LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018) – The official “Road to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve” will begin Saturday at the home of America’s greatest race as Churchill Downs stages the 37 th running of the Grade III, $150,000 Iroquois for 2 year-olds at 1 1/16 miles on opening weekend of its 11-day September Meet.

The “Road to the Kentucky Derby,” a series of select races that award a sliding scale of points to the Top 4 finishers, has determined preference for its 20-horse Kentucky Derby (Grade I) field since 2013. The 1 ¼-mile classic for 3-year-old Thoroughbreds will be run at the historic Louisville, Ky. racetrack for the 145 th consecutive year on Saturday, May 4, 2019.

The total number of races in the primary “Road to the Kentucky Derby” series is unchanged from last year’s lineup with 35 marquee races scheduled. Saturday’s Iroquois kicks off the 19-race “Prep Season,” which features foundation-building races over a minimum of one mile between mid-September and mid-February. Points awarded during the “Prep Season” are worth 10-4-2-1 to the top four placings, respectively, except for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI), which is worth twice as much (20-8-4-2). This year’s 1 1/16-mile Breeders’ Cup Juvenile will be held at Churchill Downs for a ninth time on Future Stars Friday, Nov. 2.

The 16-race “Championship Series,” which comprise springboard events that often bring the 3-year-old picture into sharper focus, is the same as it was in 2018. Most first leg races offer 50-20-10-5 points to the Top 4 finishers while the most meaningful races – the UAE Derby (GII), Louisiana Derby (GII), Florida Derby (GI), Wood Memorial (GII), Blue Grass (GII), Santa Anita Derby (GI) and Arkansas Derby (GI) – are worth 100-40-20-10.  

Some tweaks were made to the second-year European Road to the Kentucky Derby and third-year Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby, which are separate series that each carve out one spot for a potential horse from Europe and Japan.

The new Cardinal Condition Stakes, to be run April 11 over one mile on Polytrack at England’s Chelmsford City Racecourse, will replace Newcastle’s Burradon as the final race of the seven-race European series.

A fourth race has been added to the Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby.  The series will now culminate with the 1 1/8-mile Fukuyru on March 31 at Nakayama Racecourse and is worth 40-16-8-4 points to the top four placings. Also, points for the Dec. 19 Zen-Nippon Nisai Yushun at Kawasaki Racecourse – the race that often decides Japan’s champion 2-year-old dirt horse – were raised from 10-4-2-1 to 20-8-4-2.

This is the seventh consecutive year that Churchill Downs has used a point system to determine entrants for its famed Kentucky Derby. At least 20 horses have entered the “Run for the Roses” every year since 2014, and 18 of the last 20 years.

A similar series remains in place to qualify for the Kentucky Derby’s sister race, the Longines Kentucky Oaks (GI) for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/8 miles on Friday, May 3, 2019. As was the case in 2018, there will be 30 races for the “Road to the Kentucky Oaks” series – 15 “Prep Season” races, which starts with Saturday’s 50 th running of the $200,000 Pocahontas (GII) at Churchill Downs, and 15 “Championship Series” races.

Churchill Downs’ 11-day September Meet opens Friday with a 10-race program at 12:45 p.m. ET and will continue for three weeks through Sunday, Sept. 30. Following a 17-day run at Keeneland (Oct. 5-27) in Lexington, racing on the Kentucky circuit will return to Churchill Downs for the 21-day Fall Meet from Oct. 28-Nov. 25, which includes the two-day Breeders’ Cup World Championships on Friday, Nov. 2 and Saturday, Nov. 3.


2018-19 ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY SCHEDULE

35 Races

Kentucky Derby Prep Season (19 races)

Date

Race

Racetrack

Distance

1st (Points)

2nd (Points)

3rd (Points)

4th (Points)

Sept. 15

Iroquois

Churchill Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Sept. 29

American Pharoah

Santa Anita

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Oct. 6

Champagne

Belmont Park

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Oct. 6

Breeders’ Futurity

Keeneland

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Nov. 2

Breeders’ Cup Juvenile

Churchill Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

Nov. 24

Kentucky Jockey Club

Churchill Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Dec. 1

Remsen

Aqueduct

1 1/8 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Dec. 8*

Los Alamitos Futurity

Los Alamitos

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Dec. 16

Springboard Mile

Remington Park

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Jan. 1*

Jerome

Aqueduct

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Jan. 5*

Sham

Santa Anita

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Jan. 12*

Lecomte

Fair Grounds

1 Mile 70 Yards

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Jan. 25

Smarty Jones

Oaklawn Park

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 2*

Withers

Aqueduct

1 1/8 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 2*

Robert B. Lewis

Santa Anita

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 2*

Holy Bull

Gulfstream Park

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 9*

Sam F. Davis

Tampa Bay Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 16*

El Camino Real Derby

Golden Gate

1 1/8 Miles (S)

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 18

Southwest

Oaklawn Park

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)


Kentucky Derby Championship Series (16 races)  

Date

Race

Racetrack

Distance

1st (Points)

2nd (Points)

3rd (Points)

4th (Points)

Feb. 16*

Risen Star

Fair Grounds

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 2*

Fountain of Youth

Gulfstream Park

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 9*

Tampa Bay Derby

Tampa Bay Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 9*

Gotham

Aqueduct

1 Mile

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 9*

San Felipe

Santa Anita

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 16*

Jeff Ruby Steaks

Turfway Park

1 1/8 Miles (S)

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

March 16

Rebel

Oaklawn Park

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 23*

Louisiana Derby

Fair Grounds

1 1/8 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

March 24*

Sunland Derby

Sunland Park

1 1/8 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 30*

UAE Derby

Meydan Racecourse

1 3/16 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

March 30*

Florida Derby

Gulfstream Park

1 1/8 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

April 6*

Wood Memorial

Aqueduct

1 1/8 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

*April 6*

Blue Grass

Keeneland

1 1/8 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

April 6*

Santa Anita Derby

Santa Anita

1 1/8 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

*April 13*

Lexington

Keeneland

1 1/16 Miles

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

April 13

Arkansas Derby

Oaklawn Park

1 1/8 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

Schedule subject to change. … (T) = Turf … (S) = Synthetic … * = race dates and distances to be announced by host track; date based on recent historical placement.


2018-19 EUROPEAN ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY SCHEDULE

7 Races  

Date

Race

Racetrack

Distance

1st (Points)

2nd (Points)

3rd (Points)

4th (Points)

Sept. 29

Juddmonte Royal Lodge

Newmarket (GB)

1 Mile (T)

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Sept. 30

Juddmonte Beresford

Naas (Ire)

1 Mile (T)

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Oct. 7

Qatar Prix Jean-Luc Lagardère

Chantilly (Fr)

1 Mile (T)

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Oct. 27

October Trophy

Doncaster (GB)

1 Mile (T)

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

March 6

Road to the Kentucky Derby Condition Stakes

Kempton Park (GB)

1 Mile (S)

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

March 8

Patton (Listed)

Dundalk (Ire)

1 Mile (S)

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

April 11

Cardinal Condition Stakes

Chelmsford City (GB)

1 Mile (S)

(30)

(12)

(6)

(3)

Schedule subject to change. … (T) = Turf … (S) = Synthetic … * = race dates and distances to be announced by host track; date based on recent historical placement.

2018-19 JAPAN ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY SCHEDULE

3 Races

Date

Race

Racetrack

Distance

1st (Points)

2nd (Points)

3rd (Points)

4th (Points)

Nov. 24

Cattleya Sho

Tokyo Racecourse

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Dec. 19

Zen-Nippon Nisai Yushun

Kawasaki Racecourse

1 Mile

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

Feb. 17*

Hyacinth

Tokyo Racecourse

1 Mile

(30)

(12)

(6)

(3)

March 31*

Fukuyru

Nakayama Racecourse

1 1/8 Miles

(40)

(16)

(8)

(4)

Schedule subject to change. … (T) = Turf … (S) = Synthetic … * = race dates and distances to be announced by host track; date based on recent historical placement.


2018-19 ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY OAKS SCHEDULE 

30 Races

Kentucky Oaks Prep Season (15 races)  

Date

Race

Racetrack

Distance

1st

2nd

3rd

4th

Sept. 15

Pocahontas

Churchill Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Sept. 29

Chandelier

Santa Anita

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Oct. 5

Alcibiades

Keeneland

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Oct. 7

Frizette

Belmont Park

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Nov. 2

BC Juvenile Fillies

Churchill Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

Nov. 24

Golden Rod

Churchill Downs

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Dec. 1

Demoiselle

Aqueduct

1 1/8 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Dec. 8*

Starlet

Los Alamitos

1 1/16 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Jan. 6*

Santa Ynez

Santa Anita

7 Furlongs

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Jan. 12*

Silverbulletday

Fair Grounds

1 Mile 70 Yards

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Jan. 20*

Busanda

Aqueduct

1 1/8 Miles

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 2*

Forward Gal

Gulfstream Park

7 Furlongs

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 2

Martha Washington

Oaklawn Park

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 3*

Las Virgenes

Santa Anita

1 Mile

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

Feb. 9*

Suncoast

Tampa Bay Downs

1 Mile 40 Yards

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)


Kentucky Oaks Championship Series (15 races)  

Date

Race

Racetrack

Distance

1st

2nd

3rd

4th

Feb. 16*

Rachel Alexandra

Fair Grounds

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

Feb. 28*

UAE Oaks

Meydan Racecourse

1 3/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 2*

Davona Dale

Gulfstream Park

1 Mile

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 2*

Busher

Aqueduct

1 Mile

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 2*

Santa Ysabel

Santa Anita

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 9

Honeybee

Oaklawn Park

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 16*

Bourbonette Oaks

Turfway Park

1 Mile (S)

(20)

(8)

(4)

(2)

March 23*

Fair Grounds Oaks

Fair Grounds

1 1/16 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

March 24*

Sunland Park Oaks

Sunland Park

1 1/16 Miles

(50)

(20)

(10)

(5)

March 30*

Gulfstream Park Oaks

Gulfstream Park

1 1/16 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

April 6*

Gazelle

Aqueduct

1 1/8 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

April 6*

Ashland

Keeneland

1 1/16 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

April 6*

Santa Anita Oaks

Santa Anita

1 1/16 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

April 7*

Beaumont

Keeneland

7 Furlongs

(10)

(4)

(2)

(1)

April 12

Fantasy

Oaklawn Park

1 1/16 Miles

(100)

(40)

(20)

(10)

Schedule subject to change. … (T) = Turf … (S) = Synthetic … * = race dates and distances to be announced by host track; date based on recent historical placement.

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: CHDN) offers year-round simulcast wagering at the historic track. Churchill Downs will conduct the 145 th running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve on May 4, 2019. The track’s 2018 September Meet is set for Sept. 14-30 and its fall Meet will run from Oct. 28-Nov. 25. An eight-time host to the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Churchill Downs will again be the site of that event on Nov. 2-3, 2018. Information is available at www.ChurchillDowns.com.

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