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Queen Ernestine Leads Throughout in Monday's FG Feature

NEW ORLEANS, La. (February 2, 2009) - Becky Winemiller's Queen Ernestine broke in stride to make the pace and held on for a half-length victory Monday's featured $44,000 allowance grass dash for 3-year-old fillies at Fair Grounds.

Queen Ernestine, ridden by E.J. Perrodin and trained by Pat Mouton, accomplished the about 5 1/2-furlong distance over a Stall-Wilson turf course rated "good" in 1:05.68 after setting early fractions of 22.44 and 47.26.  She increased her career earnings to $70,400 while earning her second win in five career starts.

As the slight choice of the fans, Queen Ernestine paid $5.80, $3.20 and $3, while second choice Wild Chant returned $3.40 and $3.  Lil' Hottie, 2 3/4 lengths farther back in third, paid $3.80 for the show spot.

Racing returns Thursday at Fair Grounds with a 10-race program and a first post of 12:30 p.m. It's the start of a five-day racing week that includes the six-stakes Louisiana Derby Preview Day program on Saturday.

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.