SportsBreeders' Cup


Keeneland construction more than doubles capacity for Breeders' Cup

Posted at 6:00 PM, Sep 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-18 12:15:37-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Keeneland has a massive amount of construction going on currently in order to host the Breeders' Cup.

Crews are building five temporary structures called chalets to more than double capacity from around 20,000 to 45,000 fans.

"If you come on our grounds, you can't miss the build that's going on here," said Kara Heissenbuttel, senior director of operations and community relations, .

New stands, called loge boxes, have also been constructed to seat 1,500 people.

keeneland stands.jpg

"It gives these fans a seat for the day where they can have food and beverage and the spectacular view," she said. "They get to watch the horses coming down the stretch until they cross the finish line."

An elevated dining menu they've been working on alongside the Breeders' Cup for three years will also be available.

"If you just have a general admission ticket, we've upgraded all of our concessions stands," she added. "Regardless of where you are on Breeders' Cup day, you're going to have a culinary experience to match that."

Heissenbuttel said Keeneland is very proud to be able to host the world-class event.

"To bring people from all over the world to see where these thoroughbreds are born and raised, to bring them home to race here is so important to us, and to be able to showcase Lexington," she said.

It's not just a win for Keeneland but for the city as well, economically speaking.

When Keeneland hosted the Breeders' Cup for the first time in 2015, hotel occupancy ran around 95% with 96 thousand people attending, according to Visit LEX.

To encourage visitors to see all Lexington has to offer, Visit LEX VP of sales and services, Marci Krueger-Sidebottom, said hotels will have welcome posters with QR codes to a link on "what to do in Lexington".

"The extra visitation and visibility for Lexington is amazing as it always enhances the chance for these visitors to really want to return for another visit and bring family, friends, or a business meeting," Krueger-Sidebottom wrote in an email to LEX 18. "Hosting BC also puts Lexington in the spotlight by having this amazing event show up on national and international TV. That exposure, you can’t overlook nor underestimate the value."

The Breeders' Cup will run November 4-5th. Tickets can be purchased here.

Tickets for the loge boxes and one of the temporary structures, called chalets, will also be available for the Keeneland Fall Meet in October.