Churchill Brings on SAP as an Official Signature Partner for Derby

Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI) has entered a multi-year agreement naming SAP America, Inc. (SAP), a global market leader in enterprise application software, an official signature partner of Churchill Downs Racetrack, CDI said in a release Thursday. SAP is the first official technology partner of Churchill, as well as of the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks. The agreement includes naming rights within Churchill and use of SAP technology solutions. "We are thrilled to welcome SAP as a signature partner of Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby," said Bill Mudd, President and...

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Dana Stead Named Equine Safety and Integrity Veterinarian

Dr. Dana Stead, DVM, has been named Equine Safety and Integrity Veterinarian, according to Churchill Downs Wednesday. In this role, Stead will provide veterinarian support and oversight at all CDI-owned racetracks including at Churchill Downs. Stead joins CDI's Equine Medical Director Dr. William Farmer, DVM, supporting equine safety at the Company's Thoroughbred and Standardbred racetracks across the U.S. Stead will begin his new role on Feb. 5. "I look forward to working together with the horsemen and women across all of CDI's properties and am dedicated to promoting and ensuring...

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Kentucky Derby Purse Raised By Churchill Downs To Record $5 Million, 50-Race Stakes Schedule Cumulatively Worth $25.6 Million

The 150th GI Kentucky Derby scheduled for Saturday, May 4 will be the richest in history as the purse for America's greatest race has been elevated to a guaranteed $5 million, Churchill Downs Inc. (CDI) said in a release Wednesday. The $2 million increase to the race highlights a record-setting, 50-race stakes schedule cumulatively worth $25.6 million for Churchill Downs' 2024 Spring Meet, which will be run over 43 dates from April 27-June 30/ The Derby purse structure was the subject of a Chris McGrath TDN interview with John Sikura,...

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CDI To Open Six Race And Sports Books At Kentucky Properties Sept. 7

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) has approved temporary licenses for six Churchill Downs Inc. (CDI) properties to begin accepting in-person sports wagers on Thursday, Sept. 7, the company said via a release Wednesday morning. CDI will operate Race and Sports Books at its racetracks and Historical Racing Machine (HRM) facilities in Kentucky which include: Churchill Downs Racetrack: 15 sports betting kiosks, 168 sq. ft. video screen, 20 large format televisions; Derby City Gaming & Hotel: 15 sports betting kiosks, 300 sq. ft. video screen, 12 large format televisions; Ellis...

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Churchill to Renovate Jockey Club Suites Before 2024 Derby

Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI) will "update and refresh" the Jockey Club Suites at the Louisville oval in a $14-million renovation, the company announced late Wednesday. The modernization project will be finished prior to the 2024 Kentucky Derby. "The Jockey Club Suites are a core premium hospitality product," said Churchill President Mike Anderson. "This renovation project will ensure existing and future suite holders are provided the entertainment experience Churchill Downs is known for and our guests have come to expect for Kentucky Derby Week and all other racing events." All 61...

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Dismissal in Bettors-vs.-Baffert Lawsuit Could Impact Similar Case

A federal judge in Kentucky has dismissed the class-action lawsuit against trainer Bob Baffert and Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI), that was initiated by a group of horseplayers who alleged negligence, breach of contract, and unjust enrichment because their losing pari-mutuel bets on the 2021 GI Kentucky Derby weren't honored as winners after Medina Spirit (Protonico) tested positive for and was subsequently disqualified for a betamethasone overage. The July 20 order tossing the case out of United States District Court, Western District of Kentucky (Louisville Division), could have ramifications on a...

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Churchill Downs Reinstates Saffie Joseph, Jr.

After suspending trainer Saffie Joseph, Jr. indefinitely just two days prior to the GI Kentucky Derby and ordering scratched his trainee Lord Miles (Curlin) from the Derby itself, Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) has reinstated Joseph and will allow him to enter horses again at all CDI-affiliated tracks. Two of Joseph's horses, Parents Pride (Maclean's Music) and Chasing Artie (We Miss Artie)--both owned by Ken Ramsey--had died at Churchill during Derby week from sudden-death events. A total of 12 horses had passed away over a five-week span at Churchill, prompting the...

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CDI Releases Statement Regarding Baffert Lawsuit

Following a summary judgment issued by a federal judge Wednesday that dismissed Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert's lone remaining claim in his lawsuit against Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI), Churchill Downs issued a statement on Thursday. The statement appears in its entirety below. "Churchill Downs is pleased that the Court granted our Motion for Summary Judgement in the Civil Action brought against our company, CEO and Board Chairman by Bob Baffert, resolving in our favor the last remaining claim, just as the Court had ruled in our favor on all...

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Judge Dismisses Baffert's Lone Remaining Claim Against CDI

A federal judge on Wednesday issued a summary judgment that dismissed trainer Bob Baffert's lone remaining claim in his 15-month-old lawsuit against Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI). The order was handed down three months after the same judge tossed out five other counts in the case that alleged civil rights violations related to the gaming corporation's two-year banishment of the Hall-of-Fame trainer. "The Court denied Plaintiffs motion for a preliminary injunction and dismissed Plaintiffs' claims for unlawful exclusion, unlawful conspiracy in restraint of trade, unlawful use of monopoly power, tortious interference...

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White Abarrio Removed From Saffie Joseph's Barn by C2 Racing; Heads to Dutrow

White Abarrio (Race Day) has been taken away from trainer Saffie Joseph Jr. after his suspension by Churchill Downs during a week when two of his horses died from unexplained causes at the Louisville track, according to a Tweet posted by White Abarrio's owners, C2 Racing Stable. He was scheduled to arrive at his new trainer Rick Dutrow's barn at Belmont on Tuesday. Parents Pride (Maclean's Music) and Chasing Artie (We Miss Artie), both owned by Ken Ramsey and trained by Joseph, collapsed and died April 29 and May 2, respectively. Parents...

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Baffert Denied Injunction To Race in Derby; CDI Prevails In 5 of 6 Counts for Dismissal

A federal judge on Friday denied Bob Baffert a preliminary injunction that the Hall of Fame trainer had sought to be eligible to race in this year's GI Kentucky Derby. Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI), the defendant in Baffert's year-old lawsuit, also scored a legal victory when Judge Rebecca Jennings of United States District Court (Western District of Kentucky) granted the gaming corporation's motion to dismiss the case on five of the six counts that CDI had argued. Baffert was attempting to reverse the second year of a two-year ban by...

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Baffert Wants Federal Judge Removed from Case Against CDI

Trainer Bob Baffert now wants the federal judge handling his year-old lawsuit against Churchill Downs, Inc. (CDI), to recuse herself. The stated reason is that legislative lobbying efforts conducted by the judge's husband for two racing industry clients allegedly create a conflict of interest for Judge Rebecca Jennings in adjudicating Baffert's case. Baffert is attempting to reverse the second year of a two-year ban by CDI that prohibits his trainees from accruing qualifying points and competing in the 2023 GI Kentucky Derby. CDI first imposed that punishment in June 2021...

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