Churchill Downs will host the 2011 Breeders’ Cup, it was announced the morning of June 11 by Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear at a news conference at the racetrack.
It will be the first time the Breeders’ Cup World Championships will be held under the Twin Spires in consecutive years.
The 2011 Breeders’ Cup World Championships will be held Nov. 4-5 and will be televised on ABC/ESPN and to more than 130 countries around the world.
The 28th Breeders’ Cup will mark a record eighth time that the Championships will be held at Churchill Downs--legendary home of the Kentucky Derby. This year’s Breeders’ Cup will be conducted Nov. 5-6. Previous editions of the Breeders’ Cup were held at Churchill Downs in 1988, 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, and in 2006.
The previous six runnings have had an average attendance of 73,556, with an all-time single day Breeders’ Cup crowd of 80,452 at the 1998 event. The 2006 event, which was attended by 76,132 fans, also produced all-time Breeders’ Cup records for single day on-track handle, $18,259,971, and the total worldwide single day wagering mark of $140,332,198. “I am thrilled that Kentucky’s iconic Churchill Downs, home of the legendary Kentucky Derby, has been selected to host the 2011 Breeders’ Cup World Championships,” said Beshear.
Gov. Beshear was joined by Breeders’ Cup chairman William S. Farish Jr. and Breeders’ Cup president and CEO Greg Avioli, Churchill Downs Inc.’s president and CEO Robert Evans, Bill Carstanjen, COO of CDI, and Churchill Downs president Kevin Flanery.
“The prospect of consecutive years at Churchill Downs combined with Kentucky’s strong business climate and legislative incentives are sure to make the event a tremendous success for the Breeders’ Cup, greater Louisville and the state,” said Farish. “Churchill Downs continues to be one of the world’s greatest racing facilities, and is extremely popular with our horsemen and fans. We are enjoying an excellent relationship with Bob Evans and the Churchill management team.
"On behalf of our board and trustees and the racing and breeding industry which benefit the Breeders’ Cup, we appreciate Churchill’s continued enthusiasm and support in extending our relationship for the 2011 World Championships.” its first back-to-back visits to Churchill Downs and our city.”
This year’s Breeders’ Cup will be the first at Churchill under the two-day format. It will also be the first Breeders’ Cup in which both days of the Championships will finish under the lights.