Churchill Downs Conducts First-Ever Public Drawing for Reserved Seats to 2007 Kentucky Derby

Churchill Downs made Kentucky Derby dreams come true this morning for 500 racing fans, who braved rain and unseasonably cold temperatures to participate in the first-ever public drawing for reserved seats to the 133rd "Run for the Roses" on May 5, 2007.

An estimated crowd of 500 had already formed well before dawn on Saturday, despite heavy rains and temperatures in the upper 30s. After gates opened at 5 a.m., fans were allowed to line up inside the Churchill Downs ITW area and the Gate 17 lobby, and were treated to free coffee and doughnuts. A rousing round of applause greeted the arrival of the Kentucky Derby tickets at 7:45 a.m., delivered by UPS workforce planning manager Patrick O'Leary.

"I've had people happy to see me and happy to get their packages, but this is the first time I've ever been greeted with applause," O'Leary said.

Customers began drawing for their seating selections promptly at 8 a.m., beginning with Sean Byrd from Louisville, who arrived at noon on Friday to be first in line. "It was worth the wait" he said afterwards. "I'm going to the Kentucky Derby, but right now, face, I'm going home and going to bed."

Through the public drawing, Churchill Downs offered a total of 1,000 reserved seats, which were sold in pairs of two for a total of 500 pairs. All were located in prime viewing locations throughout the first-floor clubhouse and grandstand. Ticket prices ranged from $206 to $360 per pair of seats, depending on the location.

Although many of the fans were from Louisville and surrounding areas, others hailed from Elizabethtown, Ky.; Paducah, Ky.; Indianapolis; Dayton, Ohio; and as far away as Maine.

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: CHDN) also operates Trackside at Churchill Downs, which offers year-round simulcast wagering at the historic track. Churchill Downs will conduct the 133rd running of the Kentucky Derby on May 5, 2007. The track's 2007 Spring Meet is scheduled for April 28 through July 8. Churchill Downs has served as host to the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships a record six times. Information about Churchill Downs can be found on the Internet at