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Keeneland Spring Meet Opens Friday, April 5 with Nods to Track’s Storied Past and Exciting Future

Season includes 100th Toyota Blue Grass, reduction in Daily Double takeout

Keeneland is combining evidence of a significant commitment to its future with a salute to its rich history during its 16-day Spring Meet from April 5-26. While in the early stages of the largest construction project here since opening in 1936, the season will feature the 100th running of the $1 million Toyota Blue Grass (G1) on Saturday, April 6 among 19 stakes worth a meet record $8.1 million and will offer a schedule of popular activities and special events for fans of all ages. Meanwhile, Keeneland has reduced the takeout on its Daily Double wager from 22% to 15%.

In January, Keeneland began construction of a three-level Paddock Building that will expand ticketed experiences for the public coupled with a reimagined Saddling Paddock. For patrons, entry to the grounds will look slightly different during the Spring Meet, but guests will find the same exceptional Keeneland experience waiting just past the gates. For the latest information, refer to the Patron Experience Guide at

“We are doubly excited this spring: first to welcome fans to Keeneland for a spectacular racing season highlighted by the 100th running of the Toyota Blue Grass and second to have construction of our new Paddock Building underway,” Keeneland President and CEO Shannon Arvin said. “This project is central to our mission to invest in the future of our sport and will allow us to offer fans a variety of world-class experiences during race meets, sales and beyond. And while fans may see a few construction-related adjustments to parking and entry this spring, we will ensure they will find the Keeneland they know and love inside the gates.” 

Racing will be conducted Wednesdays through Sundays. Post time for the first race is 1 p.m. ET each day, except April 26 when the first race will be at 12:30 p.m. to accommodate the 10-race card that will conclude in time for that evening’s April Selected Horses of Racing Age Sale. The auction is scheduled to begin at approximately 6:30 p.m.

Advance ticket sales required

Once again, all tickets for the Spring Meet must be purchased in advance via Keeneland’s Official Online Ticket Office at

Keeneland offers a return policy of up to 48 hours in advance of race day. Because ticket inventory is updated automatically and available for purchase at, fans should check this site regularly and sign up to be notified when tickets become available.

Parking for Spring Meet

With construction of the Paddock Building, Keeneland has adjusted parking operations for the Spring Meet to ensure patrons have a smooth entry and exit.

Free parking: Available in The Hill and The Meadow with no reservation required. Patrons will have access to complimentary shuttling to the track. Customer service representatives will be at each shuttle stop to help with questions.

Handicap parking: Complimentary handicap parking in Rows 21-25. No reservation or permit is required, and all spaces are located in the paved lot. Complimentary golf cart shuttles from the parking lot to the South Grandstand Entrance are available.

Permit parking: Patrons who have purchased race-day tickets for the Spring Meet are able to pre-purchase a parking space in the Green Lot. These parking spaces will be limited each day and are expected to sell out. Click here to purchase. 

Ride Share: Uber/Lyft/taxis, personal pickups/drop-offs and private car services (sedans and SUVs) will be directed to Ride Share, located adjacent to the Shuttle Depot. Because of the construction footprint, there will be NO vehicular access to the North or South Grandstand Entrances for drop-off/pickup.

Bus Lot: Parking spaces are for commercial buses and must be purchased in advance by calling the Ticket Office at (859) 254-3412.

Track Kitchen: Most parking is limited to horsemen and barn staff. For those coming to eat at the Track Kitchen, there are limited parking spots available to the public directly in front of the building.

Click here for the grounds map with the parking options. 

Also visit Parking FAQ:

Tailgating on The Hill

The Hill – Keeneland’s popular tailgating area – will be open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays during the Spring Meet, weather permitting. No ticket or reservation is required for The Hill, located adjacent to the Keene Barn & Entertainment Center and accessible via Gate 1 (at Man o’ War Blvd.) or Gate 4 (off Van Meter Road on the east side of Keeneland).

Fans on The Hill can watch the racing action via a jumbo TV and place their bets in a wagering tent while they enjoy live music presented by The Burl, food trucks and handicapping assistance from BETologists. Complimentary shuttles to the track are offered. 

The Hill is open from 8 a.m. to 60 minutes after the last race. Amenities are available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

For fans who want to elevate their experience, Keeneland again is partnering with RevelXP to offer tailgate packages for groups of any size. RevelXP will organize tailgates by furnishing a designated tent, catering, amenities and more. Visit for full details. 

Watch races on TV and online

Fans can watch all Spring Meet races live and at no charge thanks to the Keeneland Livestream on Keeneland.comKeeneland Race Day AppKeeneland Select and Keeneland’s YouTube channel.

Other coverage of Keeneland racing includes:

  • “Today at Keeneland,” a 30-minute race-day preview show with handicapping picks and discussion of horses of interest. Racing analysts Gabby Gaudet and Scott Hazelton will host the program, which streams live on Keeneland.comKeeneland Select, Keeneland’s YouTube and FanDuel TV+Also airs live on The CW Lexingtonand can been seen live Saturdays and Sundays on FanDuel Racing.
  • FanDuel TV, which will present live extensive coverage of every race beginning at noon. FanDuel will carry the exclusive live broadcast of the Toyota Blue Grass on April 6 (5:52 p.m. post).

Lower Daily Double takeout headlines wagering action

Beginning at the Spring Meet, Keeneland is reducing the takeout on a Daily Double wager from 22% to 15%. The wager, which requires a handicapper to select the winners of two consecutive races, is offered on all but the final race each race day.

“This pricing is advantageous to our core horseplayers but also is a great opportunity for emerging bettors to try horse racing’s equivalent of a ‘two-game parlay,’ ” Keeneland Director of Wagering Development Jim Goodman said.

Beginning opening day, casual to experienced handicappers will find a variety of action.

On April 5, the Lafayette, the Transylvania (G3) Presented by Keeneland Select and the Central Bank Ashland (G1) will be included in late Pick 4 and late Pick 5 wagers. The Transylvania Presented by Keeneland Select will be part of the Keeneland Turf Pick 3, the popular bet offered on the final three turf races each day. The Keeneland Turf Pick 3 requires a $3 minimum wager. 

On April 6, the All-Stakes Pick 4 and All-Stakes Pick 5 will conclude with the Toyota Blue Grass. 

On that day and on Saturdays of the meet, races from Keeneland and Aqueduct will be part of the Cross Country Pick 5 wager. 

The two stakes on April 7 – the MiddleGround Capital Beamont (G2) and the Palisades (L) – will be included in late Pick 4 and late Pick 5 wagers.

Additional handicapping events during the Spring Meet include:

Wednesday, April 10, 17, 24: WINS-Day Challenge Presented by Malone’s. Enter for $10 at Wagering Central on the first floor of the Grandstand and place a mythical $2 win and place wager – no actual money required – on Keeneland’s final six races of the day. This is an inexpensive way for beginner handicappers to give contests a try.

Friday, April 12: Spring Handicapping Challenge. Available only at the track, the Spring Handicapping Challenge offers one berth to the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge (BCBC) in November at Del Mar and as many as four spots to the 2025 National Horseplayers Championship (NHC) in Las Vegas. Players will wager a live bankroll of $250 on Keeneland races. Click here to register and for more information. 

Saturday, April 13: Grade 1 Gamble. The signature handicapping contest of the Spring Meet is the Grade 1 Gamble, which Keeneland is hosting in cooperation with XpressBet, NYRABets, 4NJ Bets, HPI and TVG on the day of the Jenny Wiley (G1), Stonestreet Lexington (G3) and Giant’s Causeway (G3). Entry fee is $3,500 with $2,500 going to a live bankroll and $1,000 to the prize fund. Contestants may play at Keeneland or on one of the aforementioned ADW platforms. Prizes include an estimated $75,000 for first place (based on 300 entries), as many as six berths in the BCBC and 10 spots in the NHC. Click here to register and for more information.

Also for the Spring Meet:

·        Keeneland will provide complimentary digital programs with Equibase past performances available for download. Click here to access.

·        Keeneland Select is offering a sign-up bonus to new customers. Each new customer will receive $100 back after $200 is wagered on Keeneland races. This is in addition to the sign-up bonus that earns $100 back after a new customer wagers $300 in the first 30 days.

·        Visit Keeneland en Español and DRFenEspañol,com for information about Spanish coverage of the Spring Meet. Roberto Rodriguez will provide daily coverage and analysis for the season. 

Special events reflect Keeneland mission

Throughout the Spring Meet, special events and activities will continue Keeneland’s historic mission to support the Central Kentucky community and the Thoroughbred industry. They include:

Saturday, April 6: Jockey Autograph Signing. Fans will meet active and retired Keeneland riders and Hall of Famers in an event that benefits the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund (PDJF). Hats, goggles and autograph books that can be signed will be available for purchase; personal items and commemorative Toyota Blue Grass poster may be signed with a donation to PDJF. Event will take place in the North Terrace from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. 

Saturday, April 6, 13, 20: Sunrise Trackside. This free Saturday morning program from 8-10 a.m. is geared toward families and offers a unique view of Thoroughbreds during training hours. Fans can enjoy coffee and donuts at the Starting Gate concession stand while watching horses train. Children’s activities on the first floor of the Grandstand will include a visit with Keeneland mascot Buckles, face painting and games. Mini tours will be available at the Welcome Stand near the Paddock. 

Every Saturday, the John Deere Tractor Break will take place during the renovation period on the main track from 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. and include a drawing for a kids tractor from John Deere/Meade Tractor. The April 6 Sunrise Trackside will feature the appearance of two-time champion Goodnight Olive in the Paddock between 8:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. On April 6 and 13, a meet and greet with a horse from the Life Adventure Center of Versailles, Kentucky, will be offered in the Walking Ring from 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. 

Sunday, April 14: Heroes Day. Event honors members of the military (active duty and veterans), first responders, health care workers and their families. Heroes and their families will receive free general admission, reserved Grandstand seating and a complimentary meal at the North Terrace provided by Marriot Griffin Gate. The day will have special programming on the track, including a flag rollout by the Henry Clay High School Junior ROTC and the singing of “God Bless America” by Dr. Everett McCorvey, and honoree recognitions in the Winner’s Circle.

A POW-MIA Chair of Honor will be displayed near the Paddock to bring awareness to past and current POW-MIA military members through a partnership with The Rolling Thunder Kentucky Chapter 5.

Each hero is eligible to receive up to six complimentary tickets. Visit for more information and to reserve complimentary tickets.

Friday, April 19: College Scholarship Day Presented by Lane’s End. Keeneland invites college students to enjoy a day of racing, prizes, scholarship giveaways, behind-the-scenes racing experiences, reserved seating and more. By pre-registering, students will receive a free general admission ticket good for April 19 and the opportunity to win one of 10 $2,000 scholarships provided by the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and Keeneland. Students who attend the race day and have their tickets scanned day-of also will be eligible to win two additional $10,000 scholarships provided by Lane’s End Farm, as well as prize packages from local Kentucky businesses. Activities will take place at the North Terrace from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Pre-register at

Sunday, April 21: Keeneland Kids Club Family Day Presented by Kentucky Children’s Hospital. The Keeneland Kids Club is the Official Kids Club for Keeneland fans 12 and younger. Kids Club members and their families are invited to a special day at the races and will receive free general admission and access to reserved Grandstand seating when they present their membership cards at admission entrances. Children’s activities, which will take place in the North Terrace from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., include face painting and activities with local community partners such as Amplify Horse Racing, Kentucky Children’s Hospital, LexArts, Lexington Ballet and Salvation Army. Sign up for the Kids Club at

Sunday, April 21: PDJF Telethon. The fourth annual fundraising event will be based in the Limestone Café in the Keeneland Sales Pavilion.


Keeneland 2024 Spring Meet at a Glance

Schedule: 16 days from April 5-26. No racing Mondays and Tuesdays.

Gates open: 11 a.m.    

First race: 1 p.m. except for April 26, when first post is 12:30 p.m.

Five Grade 1 stakes: the $600,000 Central Bank Ashland on April 5, the $1 million Toyota Blue Grass and the $600,000 Madison on April 6, the $600,000 Maker’s Mark Mile on April 12 and the $600,000 Jenny Wiley on April 13.


Parking FAQ:

How to watch: Thanks to the Keeneland Livestream, fans can watch all races live and at no charge on Keeneland.comKeeneland Race Day AppKeeneland Select and Keeneland’s YouTube channel. FanDuel TV will present live extensive coverage of every race.

Complimentary digital programs: Including Equibase past performances, these will be available for download at

Patron Experience Guide: 
Make the most of your day at the races and refer to the latest information about parking and entry at

Construction updates: building

The Hill: Popular free tailgating area is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, weather permitting. No tickets or reservations required.

Keeneland en Español: Visit Keeneland en Español and DRFenEspañol,com for information about Spanish coverage of the Spring Meet.

Keeneland Newsletter: Sign up for email updates of your areas of interest at

Official Keeneland Tours: Click here for availability and to purchase.

The Keeneland Shop: Located near the Grandstand South entrance, The Keeneland Shop will host Taste of the Races through Saturday, March 30. Shoppers will receive a 20% discount in the store and samples of Keeneland Brown Butter Popcorn and Keeneland Lager. 

The Keeneland Shop will be open from 9 a.m. to 30 minutes following the final race and on Mondays and Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. On race days, Milliners Corner, Wagering Central and Finish Line locations will be open. 

Milliners Corner near The Keeneland Shop will feature Christine A. Moore (April 5-7) and Formé Millinery (April 14).

These vendors will be located just inside the North Grandstand entrance from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Draper James (April 5), CC Custom Watches (April 11), signing with Wylie Caudill, official artist of the 150th Kentucky Derby (April 12), book signing with John Paul Miller, author of “False Riches” (April 13) and My Darling & Co. hat customization (April 20).

Keeneland Library: Keeneland Library will celebrate this year’s historic running of the Toyota Blue Grass at its free exhibit, A Rite of Spring: The 100th Running of the Blue Grass Stakes, from April 1 through Aug. 16. The exhibit will feature photographs that capture race highlights curated from Keeneland Library collections and public submissions from professional and amateur photographers along with memorabilia from noted jockeys Bill Shoemaker, Mike Manganello and Chris Antley and celebrated runners Whirlaway, Riva Ridge, Spectacular Bid and Strike the Gold. 

Open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., the Library is located on the Keeneland campus. Enter Keeneland at Gate 1 on Keeneland Blvd. and take the first right on Entertainment Ct. The Library is to the left of the Keene Barn and Entertainment Center.

Central Bank Thursday Night Live on April 5: Keeneland will kick off the Spring Meet with a celebration of the 100th Toyota Blue Grass, including a promotion of Keeneland Library’s exhibit about the race and handicapping tips from BETologists. The event, which includes beverages, food, art and live music, takes place from 5-8 p.m. at Fifth Third Pavilion in Tandy Park in downtown Lexington.

Social: @keeneland on Facebook and Instagram and @keenelandracing on Twitter. Use hashtag #Keeneland