Kris Allen warming up for his American Idol audition at Churchill Downs.

Kris Allen warming up for his American Idol audition at Churchill Downs.

Churchill Downs/Jennifer Stevens

Allen took Churchill Route to 'Idol' Win

Winner auditioned at Louisville track.

When Kris Allen became the eighth winner of the "American Idol" competition May 20, it marked the end of a journey that began at Churchill Downs last fall.

Allen, 23, of Conway, Ark., was among the thousands who auditioned at Churchill Downs Sept. 5, 2008, for an opportunity to compete in the popular singing competition.