Keeneland, in an attempt to ease congestion at its drive-through betting windows May 6-7, Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (both gr. I) days, is partnering with The Red Mile in Lexington to add windows.
Keeneland will have 12 drive-through windows on the two days. In years past drive-through betting alone has generated about $500,000 in pari-mutuel handle for the Oaks and Derby programs from Churchill Downs.
The Red Mile will have eight such windows available May 6-7, Keeneland officials said.
“The demand at Keeneland for drive-thru wagering on Oaks and Derby days has grown tremendously in recent years, prompting us to seek an auxiliary site to help relieve traffic congestion and accommodate more customers in a more timely manner,” Keeneland chief operating officer Vince Gabbert said.
Drive-through wagering at both Lexington locations will be offered from 8 a.m. EDT through the feature race each day. Keeneland will be open as usual May 8 for full-card simulcasts and the cashing of previous days’ tickets.
In the 1990s The Red Mile sold Keeneland its Thoroughbred simulcast rights for $5 million, and since that time the Standardbred track has only been able to offer harness and Quarter Horse simulcasts. The simulcast facility at The Red Mile will be open as usual but will not take Thoroughbred bets May 6-7.