Brown-Forman Expands Race Sponsorship

Brown-Forman, a Louisville distillery and consumer products marketer, is extending its race sponsorships to three other tracks owned by Churchill Downs.

The company announced today it will sponsor and brand the Arlington Classic (gr. II) and American Derby (gr. II) at Arlington Park, the Calder Derby (gr. III) and Tropical Turf Handicap (gr. III) at Calder Race Course, and the Sunset Handicap (gr. II) and Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III) at Hollywood Park. Brown-Forman continues its sponsorship of the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (gr. I), which was known as the Early Times Turf Classic prior to 2000, and begins sponsorship of the Early Times Mint Julep Handicap (gr. III) this year.

In addition to the race sponsorships, Brown-Forman brands have been designated as "official" products of Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby, as well as Arlington Park, Calder, and Hollywood Park. Woodford Reserve is the official bourbon, Finlandia is the official vodka, the Finlandia Bloody Mary is the official Bloody Mary, Korbel is the official champagne, and Fetzer is the official wine.

"There is no doubt that the designation of Woodford Reserve as the 'official bourbon of the Kentucky Derby' has contributed to the success of this relatively new brand," said John Overfield, vice president of Channel Marketing for Brown-Forman Beverages Worldwide. Woodford Reserve was introduced in 1996. "We look forward to working more closely with all of Churchill Downs' racetracks."

Brown-Forman's other brands and products include Jack Daniel's, Canadian Mist, Southern Comfort, Bolla wines, tableware and giftware under the labels Lenox, Dansk, and Gorham, and Hartmann Luggage. The company does not own the Kobel California Champagnes brand but does own the worldwide distribution rights.