the Cup and the Breeders’ Cup.
The Maker’s Mark Bourbon Lounge and Club Lawn Chalets are part of a village of five luxury chalets that includes a three-story Trackside Chalet, the first triple-decker structure of its kind to be used at a sporting event in North America. Together the three-story Trackside Chalet and adjoining two-story Trackside Chalet on the Clubhouse turn will house a total of 35 private suites with sweeping views of the race track.
Other projects are:
- Construction of 217 tiered Loge Boxes, which seat six and sit just below the permanent Grandstand boxes.
- Installation of roof and wall enclosures, doors and viewing balconies on the trackside Breakfast Marquee that will host Breeders’ Cup participants and VIPs each morning of Breeders’ Cup Week. The structure, located between the north end of the Grandstand and the Racing Office, will house the Breeders’ Cup offices on its first floor.
- Completion of the exterior of the Saddling Paddock Chalet, which seats 547 people and runs the entire length of the Saddling Paddock, has allowed crews to begin work on the interior of the facility. Seating and dining in the Saddling Paddock Chalet will be available to the public opening Friday and Saturday of the Fall Meet, Oct. 2-3.
- Enlarging of the horse path in front of the stone saddling stalls at the north end of the Saddling Paddock has been completed and an additional saddling ring was created. Both paths feature rubber pavers.
- Transplanting of four mature oak trees in the Saddling Paddock. The largest tree stands nearly 40 feet tall and weighs 30,000 pounds. The Paddock also was re-sodded.
- Renovation of the Polytrack surface on the five-furlong Training Track is complete. The old Polytrack surface was removed and maintenance performed on the asphalt base and existing drainage system during the summer. The Training Track was re-surfaced with Polytrack re-purposed from the chutes of Keeneland’s main track. The track re-opened for training on Sept. 8.
- The barns on Rice Road, where the Breeders’ Cup horses will be stabled, are being equipped with new data and wireless systems, and
- The Paddock Garden surrounding the Paddock area has been repaved.