(Edited Churchill Downs news release)
Churchill Downs on Nov. 1 unveiled the official logos for 2009 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Kentucky Oaks (gr. I), which are the 135th renewals of the events.
The new Kentucky Derby 135 mark features two sides of a sleek, golden horseshoe joined at the bottom by a stylized red rose. In the center of the horseshoe are the words “Kentucky Derby” in gold and black font and the number “135” to designate the event’s 135th renewal. The words “Churchill Downs” and the date “May 2, 2009,” appear beneath the horseshoe.
A slender golden horseshoe also tops the official Kentucky Oaks 135 logo, while a vibrant pink stargazer lily pops out from the horseshoe’s center. Emblazoned in bright pink and gold text beneath the primary artwork are the words “Kentucky Oaks 135” and “Churchill Downs – May 1, 2009.” The Kentucky Oaks is traditionally held one day before the Kentucky Derby.
The event logos will adorn all officially licensed merchandise, including apparel, gift items and tickets.
Churchill Downs also introduced non-dated versions of the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks logos that are similar in color and design to the dated versions for the 2009 events. Both non-dated marks feature a golden horseshoe with the signature flowers associated with each event, a red rose for the Kentucky Derby and a pink stargazer lily for the Kentucky Oaks, emerging from their respective centers. Churchill Downs will use the non-dated marks for a variety of applications, including its line of officially licensed merchandise and other product offerings currently in development.
Churchill Downs partnered with SME Branding, a world leader in branding and design based in New York City, on the new Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks logos and brand standards. SME’s client list includes some of the biggest names in sports, higher education and corporate America. The firm has recently launched successful branding campaigns for Dolphins Stadium and the Miami Dolphins Cheerleaders, National Hockey League, Major League Soccer, L.A. Galaxy professional soccer team, Ladies Professional Golf Association, Houston Texans professional football team and the United States Olympic Committee.