More Than Racing on Louisiana Derby Preview Weekend

NEW ORLEANS, La. (January 30, 2009) - Fans at Fair Grounds for Louisiana Derby Preview Day next Saturday, and the following afternoon, can enjoy more than just great Thoroughbred racing.

On Louisiana Derby Preview Day, which falls on the final weekend before Carnival season begins in earnest in the Crescent City, six lucky fans will win a Mardi Gras parade kit.

The parade kit includes just about everything you need to parade in style this season: a $100 gift certificate from Dorignac's, a cooler on wheels, a compact disc player, a Mardi Gras CD, a king cake, two pairs of sunglasses, two masks, two fold-out chairs and a blanket.

To enter the drawings, fans must use their Twin Spires Club card to wager and drop a losing Fair Grounds mutuel ticket into one of the designated drums.

Also Saturday, author Ed McNamara will be outside the Paddock Gift Shop from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. to sign his new book, "Cajun Racing: From the Bush Tracks to the Triple Crown," which tells many of the legendary stories of racing in Cajun country. "Cajun Racing" is currently on sale at the gift shop, which is located just outside the paddock near the valet entrance to Fair Grounds.

On Sunday, Family Day makes its return from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. with a Mardi Gras theme. In addition to a King and Jester, a float and throws, the event features interactive inflatable games, face painters and a photo opportunity.

All Family Day activities are free. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, the nation's third-oldest Thoroughbred racing facility, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, Fair Grounds is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN); it also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and nine off-track betting parlors throughout southeast Louisiana. Fair Grounds' 137th Thoroughbred season will run from Nov. 14, 2008, through March 29, 2009, and its inaugural Quarter Horse meet was conducted from Aug. 20-24, 2008. Information about Fair Grounds can be found on the Internet at www.fairgroundsracecourse.com.